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Insights into hardship and disadvantage in Perth, Western Australia: the 100 Families WA baseline report

Health inequity Poverty Social disadvantage Socio-economic disadvantage Social inequality Western Australia

The 100 Families WA project began in earnest in July 2018, and seeks to build a deep, rich understanding of entrenched disadvantage in Western Australia by researching with rather than on those experiencing it. Community Conversations with those with lived experience, facilitated by the UWA Consumer and Community Health Research Network, informed the topics that our data collection explores, the language used in recruitment materials, and the methods of recruitment. A Community Advisory Group meets approximately every second month to discuss and provide advice on various aspects of the project. Acknowledging the range of family structures that one can be part of, where most studies of poverty are undertaken at the household level, the 100 Families WA project conceptualises family and household separately. The family is comprised of whomever an individual thinks of as their family, whereas the household pertains to those that live together.

The 100 Families WA project utilises a unique combination of longitudinal quantitative data, fortnightly qualitative interviews with family members, and linked administrative data together with active engagement of those with lived experience in the design of the study to develop a comprehensive picture of entrenched disadvantage in in Perth. Baseline surveys with 400 family representatives identified by service delivery agencies as experiencing entrenched disadvantage took place between November 2018 and April 2019. From the 400 people that completed the survey, 100 that indicated interest were selected to take part in fortnightly interviews for a year, beginning in May 2019. A second wave of surveys with the original 400 family representatives will be undertaken in November 2019, and a third wave in November 2020. The 100 Families WA project has sought consent from those that completed the survey to link administrative data relating to people’s interactions with systems such as the health, justice, and child protection systems, throughout their lives, in order to observe and track their journeys through the health and social service system. Finally, in 2021 we will undertake a series of co-design workshops to translate the findings of the 100 Families WA project into actionable policy and practice recommendations.

This report presents the results of the baseline survey. The baseline survey examined the following key domains: demographics, family and household composition, income, material deprivation, social and personal connections, health status, employment status, mental health outcomes, substance use, wellbeing and quality of life, and adverse life experiences. The baseline survey also presented family members with the opportunity to provide answers to open-ended questions: ‘what would you do with a spare $100?’, ‘what does a good day look like for you?’, ‘what do you need to be safe and well?’, and ‘what is the one thing that would make the biggest positive change in your life?’

Related Information

Entrenched disadvantage in Western Australia: health, economic and social impac… https://apo.org.au/node/240261

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