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Worrying About Money?: Scotland’s Cash First referral leaflet

Woman working out finances
Published: November 2021

The Independent Food Aid Network (IFAN) commissioned ScotCen Social Research in June 2021 to conduct qualitative research into the impact of the ‘Worrying About Money?’ leaflet in Scotland.

The research sought to understand how the ‘Worrying About Money?’ leaflet was being used in different local authority areas and capture any emerging impact related to the use of the leaflet. The research explored participants’ experiences of using the leaflet including any benefits or difficulties they encountered. The research also asked how the leaflet could be improved.

Findings

  • Overall, the ‘Worrying About Money’ leaflet has been viewed very positively by participants. The leaflet has been recognised as a useful tool which can help support income maximisation and poverty reduction work at a service, organisational and local authority level. This has been demonstrated by the range of people from local authorities, NHS and third sector organisations who have been involved in using and disseminating the leaflet to date.
  • The leaflet is being used in a range of ways which has been dictated both by the contact and relationships services have with individuals experiencing financial difficulties, as well as COVID-19 restrictions.
  • The main impact reported by participants is that the ‘Worrying About Money?’ leaflet has helped raise awareness amongst staff, volunteers and people experiencing financial challenges, which organisations can provide financial support and how they can be accessed.
  • Staff and volunteers also reported that the leaflet had given them confidence to discuss money with people experiencing financial challenges and signpost or refer them to staff.
  • While it has been more challenging to capture the impact the leaflet has had on individuals experiencing financial difficulties, participants were able to give examples of incomes of those experiencing financial hardship being increased as a result of referrals.
  • Participants’ positive experience of the ‘Worrying About Money?’ leaflet has been illustrated in their support for the leaflet being rolled out across Scotland. It was felt that the leaflet was a practical tool that could complement existing resources and approaches to poverty reduction and income maximisation across Scotland.
  • For the leaflet to be most beneficial, time and resource need to be committed to tailor the leaflet to the local context, disseminate the leaflet and raise awareness of its purpose.
  • Where possible, training should be provided for those wishing to use the leaflet to generate conversations about money to ensure that this is done sensitively.

Methodology

ScotCen conducted 14 semi-structured telephone and video interviews with delivery partners, advice providers and community food aid providers in four local authority areas: Argyll & Bute, Glasgow, Highland and West Lothian. Interviews took place between 11th August and 3rd November 2021.

Download the report under "Reports, blogs and news coverage"