Evaluation of the Returning Home Program

Project Type - Mental health, Program evaluation and review


SA Health contracted HOI to undertake an evaluation of the Returning Home program. The program assisted  long term residents of Rehabilitation Services at Glenside Campus in preparation for, and achievement of, transition to community accommodation, with support from government and non- government services (NGOs).

The objective of the evaluation was to determine the following:

  • What are the consumer outcomes?
  • To what extent have the program objectives been met?
  • To what extent do the services provided align with the roles and responsibilities outlined in the service model?
  • What partnership development activities have been undertaken, and how have they impacted on individual services and program development?
  • What have been the barriers associated with the design, planning and implementation of the program?
  • To what extent are the governance arrangements (coordination, partnership and program management committees etc.) appropriate?
  • To what extent do the governance arrangements for the program promote effective work practices and facilitate desired outcomes?

The key methodological components included the following:

  • a literature scan documenting the history of institutionalisation, consumer capacity to cope and key elements that contribute to improving consumer outcomes as well as the identification of best practice elements for such a service
  • development of a robust Evaluation Framework to guide the process and ensure objectives of the evaluation were met
  • extensive quantitative data analysis, including analysis of the Ridgeway recovery-Enhancing Environment (REE) Measure survey feedback
  • consultation with consumers, NGO workers and carers and qualitative analysis of feedback received. Analysis included a thematic analysis to maintain confidentiality
  • measurement of consumer outcomes using the National Outcomes and Casemix collection (NOCC) measures.

HOI produced a comprehensive and evidence based evaluation report summarising the findings of the analysis undertaken. With respect to consumer outcomes, HOI reported on:

  • Social connectedness and community and vocational engagement
  • Physical and mental health
  • Housing
  • Overall satisfaction
  • Impact on NOCC scores

The strength and utility of sector and organisational partnerships and governance were also reported on.