The Big Lottery Fund‘s A Better Start programme is a £165m initiative that aims to improve the life chances of babies and children by achieving a step change in preventative approaches in pregnancy and the first three years of life, based on the best available science on ‘what works’.
The Social Research Unit at Dartington has been appointed by the Big Lottery Fund to support 15 shortlisted areas to develop science-based prevention strategies as part of an application for this investment using our methodology Better Evidence for a Better Start.
The Social Research Unit at Dartington is delivering a series of training events on the concepts and methods underpinning the Better Evidence for a Better Start project. The training will be based on three types of module that combine short introductions to the concepts with practical illustrations of how the ideas can be applied.
The ‘what is’ modules can be found here.
As part of the Better Evidence for A Better Start process, each local authority will be provided with an Area Wellbeing Profile (for 0-8 year olds). The wellbeing profiles allow local authorities to better understand the needs of their population. Each site will use their unique Area Wellbeing Profile to inform the development of a proposal to improve the life chances of babies and children.
We have produced two evidence reviews as part of the project for sites to draw upon:
The second Better Evidence for a Better Start evidence review, ‘what works’ is now available.
The first stages of Better Evidence for a Better Start are about preparation, bringing the governance structure together, collecting the necessary data, getting the backing of community and systems leaders. The latter stages of the method, which will be applied once the Stage 2 applications have been processed, are focused on ensuring high quality implementation at scale, and ensuring there will be good quality data to drive effective decision making.
In the middle falls the strategy days – two days when the partnership(s) comes together to collectively agree the core proposition on which detailed plans can be built.
For more information, refer to the Project Guidance.
We have collated a set frequently asked questions (FAQ) and responses. If you have other questions, please contact us.
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The Big Lottery Fund’s £165m Fulfilling Lives: A Better Start initiative aims to deliver a step change in preventative approaches in pregnancy and the first three years of life to improve life chances of babies and young children.
The Social Research Unit at Dartington is an independent charity that seeks to increase the use of evidence of what works in designing and delivering services for children and their families.
The Center on the Developing Child at Harvard University generates, translates, and applies knowledge in the service of improving life outcomes for children.