Community Housing Program Evaluation

Location: Hobart, TAS

Duration: 4-6 months

Project Background

Mission Australia is a national Christian charity that provides a range of community and housing services throughout Australia. Mission Australia’s Strengthening Communities (SC) team works across all Mission Australia Housing (MAH) tenancies around Australia.

The SC program works with MAH tenants, their neighbours, local services and the broader community to create social change through improved trust and engagement, building aspirations, increasing participation and community cohesion, and improving wellbeing.

Mission Australia currently manages 500 social housing in Clarendon Vale and Rokeby in Tasmania. Operating as housing manager since 2013, Mission Australia has also sought to strengthen the community through not only the provision of high quality tenancy support but also community development activities.

Mission Australia has been running programs and activities in the area for a number of years and have identified that their activities are having a wide-ranging effect, not only on their tenants but in the communities as a whole.

Mission Australia wish to undertake a program evaluation that seeks to understand these effects, for Mission Australian Housing tenants as well as the wider community

Research to be Conducted

Mission Australia are looking for a PhD student with knowledge of evaluation methods to undertake an evaluation of their Housing Strengthening Communities program in Clarendon Vale and Rokeby area. They are keen to understand the short, medium and long-term impact of the teams’ activities in the following areas:

  • Employment and education
  • Sports and recreation
  • Housing
  • Amenity and arts
  • Safety
  • Community
  • Connectivity

Mission Australia will negotiate the specific scope of the project with the successful PhD student and their academic mentor. However, the successful candidate will be required to develop an Evaluation Methodology document that encompass quantitative and qualitative approaches, a clear understanding of the program logic, clear project milestones and details of the tools and methods that will be used. This document should also include the activities to be included in the approach, such as survey, interviews and focus groups.

With their commitment to community engagement and inclusion, Mission Australia would like the tenants to be involved in the evaluation as co-investigators or peer interviewers. Therefore, knowledge of participatory research methods would be a strong advantage.

The successful candidate will be responsible for undertaking data collection, gathering information from various sources, conducting the analysis and developing the final report.

Skills Required

If you’re a PhD student and meet some or all the below we want to hear from you. We strongly encourage women, indigenous and disadvantaged candidates to apply:

  • Preferably a Masters qualification in the social sciences (e.g. anthropology, sociology, criminology, political science, geography and public health)
  • Knowledge of community housing and the role of Community Housing Providers in Australia
  • Evidence of experience undertaking projects with a similar research design/methodology i.e. developing and using quantitative/qualitative methods to undertake community development and analysis
  • Excellent writing and presentation skills, using plain English;
  • Understanding and experience of working with disadvantaged young people, their unique situations and knowledge of the sector;
  • Experience of/demonstrated interest in community development
  • Knowledge/Experience of utilising participatory methods
  • Previous experience of conducting program evaluations.

Expected Outcomes

A final report no more than 25 pages in length (including annexes) detailing Executive Summary setting out key messages; detailed findings of the outcomes; analysis and conclusions; and recommendations for service delivery, advocacy and policy.

Additional Details

The intern will receive $3,000 per month of the internship, usually in the form of stipend payments.

It is expected that the intern will primarily undertake this research project during regular business hours, spending at least 80% of their time on-site with the industry partner.  The intern will be expected to maintain contact with their academic mentor throughout the internship either through face-to-face or phone meetings as appropriate.

The intern and their academic mentor will have the opportunity to negotiate the project’s scope, milestones and timeline during the project planning stage.

Reference

APR – 1303