Skip to main content

Evaluation of Carers Matter for Norfolk County Council

Evaluation report | February 2024

Between 2020 and 2023 IPC worked with Norfolk County Council to evaluate their model of support for unpaid carers implemented using a social impact bond mechanism. The Council expected that the support would sustain caring relationships over time and prevent carer breakdown. We used a mixed methods approach to engage with a wide range of stakeholders (importantly including carers themselves)to explore impact and outcomes.

We found many positive aspects of the support that were highly valued by carers and enhanced their wellbeing, and we make recommendations on scope for further improvements. We did not find evidence that the service can offer substantial savings by preventing carer breakdown, and we challenge the assumptions that underpinned these expectations.

We recognise the tensions in balancing breadth and depth in supporting carers, and the importance of a universal offer of information and advice, while also identifying carers in greatest need requiring targeted and regular support and intervention, particularly when caring demands are long-term and intensifying. The need for contingency support (including regular respite) for carers with higher needs underlines the importance of coordinating carer support with support for the cared for person.

Fiona Richardson, Director
Fiona Richardson, Director

Contact the author