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This is the first of three planned reports within a longitudinal evaluation of the Mental Health and Employment Partnership (MHEP).

MHEP is part-funded by the Department for Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) under the Life Chances Fund (LCF). The LCF was launched in 2016 as a locally-led SIB fund to tackle entrenched social issues across England. The LCF contributes to SIB projects through payments by results contracts. These contracts involve social investors and are locally commissioned.

DCMS is working in partnership with the Government Outcomes Lab (GO Lab) to evaluate the LCF and the use of SIBs in local commissioning. MHEP was selected for specific longitudinal study because of the existence of comparable projects using traditional commissioning routes. Its findings are based on qualitative interview data and aggregate performance data across the five SIBs

The first interim report of the MHEP evaluation provides information on the project’s theory of change including facilitators, barriers and mediating mechanisms, as well as presenting early quantitative analysis on outcome performance.