GoWell - initial findings from Glasgow regeneration study
posted on: Mar 19, 2007
GoWell - the first study of its kind in Europe - is investigating the impact of the planned £1 billion investment in Glasgow's homes and communities on the health and wellbeing of individuals and families located in some of the most deprived communities in the city.
Unprecedented in its scale and ambitions, GoWell has completed more than 6,000 interviews with Glasgow households since its launch in 2006 and will continue to do so every two years for the next decade.
The results of future studies will be compared against these first findings to measure how much of an impact the investment is having.
The 6,000 people who have taken part in GoWell so far were asked about their health and wellbeing, and their housing, neighbourhoods and communities.
Key findings from GoWell's first community health and wellbeing survey have revealed that:
Most of the GoWell communities have reasonably good levels of community cohesion. They perform relatively well in terms of perceived safety and ‘belonging', but less well in terms of social harmony, informal social control and trust/honesty.
While most respondents have social support of different kinds available to them, in regeneration areas over a third of people lack sources of financial and emotional support.
Across all types of the GoWell study area, few people feel able to influence decisions that affect their local area (whether these are made locally or not). In transformation areas, where the biggest decisions affecting the local area will be made, sense of empowerment is very low. A range of processes are now being put in place by housing, regeneration and health agencies to establish better processes of community engagement and involvement, which should improve this situation.
Striking differences exist between ethnic groups on a range of health measures, with white Scottish people faring consistently less well than people from other communities.
Overall, GoWell respondents have a relatively positive view of their health, yet in the past year one in five had spoken to a GP about being anxious, depressed or having an emotional problem.
Deputy Communities Minister, Des McNulty, said:
"GoWell will give us an understanding of the impact that this investment is making to improve the well-being of individuals, families and communities in the city.
"It will allow us to see what works and what doesn't. It will allow the partners involved to use the 10-year programme to target resources to improve lives for people in Glasgow and involve them more and more in the plans."
The GoWell findings will be used to help measure whether investment in Glasgow's homes and communities is having a positive impact on the health and wellbeing of the people involved.
The findings will have important implications for all those working in health, housing, and regeneration in Glasgow as well as nationally and internationally. They will also be of considerable interest to a wide range of individuals, communities, organisations, practitioners and policy makers across Scotland.
GoWell is a collaborative partnership between the Glasgow Centre for Population Health, the University of Glasgow, and the Medical Research Council and brings together a prestigious group of researchers whose work in health, housing, and regeneration is renowned both nationally and internationally.
GoWell is sponsored and funded by Communities Scotland, Glasgow Housing Association, NHS Greater Glasgow & Clyde, and NHS Health Scotland.
For further information contact:
Tel. 0141 2219439