Publication of pilot study report informs new 'Match Me' research
The study successfully designed and tested a research method for evaluating the effectiveness of letting procedures for adapted housing, using a co-production approach involving housing providers, disabled researchers and applicants.
The study has provided the foundation for an 18-month research project into the allocation of adapted and accessibly designed social housing. 'Match Me? What works for adapted social housing lettings' is a partnership project between Horizon Housing Association, Housing Options Scotland and the University of Stirling.
The project is grant funded by the Disability Research into Independent Living and Learning (DRILL) programme, supported by the Big Lottery Fund thanks to National Lottery players. The project will train and employ disabled researchers and will be guided by an advisory group led by disabled people.
The partners are also pleased to announce Margaret Follon, currently Chair of Housing Options Scotland Board, as Chair of the Project Advisory Group. Margaret, also a social housing tenant and disability activist, said:
“The pilot study showed there had been no research in Scotland on the barriers and opportunities to improve access to the choice, control and independence that a suitably adapted home provides. Match Me aims to change that. I am delighted to be appointed Chair of the Project Advisory Group, bringing my experience of searching for a suitable home and knowledge of the systems and processes, and joining a group of able and committed people to steer this important work.”
Dianne Theakstone, Project Researcher, said: I'm thrilled to have this opportunity as a visually impaired early career researcher to work on this exciting co-production project. The project partners are passionate about taking forward our learning from the pilot study, including the fantastic contributions that disabled peer researchers offer to the methodology. I look forward to engaging with a variety of stakeholders during the project including housing professionals, social work, occupational therapists and of course most importantly, raising the voices of disabled house- seekers."