Social Action and Research Centre

We investigate how and why Tasmanians are affected by poverty and inequality. We use what we learn to advocate for changes that improve people’s lives.

 

Areas of focus

Child, youth and family wellbeing , Healthy ageing , Housing and homelessness & Financial wellbeing

Find out more

About us

  • How we work

    We listen, collaborate, research, advocate and educate.

    We carry out qualitative and quantitative social research

    • Our qualitative research centres on the lived experience of Tasmanians. It often features the voices of people who use Anglicare services and the expertise of our frontline workers.
    • Our quantitative research utilises data to demonstrate social trends.

     

    We engage in social action through advocacy.

    • Our advocacy involves briefing government and key stakeholders on our research and creating opportunities for networking and collaboration to achieve social change.
    • We are independent and values-based, allowing us to set our own priorities. Our multi-disciplinary team has expert knowledge across research, policy development, advocacy, quality improvement and evaluation.
  • Our ethical framework

    SARC has high ethical standards for our research. We conduct our research with honesty, integrity, respect for participants, appropriate acknowledgement of the role of others in research and the responsible communication of results.

    Anglicare Tasmania seeks approval from a National Health and Medical Research Council registered Human Research Ethics Committee for all research involving participants.

    Substantial research projects are overseen by a research reference group that is consulted about ethical safeguards.

Meet the team

  • Selina Claxton | Research Assistant

    Selina is a Research Assistant, editor and proofreader. Selina has worked with the SARC team on a casual basis for many years, recently publishing her own work in our Rental Affordability Snapshot.

    Selina is dedicated to improving the quality of written communication and is meticulous in her attention to detail.

  • Lindsey Fidler | Research and Policy Analyst

    Since 1990, Lindsey has drawn on her training as a sociologist to advocate for effective social policy and community programs for disadvantaged communities across the UK and in Tasmania. She has worked for community sector organisations, such as the Tasmanian Council of Social Service, the National Union of Students and Youth at Risk, and for government and their funded agencies, such as the Australian Clearinghouse for Youth Studies and the London Borough of Newham, where she has conducted and commissioned social research and led research, policy, campaigns and communications teams.

    She is interested in systemic change that levels people’s chances of creating the best life they can have. Her work in the UK informed and shaped welfare benefits, student finance and housing standards. At SARC, Lindsey has contributed to a range of research and policy areas, including Tasmanian family support.  Her current research work is looking at how to support older Tasmanians to age well at home when they have challenges related to hoarding and / or maintaining a healthy home.

    SARC Team: Lindsey Fidler

  • Teresa Hinton | Social Researcher (Casual)

    Teresa has extensive experience as a social researcher in Australia and the UK. Trained as an anthropologist she went on to use her skills in research institutes and centres, local government, the community sector, and advocacy and campaign organisations.

    Teresa developed a particular interest in how best to hear and strengthen the voices of people who use services to ensure their lived experience is acknowledged and used in legislative reform, policy development, service design, service delivery and evaluation.

    After working at SARC for 15 years, Teresa is now pursuing other interests but still supports SARC on a casual basis.

  • Dr Carmel Hobbs

    Carmel is an experienced qualitative researcher with a background in public health and community development. She has worked in community service organisations, academia and government in research, project coordination, and program implementation roles. For over 15 years Carmel has undertaken research with a primary focus on issues of equity across a broad range of sectors including education, housing, and public health. Experienced in action research and grounded theory methodologies, projects that have clear and obvious impact on communities and individuals drive her research agenda. Most recently she has drawn together her research with young people excluded from mainstream education and research with education and youth work professionals across Australia to train pre-service teachers to engage effectively with trauma-affected students in Tasmania and Victoria.

  • Ellen Nicholson | Coordinator – Social Action Research Centre

    Ellen is an experienced public health professional, and has managed a variety of health programs across the public sector within the UK and Australia. Ellen has worked in both service provision leading large teams and as a commissioner implementing new policy and practice.

    Ellen is interested in measuring, understanding and improving the impact that research can have for society and individuals.

  • Dr Catherine Robinson | Social Researcher

    Catherine is a sociologist with a broad interest in the relationship between vulnerability, justice and place. She has a long-held commitment to qualitative research and advocacy in the areas of homelessness, complex trauma and social care. Her current work focuses on understanding the experiences and support system needs of Tasmanian children and young people who experience high vulnerability, including unaccompanied homelessness. Her key publications on homelessness include Beside One’s Self: Homelessness Felt and Lived (Syracuse University Press) and (with Chris Chamberlain and Guy Johnson) Homelessness in Australia (NewSouth Publishing).  Catherine is also known for her work with Blackfella Films as Series Consultant and Co-Host of the SBS documentary Filthy Rich and Homeless.  She is on the Board of Directors, Homelessness Australia and Adjunct Associate Professor, School of Social Sciences, UTAS.

    SARC Team: Catherine Robinson

  • Dr Lisa Stafford | Social Researcher

    Dr Lisa Stafford is a social scientist, social planner and human geographer with 20 years’ experience in the fields of disability and community planning and works from a rights-based, place-based and anti-oppressive frameworks. Lisa’s areas of focus are: inclusive communities and spatial justice and social and economic participation including education to work transition for young people with disabilities. Lisa specialises in inclusive participatory research and engagements methods to ensure the ‘voices’ of all people, particular children and people with complex communication needs are heard. Lisa’s talent was awarded by gaining a highly competitive Australian Research Council – DECRA Fellowship 2019 in Inclusive community planning for people with disabilities in regional areas https://www.planninginclusivecommunities.com/. In addition to her work as an academic, Lisa has worked in practitioner, management and director roles in government and non-government organisations. Lisa continues in her part time Senior Lecturer/ARC DECRA Fellow at QUT. Lisa identifies as a disabled person and is a full member of Planning Institute of Australia (MPIA), Institute of Australian Geographers (IAG) and Disability Leadership Institute (DLI).

Latest publications

View all

#StayHome? A full report of the impact of Covid-19 on unaccompanied homeless children in Tasmania.

This is a full report from the research project #Stayhome. Drawing on the voices of community support workers, this research was designed to capture the wide-ranging impacts of mandatory stay at home and social distancing directives on children aged 10-17 who were alone and without a stable place to stay when Covid-19 reached Tasmania. Download

#StayHome? The impact of Covid-19 on unaccompanied homeless children in Tasmania

This is an interim report from the research project #Stayhome. Drawing on the voices of community support workers, this research was designed to  capture the wide-ranging impacts of mandatory stay at home and social distancing directives on children aged 10-17 who were alone and without a stable place to stay when Covid-19 reached Tasmania. Download

SARC’s Social Action Series #1 – A public health approach to ending unaccompanied child homelessness in Tasmania

This SARC Action Series paper provides a comprehensive public health approach to ending unaccompanied child homelessness. It guides the reader through a suite of actions to both prevent and intervene in children’s unique experience of being without a home and without access to the consistent care of a parent or guardian. Download

  • #1 A public health approach to ending unaccompanied child homelessness in Tasmania

    This SARC Action Series paper provides a comprehensive public health approach to ending unaccompanied child homelessness. It guides the reader through a suite of actions to both prevent and intervene in children’s unique experience of being without a home and without access to the consistent care of a parent or guardian.

    Download report

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