We are really proud to announce the findings of the recent external evaluation of our 1:1 home-based ESOL support service. The research provides academic and external weight to what we already know: that LEAH clients make strong progress in their English and their ability to access services in English.
Our external evaluators, Dr Frances Hunt and Dr Olga Cara from UCL, analysed our monitoring data and carried out interviews with clients, referrers, volunteers and staff. They found:
Numerous examples of how clients English improved as a result of using the LEAH service
Qualitative and quantitative evidence that clients increase their confidence and their independent access to public services
That volunteering with LEAH brings benefits in terms of enjoyment, intellectual and social stimulation, developing new skills and engaging with the local community
That our 1:1 home-based model supports strong outcomes for clients because it enables: tailored support; access to language support in a secure setting; strong relationships between clients and volunteers
The evaluators also commended the enthusiasm and professionalism of our amazing volunteer team, the quality of LEAH's training for volunteers, and the holistic support that clients receive from staff and volunteers in terms of their learning and signposting to future provision.
The evaluation also poses a range of questions for us to consider as we take forward our work, and we are excited about the challenge of improving what we offer even further.