The Together Project is a charity that creates intergenerational experiences, boosting wellbeing, reducing loneliness and enabling stronger, happier communities.
During the first lockdown in March 2020 The Together Project had to cease their intergenerational music group, ‘Songs & Smiles’ which invited 0-4 year olds (and their grown ups) into older people’s care homes and communal spaces.
However, they soon launched Hand in Hand Together, an initiative aimed at reducing the isolation that the lockdown brought. Children were encouraged to create hand print art works, which were then sent to residents of care homes – and vice versa. Stories and pictures were swapped in the post, allowing the youngest, oldest and in-between generations to feel connected and spread a bit of happiness between themselves.
This initiative sparked the idea for Crafting Connections – an arts and crafts exchange, pairing children with care home residents. However, the team at The Together Project wanted to find out more about their potential audience and whether this initiative was just an idea or had grounding as a live project.
Through the research they wanted to:
- Speak to parents, guardians and carers of children aged 0-14
- Understand their opinions and values around intergenerational contact
- Hear what effect the pandemic has had on families
- Understand how frequently children and grown ups do arts and crafts
- Know the barriers and benefits to doing arts and crafts activities
- Understand charitable donation habits
- Understand behaviours regarding subscription boxes for children
- Measure consideration of the proposed concept
This insight would enable them to:
- Decide whether to move ahead with the project
- Scope and refine the offering
- Create materials to support grant applications
Sapio Research’s first charity giveaway was launched at just the right time. The Together Project applied via our online form, and were randomly selected via an online generator as the lucky winners.
Sapio donated a project worth over £2,500 which included:
- Questionnaire advice and consultancy support
- Survey programming, hosting and incentives
- 2,000 consumers’ opinions
- A PPT report outlining the key findings and next steps signposting.
The research revealed that 86% of parents and carers would like to do more arts and crafts with their children, and 90% were interested in taking part in the initiative.
We also learned that the majority feel it is important for their children to interact with people of different ages and backgrounds.
Those interested in taking part in the initiative would expect to pay an average of £10 per month.
The Together Project supplemented the consumer research that Sapio ran with interviews with care homes and their residents, who expressed great excitement about the idea.
The insights gave them confidence to proceed with their plans and evidence to demonstrate the potential value the programme would bring.
Research insights allowed the team at The Together Project to substantiate grant applications and create materials to support fundraising efforts to get the project off the ground. £45,000 was required to take Crafting Connection to market and create the first 500 friendships (at which point it would become self funding). Thanks in big part to the consumer demand demonstrated by the research, the funding target was achieved.
In February 2022, Louise Goulden, founder and CEO of The Together Project got in touch to let us know that Crafting Connections had been created and launched and we couldn’t be happier for them.
The project was the epitome of a well-rounded and thorough research project and we’re so glad that Crafting Connections has been launched and is bringing joy and friendship to people around the country. A great example of the power of market research.
“I’m truly delighted to be Crafting Connections’ ambassador. Creating art has so many benefits, whatever your age – from enhancing imaginative thinking and improving coordination skills to boosting your mood – and I love that this project has such a worthwhile purpose at its heart. I can really imagine the joy that both the children and the older people will experience when they open their friends’ pictures each month – what a wonderful thing to be part of”Award-winning illustrator and author Nick Sharratt is Crafting Connections ambassador
The research project has been such a valuable tool, both for giving us the confidence to proceed and for bringing funders on-board. As a relatively young, small charity, market research at this scale is not something we’d engaged in before, but the insights delivered means we’re definitely considering it for future initiatives.