About This Project

Assessing the impact of a ‘Family Innovation Fund’ programme / Essex County Council


Essex County Council’s new ‘Family Innovation Fund’ programme aims to help families and individuals in volatile situations build resilience, and reduce their reliance on statutory support. The programme is being implemented by six different partners across the region, each offering their own intervention service. As such, the client asked us to find out: what impact, if any, have these interventions had? And where could they be improved?


We visited families who were recipients of different forms of intervention, each with their own story to tell. The video above follows 12-year-old Lewis, who had been experiencing extreme behaviour at home. We looked at the context leading up to referral, the experience of support, and the overall impact. Our research contributed to a written report, designed by us and published by Traverse (formerly the Office for Public Management).


“I would thoroughly recommend Close-Up Research, and would not hesitate to use you again. You quickly developed a sound understanding of the programme, and put the families at ease. Our end-client was extremely happy with the end results, emailing to say: ‘What a wonderful way to see the impact of programmes we’re trying to understand. Really highlights the importance of understanding the changes for the whole family – not just the child receiving the intervention and the parent(s) – but the siblings and others who might live at home. If ever there was evidence of holistic interventions – really great.’”

– Senior Consultant, Impact & Innovation at OPM (commissioned the work on behalf of Essex County Council)

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