Willem’s research interests include LGBTQ+ and youth populations; health, wellbeing, and mental health; help-seeking behaviours; digital mental health interventions; and, community-based outreach work.
Assessing sexual behaviours in children and young people aged 13 – 18 in the UK
- ESRC New Investigators Grant (£300,000), June 2022 – June 2024, Research Fellow.
This research intends to explore what constitutes normal, problematic, abusive and violent sexual behaviours in children and young people in the UK aged 13-18. This data will then be used to develop an assessment tool for professionals working with children and young people. This is in collaboration with Brook Charity and the Lucy Faithfull Foundation.
With Dr Sophie King-Hill (Principal Investigator).
Project website available here.
LGBTQ+ Young People in Social cAre (LYPSA) project
- Funded by What Works for Children’s Social Care (£267,000), April 2021 – March 2023, Research Fellow.
The LYPSA project sought to understand and improve the social care experiences of LGBTQ+ young people in England. The project has now concluded and included three foundational studies:
- A systematic scoping review of the international evidence base concerning the health and wellbeing experiences of LGBTQ+ young people in foster and residential care;
- A qualitative interview study providing the first in-depth analysis of LGBTQ+ young people’s residential care experiences in England; and,
- The first randomised controlled trial testing the effectiveness of an LGBTQ+ e-learning training module for children’s social workers in England.
The project included collaboration and co-production with a young advisors’ group who have lived experiences of social care and identify as LGBTQ+, as well as stakeholder groups connected to LGBTQ+ young people in social care.
With Dr Jason Schaub (Principal Investigator) and Professor Paul Montgomery (Co-investigator).