In 2018, we were asked to lead the learning and evaluation partnership for the Building Connections Fund, an £11.5 million joint initiative by the government, the National Lottery Community Fund and the Co-Op Foundation to reduce loneliness.

We are gathering evidence together to improve the evidence base on loneliness, which will be used to inform longer term policy and funding decisions. Our partnership will support grant holders with evaluation through a programme of online guidance, workshops, and tailored assistance.

We are undertaking a Developmental Evaluation of the grant-holders post-Covid 19 response to learn from the current situation and capture emerging findings. This includes:

  • Supporting grant-holders and the wider sector to learn from the data collected and improve their service provision.
  • Working closely with a small group of grant holders in a focused and supportive way to understand what they are doing, how they have adapted and what they have been working on to reduce or prevent loneliness.

The results of our evaluation will be published in autumn 2021. In the meantime we’re publishing some of what we’ve learnt from doing this work, including tips to help you run a remote project, reflections on running a developmental evaluation, and guidance on measuring loneliness.

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Tips for running a remote loneliness project

We hope that by publishing these tips for running a remote project to tackle loneliness we can help the many charities tackling similar challenges to build on these lessons, both now and in the future.

Tips for remote loneliness projects

Reflections on developmental evaluation

Through sharing our experiences, we hope to contribute to the important, on-going conversation about how to evaluate in fast moving situations.

Reflections from developmental evaluation
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Evaluating loneliness activities

This guidance has been produced for Building Connections Fund grant-holders but can be applied to any activities aimed at reducing loneliness. It is designed to complement the What Works Centre for Wellbeing’s Brief guide to measuring loneliness. You do not need to have any prior knowledge of impact measurement or evaluation.

Evaluating loneliness activities

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