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Walking & Talking: A Narrative Review of The Quality, Value And Impact of Detached Youth Work

This research was funded within the scope of a two-year funded programme by City Bridge Trust, as part of the Cornerstone Fund, to generate, mobilise and utilise knowledge and insight to change the life chances of young people.


The project aimed to:

1. Improve services for young people in London through better use of data and research;

2. Increase coordination and reduce duplication of effort on data gathering and research; and

3. Facilitate closer links between research and practice, increasing practitioners’ use of research and researchers’ impact on practice.


Through this project, Partnership for Young London, Centre for Youth Impact (now part of YMCA George Williams College), London Youth, and the Young People's Foundations worked together with a bold vision for young Londoners to build the conditions for the services and support for young people to be:


• More informed by research, practice and the experiences of young people themselves; and • More joined up through local and regional collaboration; and thus more effective.



This paper presents a narrative review of detached youth work, through which youth workers engage with young people in their own communities and environments. Specifically, it focuses on detached youth work’s quality, value, and impact on young people.


The review takes an inclusive approach to evidence, encompassing peer-reviewed literature and grey literature from the past two decades. It enhances understanding of detached youth work and identifies potential areas for future research and practice







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