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Bedford House Community Association
The Association works to improve quality of life through adult education; including art, fitness and leisure courses.
Idea for research
Idea for research
Bedford House Community Association (BHCA) is embarking on a research endeavour aimed at producing a robust Impact Report that empirically illustrates BHCA’s profound influence on the local community’s mental and physical wellbeing. Furthermore, the study will extend its focus to assess the consequential impact on Essex County Council's Social Care budget. The research seeks to establish a compelling case for the Return on Investment (ROI) generated by BHCA's support, emphasizing its role in preventing falls, bone fractures, depression, and social isolation among its predominantly aged 55+ demographic.

Moreover, we aim to uncover how our diverse activities play a significant role in delaying the onset of dementia. Shockingly, research indicates that 30% of those aged 60+ may be on the dementia journey, making our mission critical in helping over 100 individuals at any given time to remain independent and in their homes for a longer duration. With a special emphasis on the inclusivity of BHCA's classes, accommodating mixed ability levels and fostering respite activities for carers, the research will paint a comprehensive picture of the multifaceted impact BHCA has on its community.
Impact of idea
The resulting Impact Report is anticipated to serve a multitude of strategic purposes, including:

· BHCA Knowing Our Values: Solidifying BHCA's understanding of its core values.
· Community Awareness: Raising awareness within the community about BHCA’s invaluable contributions.
· Supporting Fundraising: Providing essential data to bolster fundraising initiatives.
· Council Investment Renewal: Demonstrating to the council the positive ROI, critical for lease renewal in 2028.
· Lobbying Opportunities: Empowering BHCA to advocate for community interests and secure ongoing support.
· Strategic Review: Informing the organization's next strategic review to align future goals with community needs.
· Formal Partnerships: Facilitating strategic partnerships with organizations such as Alzheimer’s and Dementia Friends.
· Service Enhancement: Offering insights into meeting member needs and identifying opportunities for innovative services and support.
BHCA currently possesses foundational data, including age band, disability, ethnicity, and geographical details collected during the annual membership process. This dataset will be instrumental in crafting a comprehensive impact report. The organization is also prepared to gather additional data through surveys and focus groups, ensuring that all information collected adheres to anonymization standards.

It is important to collect both quantitative and qualitative data to create a good rationale for our continued existence, and also for attracting new people to benefit from our services. It is also important so that we can adapt our services to the needs of our users, or potential users.

Translating prevention and health benefits into money is something we haven’t done so far. In particular the financial data relating to Essex C Council’s budget savings is a new kind of data to calculate.

Demonstrate how we are aligned with the council’s policies and how we can support the council to meet their overall targets.

If you have any existing data or information you would like included in a project, please tell us what kind of data these are

Application process
Application criteria
We require students to have a willingness to learn, have an interest in our demographic overall (mainly aged 55+), and in health & wellbeing for the demographic as well as an interest in the community sector. Curiosity about what the demographic would like from BHCA, and how activities directly impact health, wellbeing and independence. Ability to connect ideas and have data analytical skills. Applicants do not need DBS checks.
DBS needed
Is this project fully accessible to students with the disabilities?
Disabilities information
We are situated in an old Victorian building which has not yet been adapted for accessibility. The offices are on the first floor although much of the work could be done from one of the ground floor rooms if required. This project may also enable us to raise funds to make the site more accessible.