Evidence of improved wellbeing and resilience
In 2016-17 Eikon frontline staff engaged with over 4,700 young people through programmes, courses and projects. An additional 10,000 engagements were facilitated through Eikon delivered training to frontline educational professionals.
We use a ‘self-anchoring’ impact measurement tool which asks young people to plot the progress they think they have made during their involvement in Eikon programmes.
Across the various types of group work delivered:
- 62% of young people made ‘substantial progress’ (20% improvement or more).
- 77% of young people reported ‘substantial progress’ in their levels of confidence specifically.
- 10% felt they had closed the gap between their confidence levels and where they wanted them to be.
National and international evidence suggests that improvements in confidence and self-esteem in turn bring improvement to attitudes, aspirations, behaviours and achievements, which transform young people’s perspective of themselves and the world.
The Brathay Trust Research Hub was commissioned in 2015 to undertake an independent evaluation of Eikon’s Youth Specialist Programme in schools. The research team undertook five main phases of work: a literature review; desk-based analysis; primary research with key stakeholders, including young people and alumni; primary research with Youth Specialist staff from Eikon and primary research with both school and community contacts. Here is a summary of the evaluation.
The evaluation found causal evidence of the positive outcomes of Eikon’s work in meeting the needs of young people. The aim of improving wellbeing and resilience is achieved through helping young people to
- Develop their awareness of themselves and the situation they are in
- Be more positive about themselves
- Improve their social and communication skills
- Develop strategies for coping with difficult situations and feelings, e.g. anger
- Grow more positive and supportive relationships
The first outcome of Eikon’s work, helping young people to develop their awareness of themselves and their situation, was found to be the foundation of the other outcomes. Learning, growth and changes in behaviour have to be realised for oneself and cannot be told or “done to” young people. For example, a young person needs to realise their anger or anxiety, before they will entertain taking on coping strategies to control this in the future. Significant evidence was found of critical elements of this unique approach, including the way Youth Specialists worked, and the specific activities and techniques they used.
Read a summary of Brathay’s findings here.
We also work with our partner schools in collating data to measure how our work with young people impacts behaviour, participation and academic achievements in school.
We are extremely touched and encouraged by the vast amount of anecdotal evidence from young adults who get in touch with Eikon to thank us for help provided in their teenage years. Charles, whose mother died of breast cancer when he was young and whose father was an alcoholic, is one example of how we support young people and build better lives. Charles is now 23 years old, has graduated from University and has recently married. Charles says:
Having support through Eikon was a great help to my self-esteem and confidence. I think what is really important is that a child’s upbringing shapes the path of their future. If that path strays too far off course, it can affect the rest of their life with sometimes irreversible effects. I feel that Eikon can help change that