Evaluation Year-end Report 2018/19

September 2019

Over the past year awareness of HSK has improved and positive engagement was received from stakeholders. Extensive work has taken place locally to promote the programme and rollout to the new areas was considered a success. However, further work may still be needed to simplify key messages to ensure the wide range of stakeholders engaged with the programme understand it’s aims and how their role contributes.

Overarching deliverables remained the same and fidelity to the implementation plan was achieved, except for some slight amendments which were made to ensure deliverables aligned to programme priorities. A small number of risks and challenges were documented over the past year, however by reviewing processes or available resources and adapting to arising situations, they were successfully mitigated or resolved.

The Resilience Hub continues to be well used, however there was less awareness of the Hub among those completing the stakeholder survey this year and recognition that further development of the Hub as a resource is needed. The tools available universally via the Hub have been further developed based on feedback from stakeholders and a post has been secured to support the rollout of the Resilience Toolkit to non-HSK schools and the community.

The training available to staff through the programme continues to be well received. Staff report how it has improved their confidence in supporting young people’s emotional health and wellbeing and are demonstrating how they are putting learning into practice within their settings. Further rollout following investment from the Clinical Commissioning Groups will ensure the reach of training is widened to more staff.

The reach of support provided by HSK has extended considerably over the past year, with over a fifth of young people in Kent aged 10 to 16 now benefitting from universal support in schools or through participation in the community. Young people are still very much involved in the development of the programme and participation/co-production is a success that is celebrated.

Overall, the number of young people identified as requiring additional support far exceeded the number expected at the start of the programme, however the volume taking up mentoring and transition support was lower than expected, explained partly by delivery partner staff as being due to initial administrative and logistical challenges. There were overall themes in the issues faced by the young people accessing the support, such as managing emotions and relationships at home, and it was reported that a high proportion were autistic or had ADHD.

When comparing the change in wellbeing and difficulties of those that received HSK support to all young people that age who completed the HSK school survey between 2017 and 2018, those that received HSK support reported a significant improvement in their wellbeing. The wellbeing of young people accessing mentoring or working with a HSK Early Help worker also significantly improved following the support. Talents & Interests and Pay It Forward grants are helping young people to become more resilient and are also helping to build relationships within the community.

There is increasing evidence that HSK is facilitating system change in school and community approaches to young people’s mental health. They are sharing learning and influencing thinking by working in collaboration with partners across the system. However, there was appreciation from staff that system change takes time and that further support may be needed in some schools to fully embed a whole school approach.

Full report available by contacting:
Sarah Collins – HeadStart Kent Monitoring and Evaluation Officer