We’re delighted to announce that the interim evaluation report on our No Recourse to Public Funds (NRPF) project is now available for download, along with a short summary document.
Those seeking refugee status and asylum seekers – many fleeing exploitation, persecution or violence – face lengthy waits while their immigration status is settled by the Home Office. During this time, they are critically at risk of falling into homelessness and destitution, as they are unable to work to support themselves and unable to access benefits – in Home Office parlance, they have “no recourse to public funds”. This is especially true for those who have received an initial negative decision but are entitled to appeal or re-apply. Our NRPF project, which launched in 2015 in partnership with Praxis Community Projects, aims to provide free housing for refugees who would otherwise be trapped in destitution.
As part of the Commonweal model, we commission in-depth rolling evaluations of all our projects, to ensure that the projects are supported in capturing knowledge and maximizing learning. As such, in April 2015 we engaged an expert team, with in-depth knowledge of the policy and practice landscape as well as expertise in evaluation methodologies and practice, to act as “critical friends” to the project, our partners, investors, and Commonweal.
Their interim report, covering the set up and first 12 months of the project, is now online, based on interviews with all staff involved, clients and key stakeholders, document and data reviews and various meetings (as participants and as observers). A “sounding board” of key experts and practitioners was convened to reflect on current and future relevant trends, and their conclusions were fed into the interim report as well. The interim report focuses significantly on the formative elements, and recommendations for next steps by Praxis, Commonweal and the investors.