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Funded by The National Lottery Community Fund and the European Social Fund

Brief for the External Evaluation of Age UK Milton Keynes Support into Employment Project

Previous History

Age UK Milton Keynes is one of the organisations delivering on the Building Better Opportunities delivery in Milton Keynes, Aylesbury, South Northants and Cherwell.

In 2015 a call was put out to VCSE (Voluntary Community and Social Enterprise) organisations in the SEMLEP (South East Midlands Local Enterprise Partnership) for delivery outputs as part of BBO.  Age UK Milton Keynes was one of five organisations in Milton Keynes that were successful in their application. The others were MK Dons SET, Sieve MK, Talkback and MK Christian Foundation. 

  • Delivery of Mental Health support is by Mind BLMK (based in Flitwick).
  • Luton Borough Council is the accountable body for BBO with local VCSE lead organisations providing the link between Luton Borough Council and delivery partners.

The project officially started in October 2016, although most projects including Age UK Milton Keynes didn’t get going until January 2017. The lag in the project affected recruitment of clients and resulted in an underspend in the first advance payment and differences in both payment and result profiles.

Initially Age UK Milton Keynes envisioned the project being delivered by existing staff. However the changes in paperwork and the overload of administration lead to a great deal of discussion at Board level as to whether they should continue with the project. When a staff member left it was decided to directly employ someone to deliver the advice and guidance element and a project manager to run the project. This reduced the paperwork required for these staff members, although the level of paperwork increased for support staff in IT, Finance and HR.

At present the project covers its costs and at no risk to the organisation, and obviously provides a service to the Age UK Milton Keynes client group which does not exist in Milton Keynes.

Current situation - The brief for this evaluation

In 2019 Age UK Milton Keynes was invited to roll over the contract to June 2021. The contract was extended to include Northamptonshire.

Age UK Milton Keynes wishes to commission an evaluation of the project from 2019 – 2021. The contractor will need to build on the previous evaluation and the evaluation carried out on the whole Building Better Opportunities Project carried out by the contract lead, Luton Borough Council.

  • The report should make recommendations on how the current delivery could address the new employment situation brought about by the current Covid-19 Pandemic.
  • Recommendations on training programmes that address the skills that will be needed for future employment.
  • What has worked well and what hasn’t
  • Highlight tools and methodologies to improve service in the future (Theory of Change)
  • Identify partnerships and funding opportunities that can support future delivery
  • You should use a SROI methodology for this evaluation

Cost £8,000 inclusive of VAT and accreditation of report.

Your response to this brief should be received by 12pm on Monday 30th November 2020.

Please send your response to
Sue Quinn – BBO Project Manager, Age UK Milton Keynes, The Peartree Centre, 1 Chadds Lane, Peartree Bridge, Milton Keynes MK6 3EB