Evaluating a new model of tackling child sexual exploitation across England


Evaluation Reports

Evaluation of the Alexi Project ‘Hub and Spoke’ programme of CSE service development: Final Report

Dr Julie Harris and Dr Debi Roker, with Dr Lucie Shuker, Dr Isabelle Brodie, Dr Kate D'Arcy, Dr Sukhwant Dhaliwal and Professor Jenny Pearce

This is the final report of the evaluation of the Alexi Project 'Hub and Spoke' model. Sixteen specialist voluntary sector CSE services were funded to expand into 35 new local authority areas over the three years of the evaluation. Using a realist evaluation design, this longitudinal research developed and tested a range of theories about the impact of the model on improving safeguarding for children and young people affected by CSE. The conclusions will support ongoing learning, and contribute to the evidence base on  effective service responses to CSE. In particular, the report provides insight into the distinct contribution and value that specialist voluntary sector support services bring to this arena, operating within the complex, multi-agency landscape of services that respond to this issue.

Year One Progress Report: 2013-14

Dr Julie Harris, Dr Debi Roker and Dr Sukhwant Dhaliwal with Dr Lucie Shuker and Professor Jenny Pearce

This report summarises the activities of the three Hub services participating in phase one of the evaluation. Lessons for phase two services are highlighted, as well as early messages on how effective the Hub and Spoke model is at achieving the CSEFA's strategic objectives. 

Year Two Progress Report and Interim Findings: 2014-15

Dr Julie Harris, Dr Debi Roker, Dr Kate D'Arcy and Dr Lucie Shuker with Dr Isabelle Brodie and Professor Jenny Pearce

In year two of the evaluation the research team visited eight Hub and Spoke services, interviewed 97 participants and collected data about the numbers of young people and practitioners worked with. This report summarises some of the key emerging findings in relation to the aims of services, the recruitment and support of Spoke workers, methods and techniques used in Hub and Spoke projects, experiences of and impact on local CSE policy development, and outcomes of Hub and Spoke services for young people. A particular focus is on young people’s participation in CSE services, and identifying the different models and techniques used by services to support this. The report particularly aims to share learning with the eight new Hub and Spoke services about to begin work in January 2016.

Participation Reports

The participation of young people in child sexual exploitation services: A scoping review of the literature

Dr Isabelle Brodie

This review aims to develop understanding of the conceptualization, nature and impact of participation in child sexual exploitation services, as well as the necessary conditions for effective participatory working, and the replicability of participative models. 

The participation of young people in child sexual exploitation services: A scoping review of the literature - Summary for practice

Dr Isabelle Brodie

The summary identifies the key issues and messages arising from the main review of participation in child sexual exploitation services and provides ‘questions for practice’
arising from the review


NWG Conference 2017 Slides

Power point presentation from the 2017 NWG Conference

Overcoming the challenges of evaluating services that support young people affected by sexual exploitation: A realist approach

Dr Julie Harris and Dr Lucie Shuker

On 20th January 2016 Julie Harris and Lucie Shuker presented at the Children and Young People Now conference 'Achieving Outcomes'. Their title was 'Overcoming the challenges of evaluating services that support young people affected by sexual exploitation: A realist approach

Event Reports

Fragmented System conference report

Lucie Shuker

On 26th April 2017 the Alexi Project and International Centre hosted a one-day conference aiming to explore the gap between policy and practice in relation to young people's participation and CSE. Fourteen presenters contributed their experience and perspectives including practitioners, young people, policy-leads, researchers and funders. This report captures the key themes and issues arising throughout the day as well as ideas generated about how to 'close the gap'

Learning Exchange 2016

In December 2016 hub and spoke services from all three phases met in London fora day of sharing knowledge, networking and hearing about the progress of the evaluation. You can read a summary of the day in the attached report, or view the powerpoint slides.

Learning Exchange report: December 2015

On 1st December 2015 the evaluation team hosted a one-day learning exchange event in London for all of the Hub and Spoke services being funded by CSEFA. The team shared key messages from the research so far, and provided a context for phase 1, 2 and 3 services to develop relationships and share information. The report summarises the content of the presentations and the discussions held. 

Other Publications

Learning Event 2017

Effective approaches to Hub and Spoke provision: a rapid review of the literature

Dr Lisa Bostock and Rachel Britt

This report employed a systematic reviewing strategy to identify and synthesise 20 published evaluations of hub and spoke services across a range of settings with some relevance to CSE. Assessing the impact of hub and spoke service provision is hampered by a lack of effectiveness evidence. However the report summarises the evidence that is available and identifes a series of contextual factors that determine the design, delivery and success of the model


The Children and Social Work Act: new safeguarding arrangements

Dr Lucie Shuker

This briefing considers the policy and practice implications of the Hub and Spoke evaluation for the implementation of the new safeguarding arrangements outlined in the Children and Social Work Act. This briefing will therefore be of particular interest to independent chairs of LSCBs, new safeguarding partners and local agencies with responsibility for responding to CSE.

The role of the voluntary sector in protecting children from CSE

Dr Lucie Shuker and Dr Julie Harris

This briefing summarises the findings of  the Hub and Spoke evaluation - highlighting evidence on the role of specialist voluntary sector CSE services in protecting children and young people.

Voluntary and statutory sector partnerships in local responses to CSE

Dr Lucie Shuker and Dr Julie Harris

This briefing summarises key findings of the Hub and Spoke evaluation - focusing on evidence that can support the development of effective partnerships between voluntary and statutory sector agencies when responding to CSE.

The challenge of outcmes measurement in CSE services

Dr Lucie Shuker

One of the findings of the Hub and Spoke evaluation was that CSE services struggled to evidence ‘top-level’ outcomes, because of a range of challenges around impact measurement. This briefing considers these in more detail and in the context of the experience of voluntary and community sector organisations more generally.

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