Based within the Department of Health Services Research and Policy at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, I work on a joint Greater London Authority (GLA) and CLAHRC funded project that aims to evaluate the Healthy Schools London (HSL) programme. HSL was established in 2013 with the aim of improving children’s health and well-being. My responsibility using qualitative methodologies is to conduct an evaluation of HSL’s impact, and in an iterative process, inform the further development of HSL to (i) assess the potential for the HSL programme to influence educational achievement, promote healthy lifestyle behaviours, and reduce health inequalities in London, (ii) explore the extent to which becoming a Healthy School is associated with changes in school-level policies, activities, and agenda. This includes key indicators of health-related knowledge, attitudes, and behaviours, (iii) assess the nature and level of engagement with the HSL programme by schools and any differential uptake by socio-economic factors, and to understand the drivers and barriers to becoming a Healthy School.
Dr Darren Sharpe is an accomplished Social Scientist with over fifteen year experience in delivering high end research and developing programmes of work spanning health, education, citizenship, welfare, and social care. These include youth engagement projects on behalf of the UK Government and EU, Night Time Economy research funded by the Police and Crime Commissioner for Essex and child protection research on behalf of the Children Commissioner Office in England, as well as media guidelines on the prevention of youth suicide for the EU (i.e. Directorate of Health and Consumers). Darren specialises in participatory research in the development of social and health policy. He is an award winning and highly accomplished academic-activist who has worked tirelessly since 1997 to help improve outcomes for young people who do not have a powerful voice. Dr Sharpe has written widely and been an invited speaker at INVOLVE, Social Service Research Group Association, AYPH and other national and international conferences on a range of socio-political topics affecting young people in Europe and around the world.
Dr Sharpe lectured in the Department of Social Sciences at Nottingham Trent University, Loughborough University and Anglia Ruskin. He has designed and taught modules in Core Sociology, ‘Race’, Culture and Society and in Qualitative Research Methodologies and Methods for doctoral, postgraduate and undergraduate students. He is held in high-esteem by students and colleagues for his teaching, scholarship and research and features in the 2014-15 Anglia Ruskin postgraduate prospectus. What’s more, Dr Sharpe has trained and mentored teachers to conduct action research in the school environment and provided bespoke research skills training to public and third sector employees.
Emma is a student pursuing a PhD titled “An exploration of an asset-based approach to the management of diabetes in young people: a qualitative participatory approach” supervised by Professor Angela Harden and Dr Darren Sharpe. It is embedded in the CLAHRC’s wider project examining the co-design of community-based services responsive to the needs of children and young people, which involves young people in all stages of the research process.
Jennifer has a BSc hons in Human Biology, Sociology and Psychology and an MSc from the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine. She has a background in non-clinical public health with experience working in Nepal and Zimbabwe. She is part of the Nurture Early for Optimal Nutrition team based at the UCL Great Ormond Street Institute of Child Health. Her PhD is exploring the Reverse translation of the women’s groups using the Participatory Learning and Action Cycle from resource-limited setting to the UK. She will be adapting this model to address infant nutrition in the Bangladeshi population of Tower Hamlets, east London.