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YEF Multi-Site Trials

In partnership with the Youth Endowment Fund (YEF) and a consortium led by the Centre for Evidence and Implementation, with Bryson Purdon Social Research, the Centre will  test an innovative evaluation approach: Multi-site trials of practice. To do this, we will be doing an evaluation of mentoring practice with a group of youth organisations.

About the research

The 18-month project will test the feasibility of multi-site trials - a rigorous impact evaluation that works across multiple delivery organisations that are all using a similar model of practice.

Multi-site trials are innovative because randomised controlled trials (RCTs) usually take place within one organisation focusing on one specific programme or project. We want to see whether we can run the same sort of RCT with multiple organisations that are all offering a similar ‘model’ of mentoring to young people. This model will be co-designed by delivery partner organisations and informed by existing evidence.

Through the research, we want to understand what it takes to do this type of impact evaluation, what support organisations need to do it well, and to learn more about the wider impact of mentoring.

Delivery partner organisations

We are looking for up to 20 organisations that are skilled and experienced in providing one to one mentoring support to young people aged 10-14. Mentoring should centre on supporting young people to develop social and emotional skills as part of early intervention to reduce young people’s risk of involvement in youth violence. 


In this project, we are defining mentoring as an intentional 1:1 ongoing relationship between a trusted adult and young person, with the aim of supporting young people’s personal goals and aspirations and socio-emotional development.

Research phases

After a development phase where we will work with all 20 delivery partner organisations to agree the practice model (a shared approach to mentoring for all organisations to delivery), the research will be split into two parts - A feasibility trial and a pilot trial. 

During the 6-9 months feasibility phase, we will work with 10 of the delivery partner organisations to;


  • Test the extent to which the model can be delivered with fidelity; and
  • Test the evaluation approach for the trial with a small group of organisations and young people


If the feasibility phase goes well, we hope to progress to a pilot trial. This is a 12-month delivery phase, where the 20 youth organisations will recruit at least 50 young people per organisation to deliver 1:1 mentoring. 

Why get involved?

This is an opportunity for organisations to be part of a potentially ground-breaking research project. It is designed to be inclusive of smaller organisations who would not be able to take part in a RCT on their own. This pioneering approach to impact evaluation recognises that effective approaches to supporting young people are more meaningful when they’re shared across the sector rather than sitting with one organisation as a specific project or programme. 

It is also a chance to work with peers to explore approaches to mentoring in depth, learn from others, and build real insight into your own practice.

Selected organisations will also receive funding from the Centre for Youth Impact, supported by the Youth Endowment Fund, to cover the costs of their participation in the study.

Got a question about the research, project or your expression of interest?

Click here to visit our FAQs page. You can also submit clarification questions to by 23 September, which will be added to the FAQ document and answered in the informational webinars.

To attend an informational webinar, sign up using the following Eventbrite links:

How to apply

Expressions of interest are open from 13 September 2021 and should be submitted no later than 13 October 2021.


The briefing document for prospective delivery partner organisations can be found here.


This checklist provides further guidance on completing the expression of interest form.


The expression of interest form can be completed here.