Evaluations Into Peer Advice

Walk The Talk: Creating the Big Society – Peer Advisor Programme

Date: 2010

Evaluated by: Frontier Economics

Project overview: The Peer Advisor Programme is a project run by the St Giles in prisons and local communities. The St Giles Peer Advisor programme enables prisoners to achieve Level 3 or 4 qualifications in Information, Advice and Guidance (IAG), and to gain the skills, knowledge and experience to become a Peer Advisor. Trained Peer Advisors provide practical and emotional support to other prisoners (clients), from the unique position of “someone who’s in the same boat” and through relationships of trust, empathy and mutual respect.

Key outcomes:

Training as a Peer Advisor:

  • Increases chances of employment from 24% to 52%) – generating an incremental benefit of £3,800.
  • Peer Advisors are more likely to move into education or training (36% compared to 6%) with an incremental benefit £1,800.
  • Peer Advisors employment-related benefit claims are likely to fall (81% to 61% claiming) – incremental benefit £670.
  • Peer Advisors housing-related benefit claims are likely to fall (81% to 61% claiming) – incremental benefit £670

Being advised by a Peer Advisor:

  • Increased chances of employment from 24% to 44% – generating an incremental benefit of £1,950.
  • Increased moves into education or training (44% compared to 6%) – incremental benefit £1,580.
  • Employment-related benefit claims are likely to fall (81% to 64% claiming) – incremental benefit £580.
  • Housing-related benefit claims are likely to fall (81% to 64% claiming) – incremental benefit £580.
  • Total benefits are £16.3m, driven by improvements in employment £9.0m, education and training £5.3m and housing and health outcomes £1.9m.
  • The benefits-to-costs ratio of the Peer Advice Project is around 5-to-1 – thus Every £1 invested by the St Giles Trust creates at least £5 in benefits.

Download our Walking The Talk: The Benefits Of Peer Advice Evaluation

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