This summary reports the results of an independent community engagement and research study carried out as part of a Needs Assessment for Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic (BAME) groups within West Sussex.

The work was delivered by The Young Foundation, using a participatory approach with community researchers. Over 100 people from BAME communities were engaged with expert support from The Young Foundation. Community researchers also contributed to the analysis of the data and reviewed the final report.

The research had four main aims:

  • to obtain a detailed understanding of the wellbeing and health and social care needs of the BAME population
  • to identify gaps in service provision and the extent to which existing services meet the needs of the population
  • to determine the barriers and enablers to accessing services and exploring what changes are required in order for those barriers to be overcome
  • to identify priorities for action and indicators for monitoring progress towards change.

The findings and recommendations are summarised under four key areas of focus: Life and wellbeing in West Sussex; Using health and social care services; Tackling taboos (mental health and domestic abuse); and Community assets.

Needs Assessment

In the most recent comprehensive joint strategic needs assessment (JSNA), it was highlighted that there was an increasing ethnically diverse population in West Sussex, especially in younger groups. Minority ethnic groups were identified as having specific or additional health needs and so the West Sussex Health and Wellbeing Board asked the Public Health and Social Research Unit (PHSRU) to conduct a needs assessment for Black, Asian and minority ethnic (BAME) groups. The aim of this work was to identify overarching as well as specific issues in minority ethnic groups; to understand what life is like for these groups and communities living in West Sussex; what their needs are and which of these require commissioned services or which of these the communities provide for themselves; how they access a range of existing services and whether these services are currently meeting their needs; and what challenges and barriers there are in accessing services or participating in life in West Sussex.

By using a number of methods to gather this information, this work will provide an overall picture of life, health and wellbeing in West Sussex for people in BAME groups; and most importantly, identify where there are opportunities for improving their health and wellbeing.