Digital Learners and Living Smart Homes evaluation published

Our fifteen month innovation project – Digital Learners and Living Smart Homes – funded by DCMS and delivered across West Essex by CVS Uttlesford, Rainbow Services and Voluntary Action Epping Forest has been formally evaluated by Prof. Steve Broome and his team, and the report is now available to read

Between January 2019 and March 2020, the three west Essex CVS organisations piloted a dual programme of digital learner sessions and the creation of Living Smart Homes – real world settings that could be visited to experience how low level and relatively low cost tech available in the marketplace can support the retention of independence in the home.   Using devices such as smart lightbulbs, plugs, and computer tablets with access to online services like shopping, prescriptions, concierge service and remote assistance, we have showcased how a small intervention can lead to huge results.

The evaluation (available below to download) summarises the benefits delivered through the project for different stakeholders, and then discusses the processes and impacts of the project, drawing on the evaluation data, a reflective workshop held with the project delivery team, and stakeholder interviews. Interviews were held with members of the project team, Citizens Online, companies providing the technologies used in Living Smart Homes, and stakeholders in local councils and organisations within the project catchment area.

The report also details key learning points cover aspects of the project that were an important part of its success, as well as suggested adjustments or expansions to the project’s delivery model based on the experience of the pilot.

Clive Emmett, CEO of CVS Uttlesford said;

“This has been a vitally important project to gain insight and evidence how digital can influence and support the daily lives of people across a wide range of experience, ability, circumstance and geography.   We have shown that simple solutions can help residents to be better connected to their families, communities and at the same time retain independence in their own homes.  The analysis by Professor Broome demonstrates the wide range of benefits derived from living with digital, but also highlights how in same situations it can be life saving.  We are keen to further develop this work and the findings of the evaluation give us a clear roadmap for the evolution of the scheme.”

Download the Report

To download a pdf copy of the report use this link:

Digital Learners and Living Smart Home

Get in Touch

For further information on digital assisted care, and how CVSU can support people to remain independent in their own homes, please contact CVSU Chief Executive Clive Emmett – 01371 878400 or email

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