Learning Alliance

From the early months of the project, we established a Learning Alliance – made up of parents with experience of drug use and drug treatment, affected family members, young people affected by parental drug use, substance use and child welfare practitioners, service managers and policy makers.

Learning Alliance methodology provides a framework for working with stakeholders in an active and engaged way, providing a context for mutual learning throughout all stages of a research project and the co-production of study outputs. 

In the blog How are we using Learning Alliances in the Relations study?, Hannah Carver, Co-Investigator, discusses the Learning Alliance approach within the Relations Study, and the pros and cons of online meetings.

Online meeting

The Learning Alliance played a vital role in this study. From 2020 to 2023 we convened 40 meetings with a total of 100 different family members and 115 professionals from England and Scotland. Discussions included topics such as people’s experiences of kinship care assessments, parenting assessments, child care planning meetings, discussion on parental rights, standards of care, and other key policies that shape the way professionals and services provide care for families, and how these are translated into everyday practice.

There was a final online meeting with the Learning Alliance on 12 September 2023 where results from the study were presented and ‘family stories’ were discussed.