11 July, 2020

Breathing Space: An evaluation of Orbit’s mental health programme

Breathing Space is a mental health service run by Orbit. It was established in April 2017, with the purpose of supporting Orbit customers to achieve positive improvements in their mental health. The service arose from Orbit’s increasing awareness of the poor mental health of many customers, including many in general needs properties. Recognising that it does not have expertise in mental health, Orbit contracted five delivery partners to provide mental health support across the midlands, east and south-east of England. To coordinate referrals into these delivery partners, Mental Health Matters were also contracted to provide a Single Point of Access (SPOA), which takes referrals from Orbit staff and passes them on to the relevant local delivery partner.

Orbit commissioned HACT to carry out an independent evaluation of the Breathing Space service in April 2019. The evaluation framework is designed to provide an independent assessment of how Breathing Space has been delivered in practice, its performance during the reporting period, and learning that can be applied to future tendering and service design to optimise impact. The evaluation was carried out using a mixed-methods approach, incorporating quantitative and qualitative research, desk review of Orbit documents and wider literature, and a Social Value assessment.

The outcomes of this research included:

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PUBLISHED: July 2020

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