News & Views

The SCiP Alliance is delighted to confirm that we have secured the expertise of Academic Consulting and Education Services (ACCESS) to expand the highly regarded Thriving Lives Toolkit into the higher education sector. Over the next 18 months, the team at ACCESS will be exploring the education experiences of students from Armed Forces families in higher education settings across the four nations of the UK, and the perspectives of the professionals’ supporting them. The researchers will then produce a well-tested, evidence-based toolkit of effective practice in HE based on the research findings, which will be launched as part of the Thriving Lives Toolkit online suite in September 2025.

The work supports the Thriving Through Childhood and Beyond project, a Naval Children’s Charity and SCiP Alliance partnership to expand the Thriving Lives Toolkit across the student life course, from early years through into higher education, covering children aged from 0-25. The project has been funded by the Armed Forces Covenant Fund Trust, through the Transformational Grants programme. A separate contract will deliver the early years research and toolkit development.

ACCESS will be closely supported by an advisory group of higher education staff and students from institutions across the UK. We are grateful for the support of this group, chaired by Dr Liam Satchell, Senior Lecturer at the University of Winchester. The group includes:

  • Army Families Federation
  • Brunel University London
  • University of Bournemouth
  • Edinburgh Napier University
  • Heriott Watt University
  • Liverpool Guild of Students
  • Ministry of Defence - Armed Forces Families and Safeguarding
  • Naval Families Federation
  • Northumbria University
  • Oxford Brookes University
  • Swansea University
  • University of Winchester

If you would like to know more about the project, or if you are a setting interested in engaging with the research, please contact Rachel Lad, Head of Operations and Development.

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