Hidden Needs report reveals extent of deprivation in Northamptonshire

A new study by Northamptonshire Community Foundation has revealed the top priority needs within the County.

A report commissioned by Northamptonshire Community Foundation highlights the extent of deprivation in Northamptonshire. According to the new research carried out by the University of Northampton, Institute for Social Innovation and Impact, there are notable social inequalities particularly relating to health and wellbeing and education and skills that will have a detrimental impact on local communities, if not addressed urgently.

Although Northamptonshire is often viewed as an affluent county the report reveals that Northamptonshire has areas in the top 1% most deprived nationally for education and skills, income and employment, health, crime and housing.

Other findings include increasing child poverty and homelessness across Northamptonshire. The Northamptonshire Hidden Needs report challenges assumptions of Northamptonshire as an attractive rural county with few social problems. By assessing the County’s hidden needs, the Foundation aims to work with donors to encourage pooling of resources towards the social problems in the County that need the most urgent attention.

Victoria Miles DL, Chief Executive of Northamptonshire Community Foundation said: “Whilst the report shows areas of great concern and need, it also shows how the Foundation is already meeting some of those needs through case-studies of the difference made by locally funded projects. We hope to engage with a range of partners and donors on how we can work together to tackle some of the most pressing needs head on.”

The academic research was conducted by Professor Richard Hazenberg and PhD Researcher, Claire Paterson-Young at the University of Northampton, Institute for Social Innovation and Impact.

Claire Paterson-Young, the lead researcher on Northamptonshire Hidden Needs spoke about the study: “Finding and analysing information from such a diverse range of sources was challenging, but it did allow us to gain a deeper understanding of the needs in Northamptonshire, which are varied and location dependent.

"However, the findings I believe will have a great impact in allowing Northamptonshire Community Foundation to effectively target the fantastic support that they provide the voluntary sector in the County.”

The summary report and full report is available online here.