Centre for Homelessness and Inclusion Health
The Centre for Homelessness and Inclusion Health (CHIH) is a collaboration between the University of Edinburgh and local partners in Scotland to improve the health and wellbeing of people who experience homelessness.
This collaboration is an exciting new initiative to bring together people with lived experience of homelessness, those working in the NHS, third sector, policy, local government and academia to work together to develop learning, teaching and research to improve the health and wellbeing of people who experience the worst health outcomes in society. The Centre for Homelessness and Inclusion Health (The Centre) has been in development since 2016 and has built up strong partnerships working across a range of sectors, it has increased understanding of different perspectives and developed a clear vision of how we can work together to make a difference.
Our Centre for Homelessness and Inclusion Health contributes to the vision of Edinburgh Local, to engage more meaningfully with the local community by bringing together the social, economic and political resources of the University of Edinburgh to work together with partners across the city to develop a unique and dynamic centre for learning, teaching and research to improve the health and wellbeing of homeless people in Edinburgh.
The health and wellbeing of people experiencing homelessness are at the heart of our centre, which means that existing health care staff are being supported to develop new learning opportunities in the field of homelessness and health. Experts by experience are helping with teaching and learning, and are directly involved in shaping and doing research. University of Edinburgh students and staff have increasing opportunities to undertake learning placements in organisations that work with people who are experiencing homelessness and research ideas are being co-produced by academic staff, service users and a wide range of health, social care and third sector colleagues. All of this work aims to improve the health and wellbeing for the most marginalised in Edinburgh and the wider society.
In addition, existing partnerships are being strengthened in the UK and internationally with leading research colleagues in homelessness. We were delighted to welcome Dr Juliet Watson from RMIT, Melbourne, Australia to our first International Research Symposium in Edinburgh in June 2018. This enabled international and national links with policy, research and practice organisations to be developed further to draw on best practice and to promote knowledge exchange.
Theory of Change
Our Centre has developed in an organic way and we came together in August 2018 to develop a Theory of Change. This was generously funded by the Carnegie UK Trust and through this process, we have been able to clarify our aims, refine our vision and align the ‘hopes and wants’ of all of those involved in our collaboration into a coherent plan and direction. Ewan Aitken, CEO of the Cyrenians has written a fantastic blog to describe our progress to date and our Theory of Change is now available to download as a PDF below.
Learning and Teaching