St Vincent de Paul commissioned ISSR to evaluate the impact of the NGO’s services in addressing needs through analysis of their internal data. Two questions formed the basis of this research: ‘What determines repeat requests for charity?’ and ‘Does the time spent providing charity impact on repeat requests for charity?’

Longitudinal data analysis revealed:

  • Housing instability: each additional address per person is associated with a 26% increase in charity requests per person
  • Charitable attention:  each additional hour spent delivering services to an individual corresponds to a 25% reduction in the average number of repeat charity requests per person

The research team, comprising Dr Cameron Parsell, Dr Christopher Ambrey, Dr Melanie Spallek, and Dr Richard Robinson, concluded with:

“An exciting possibility is that the approach of Vincentian volunteers may bridge the Catholic doctrine of charity with the professional social work theory of unconditional positive regard. The non-directive [person-centred] approach of charitable provision where opportunities can be developed…may help us understand why the longer volunteers spend with people the less likely they are to make repeat requests.”

Read more in the report’s Executive Summary.

To find out more about ISSR research and its partnership opportunities, contact us on

News & Events Category: 
19 July 2017