IMPACT to run 20 projects across the UK in 2024-25

IMPACT (Improving Adult Care Together), the UK centre for implementing evidence in adult social care, has today announced that it will be running 20 projects across the UK in 2024-25. Projects were chosen from a national longlist, following an open call for applications at the end of 2023, and will launch in September.

In 2023, IMPACT moved into a five-year ‘delivery’ phase (2023-27) and launched 15 projects – an increase on the six initial projects from our pilot year.

Our ‘Demonstrators’ and ‘Facilitators’ involve staff employed or seconded to work in the host organisation, using evidence to support practical changes in the realities of local services and of people’s lives.

Our ‘Networks’ involve a number of groups across the UK, using evidence to support practical changes locally, and sharing learning with each other.

Projects for 2024-2025

Our Facilitators will be:

  • Family Group Decision Making to support people with drug and alcohol issues – City of Edinburgh. These ways of working are more common in children’s services, but could be really powerful in adult services and when working with complex, inter-connecting issues across whole families.
  • Improving support for people who hoard and self-neglect – Aberdeen Health and Social Care Partnership. This is an issue that is often poorly understood and can be seen as no one’s priority. In response, this multi-agency project seeks to further develop and embed new practice models, support more trauma-informed approaches and improve future training and understanding.
  • Improving support for carers – Carers Northern Ireland and South Eastern Health and Social Care Trust. This project will take an interactive tool for understanding the needs of different groups of carers in the local area, developed by the ESRC Centre for Care, helping decision-makers to more fully tailor the support they provide to specific needs and groups.
  • Making sure that supported living genuinely enhances choice and control for people with a learning disability – Positive Futures, Northern Ireland. During the pandemic in particular, a number of people were concerned that some supported living schemes might default to a more institutional approach, rather than making sure they really enable people to lead ordinary lives. This project draws on the evidence to challenge these tendencies, and to enhance choice and control.
  • Boosting employment for people with a learning disability – North Wales Together. We see social care as a form of social and economic investment that we make in ourselves as a society – and enabling people to work is a classic example of this in action.
  • Joint work with housing – Thera Trust. Living in the right place for you is a key part of being in control and having a good life – but social care and housing are too often seen as almost completely separate things. This project aims to develop housing-based approaches which also help to prevent hospital admission and improve hospital discharge.

Our Demonstrators will be:

  • Transition from children to adults – Pembrokeshire; Mencap Northern Ireland/Northern Ireland Centre for Independent Living. Our service systems too often break us down into ‘children’ and ‘adults’, with a really difficult fault line between the two. These projects will work on ways to improve the way we handle such transitions and to develop more holistic responses.
  • Embedding a culture of prevention based on what matters to communities – Neath Port Talbot. Many services have historically had a crisis focus, and it has been really difficult to strategically re-balance our systems towards longer-term prevention. This is a key challenge for every Council, so learning from this project may benefit everyone facing similar dilemmas across the UK.  
  • Social work/social care practice with older people – Walsall. Recent research shows what a difference social workers who are skilled at supporting older people can make, and suggests ways to better organise teams and practice to free social workers up to do what they do best. This project will implement insights from this research, seeking to improve outcomes and help people do what they came into the job to do in the first place.
  • Building on lived experience – developing a framework approach for care experienced adults to live connected and fulfilling lives – National House Project, with a post in Coventry and another in Fife. There are lots of attempts around the country to involve people in designing their own support or in specific services – but it has often been harder to meaningfully involve people in planning what support will be available for a population. This project will explore these issues, as part of work to develop a more strategic approach to supporting young people who have been in care as they move into adulthood.
  • Day opportunities for people with a learning disability – Greenwich and Bury. In the past, lots of areas have focused on providing care in day centres, rather than on broader and more creative approaches to helping people lead more ordinary lives of their choosing.
  • Reducing violence, discrimination and abuse experienced by social care staff – East Sussex. While we ‘clapped for carers’ during COVID, too many social care staff face violence, discrimination and abuse as they go about their work. This project draws on insights from the evidence to better protect staff, value social care workers and build more respectful relationships.
  • Changing public perceptions of social care – Scottish Care: national project through remote working. Social care is too often seen in negative terms, and is poorly understood by the public, media and policy makers. This project will explore ways to change public perceptions and to celebrate what’s great about care.

Our Networks will be:

These Networks will be run in local groups across the four nations.

  • Care technology
  • Recovery-based approaches in mental health
  • Strengthening inclusion and anti-racist practice
  • Lived experience and strategic commissioning
  • Support to overcome ‘thorny’ commissioning issues
  • Carers, care transitions and co-production

We have a number of Network members already confirmed, but will be seeking further members over the course of the year, on a rolling basis.

Incredibly excited

Professor Jon Glasby, Director of IMPACT, said:

We’re incredibly excited to be announcing our list of 2024-25 projects, based right across the UK. We were blown away by the number of applications we received in our latest open call for host sites at the end of last year, and I’m excited to see IMPACT grow yet again with 20 projects – all providing practical support in the realities of local practice to make a difference to services and to people’s lives.

We will be launching a recruitment campaign for staff to work on our Facilitators and Demonstrators in the coming weeks, and will continue to share learning and outcomes from our projects as they develop.

IMPACT will be recruiting people to work as IMPACT ‘Facilitators’ and as ‘Strategic Improvement Coaches’ in different locations across the UK. These are 50% roles for 12 months, and designed to work really well for people from policy, practice, applied research and/or with lived experience who want to broaden their skills and CVs by gaining experience of leading evidence-informed change in the realities of front-line services.

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Find out more from our host organisations, on why they applied and their aspirations.


IMPACT is a £15 million UK centre for implementing evidence in adult social care. It is funded by the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) and the Health Foundation. IMPACT’s Leadership Team is made up of 14 individuals, led by Professor Jon Glasby at the University of Birmingham. This team includes academics, people who draw on care and support, carers organisations, workforce bodies and a series of other policy and practice partners, from across the UK.

IMPACT believes that ‘good support isn’t just about ‘services’ – it’s about having a life.’ In pursuit of this vision, IMPACT’s four aims are to:

  • Increase the use of high-quality evidence, leading to better care practices, systems and outcomes
  • Build capacity and skills in the adult social care workforce to work with evidence of different kinds to innovate and deliver better outcomes
  • Develop relationships between a wide range of stakeholders across the sector, to improve outcomes for people who draw on services and their families
  • Improve understanding of what elements of evidence implementation do and do not work in practice, and using this to overcome barriers