Does the thought of doing a program evaluation give you heartburn?

Evaluation doesn’t have to be onerous.  Yes, it probably requires some extra work but, like balancing a checkbook, it is an essential activity for staying on top what’s really going on.  You don’t work as hard as you do to deliver a social or environmental program for the public good to not know how things are REALLY working and how you’re are actually moving the needle.  Things can look great on paper…but are they rolling out as you intend them to?

Every nonprofit or government organization running programs for the public good needs to know they are good stewards of the resources they are given – both for accountability and for expanding the pool of supporters that are fans of your work.  Flying blind is never a good idea – you need information collected systematically so you can make any needed choices to improve a program and/or have solid footing to back up claims of the “good work” you do.

Do any of these sound familiar?

It costs too much, we don’t have the money…
We don’t have time right now – we’re too busy…
We don’t really know how…
We’re a bit concerned about what we might learn…
We don’t want to look bad to our funders…
We know what we’re doing – we’ve always done the program this way and been successful…

We can help you!  We’ve done this a lot so we know how to design and implement evaluations so you get the high quality information you need for making decisions and promoting your work. And…we talk like program people (not academics…) because that’s where we’ve come from.  It’s not enough that we as evaluators understand what the results mean, our job is to make sure you understand your own results in plain English!

Types of Evaluation We Do

Developmental Evaluation

What:  Approach to assisting social innovators develop social change initiatives in complex or uncertain environments by collecting data and facilitating real-time feedback for decision-making.

When: Systems change or collective impact initiatives

Process Evaluation

What: Studies how program activities are delivered.  Looks at program, management and infrastructure together.  Helps determine the capacity of an organization to deliver on its promised outcomes.  Process evaluations help stakeholders see how a program outcome or impact was achieved.

When: Program improvement; fidelity of service model implementation – especially across multiple sites

Impact Evaluation

What: Assessment of changes that can be attributed to a particular intervention or program model. Seeks to answer cause-and-effect questions and demonstrate the changes are due to the program not outside factors.

When: Decisions on whether to expand, modify, or eliminate a particular program, funder accountability

Evaluation Services We Offer

There are many ways we can be of assistance, depending on your specific evaluation needs.

We can do the ‘full meal deal‘ – work with you to do everything soup to nuts for the evaluation – plan the evaluation, develop all the data collection tools and processes, collect and analyze the data, and write a report with recommendations.

We also provide ‘a la carte‘ services so you just get the specific support you need – if you are doing an internal evaluation, only want help with pieces of the evaluation process, or want coaching as you work with other evaluators.

Or, we also have a lot of experience providing evaluation training for nonprofit and government agency staff – both in person and via webinar.

Contact Susan Hyatt today to discuss your specific evaluation needs and/or request a proposal from us.

A La Carte Services We Offer

Evaluation Planning

We work with you to write the plan for your evaluation including purpose and type of evaluation, your specific research questions (what you want to know), identification of key stakeholders, data collection methodology(ies), data sources, and tools, data analysis and statistical testing, timelines, and reporting.

We help you collect the best possible data in the most economical way to meet your needs.

Data Collection

We develop or identify data collection tools (i.e., surveys, observation, focus group or interview protocols, pre/post-tests, etc.) and create procedures, systems and timelines to access the data…and then we get to it.

Our team can collect all the data or share responsibility with you for data collection and/or accessing information already collected.

Data Analysis

We can run the analysis for data you already collected or that we collect for you. Qualitative Data (the words): Content analysis to identify key themes and determine how often each theme is mentioned. Quantitative Data (the numbers): Descriptive and inferential statistical testing (using software such as SPSS or SAS) to summarize data from a sample or determine the probability that an observed difference between groups is a dependable one or one that might have happened by chance.

Past Evaluations We Have Done

The following is a list of selected program evaluations designed and implemented by Susan Hyatt and her team for a variety of nonprofit organizations and government agencies.

Disaster Services

  • American Red Cross – Northern Indiana Red Cross AmeriCorps Program, Ft. Wayne, IN
  • American Red Cross – National Preparedness and Response Corps, Washington, DC (process evaluation)
  • American Red Cross – National Preparedness and Response Corps, Washington, DC (impact evaluation)

Education

  • Arkansas Children’s Hospital, Home Instruction for Parents of Preschool Youngsters Program (HIPPY), Little Rock, AR
  • Arkansas Literacy Councils, Inc. – Arkansas Reads, Little Rock, AR
  • Boys and Girls Clubs – Neighborhood Afterschool Corps, Wayne County, IN
  • Pfeifer Kiwanis Camp – Alternative Classroom Experience, Little Rock, AR
  • Rogers Public School District – AmeriCorps Family Outreach, Rogers, AR
  • Scott County Partnership – Scott County AmeriCorps, Scottsburg, IN
  • South Arkansas Education Service Cooperative – Future Teacher Initiative, Monticello, AR
  • United Way of Porter County – Porter County Partnership, Valparaiso, IN
  • University of Arkansas Little Rock Children International– Next Move Corps, Little Rock, AR
  • University of Indianapolis – Harmony-Corps, Indianapolis, IN

Health

  • Indiana Department of Health – AmeriCorps Improving Health Throughout Indiana, Indianapolis, IN
  • Mid Delta Community Consortium – Arkansas Rural Development Network AmeriCorps Project, West Helena, AR
  • South Arkansas Education Service Cooperative – Coordinated School Health, Monticello, AR
  • University of Idaho – Idaho Healthcare for Children and Families AmeriCorps, Pocatello, ID
  • USAID, AVSC International Reproductive Health Services Program, Washington, DC

Service Learning

  • Franklin College – Building a Healthy Community, Franklin, IN
  • Indiana State University – Sycamore Service Corps, Terra Haute, IN
  • National Science Foundation – SSEC Service Learning in the Middle School Curriculum, Boulder, CO

Youth Development

  • Department of Justice, Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP) – Youth for Justice Program,
  • National Crime Prevention Council – Teens, Crime and the Community, Washington, DC
  • USAID/West Bank, RUWWAD Youth Empowerment Project, Jerusalem, Israel
  • Arkansas Service Commission, AmeriCorps Promise Fellows, Little Rock, AR

Other

  • American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) – Science, Engineering and Diplomacy (Postdoctoral) Fellowship Program, Washington, DC
  • Habitat for Humanity – Indiana HabiCorps, Indianapolis, IN
  • Legal Aid of Arkansas, Legal Aid for Arkansans, Jonesboro, AR
  • Idaho Department of Labor, Veterans Serving Veterans, Boise, ID
  • Student Conservation Association, Inc. – AmeriCorps Salmon-Challis National Forest Training Center, Challis, ID
  • William J. Clinton Foundation – Home Energy Affordability Loan Program, Little Rock, AR