Are you feeling unsure about some piece of your work? Are you unsure whether you need support with planning or evaluation? Have you been told you need to do an evaluation but are not sure where to start?
We can meet with you to help you decide on your next steps.
Theory of Change & Logic Models
The best evaluation and strategic planning can be done when we understand why we expect our work to lead to change. Theory of change and logic models help us get an explicit understanding of the work we do and the outcomes we want to see. A theory of change can be done for an individual project or program, or for an organization as a whole.
We aim to help through:
Clarifying language used to describe activities and their expected outcomes;
Getting a better understanding of how and why activities lead to expected results; and
Exploring the best way to describe these relationships in order to encourage shared understanding among program staff and stakeholders.
Evaluation is about gathering information and knowing what changes can be made to better achieve your goals. Evaluation does not have to be overly difficult or mysterious, and some of the best learning comes from people examining their own work with a critical and curious eye. On the other hand, evaluation can be a different way of thinking. It takes time and skill to implement it in the most useful way possible.
Bringing in an outside evaluation consultant can be helpful in terms of making sure your evaluation is systematic, user-friendly and rigorous.
This process involves:
Enhancing understanding of your organization’s context, the program being evaluated, and the purpose of the evaluation or research study;
Identifying key questions to be answered through evaluation or research study; and
Helping ensure that quality information is collected and that results are summarized in a way that is easy to understand and useful for your organization.
The most important part of evaluation and strategy is answering questions of "so what?" and "what next?". We want to make sure that evaluation and strategic planning reports do not just sit on your shelf gathering dust.
We make clear suggestions for interpreting information and work with you to decide how to use that information to move forward.
Facilitation & Planning
We assist small or large groups to communicate effectively, identify problems and solutions, gain consensus on complex or contentious issues, and work toward common goals. This includes facilitation of processes such as identifying a theory of change and strategic planning at the organizational level.
Facilitation support includes:
Working with your group or organization to understand the purpose of the meeting or process that requires facilitation and design a method that best meets those needs;
Working with staff or partners to communicate effectively with all participants to ensure meeting objectives are achieved; and
A dynamic and enthusiastic voice to guide meetings.
Evaluation and research is a powerful tool, and maybe even more powerful when it is harnessed by staff actually doing the programming or planning. At Tapestry, we are passionate about using a transparent and participatory approach for all evaluation, to help encourage the learning of those we work with. We also offer more formal capacity building and training.
NEW in 2019: Tailored course for Social Impact Planning and Evaluation
How can we tell if we are making a difference? How are our communities different because of the work we do? How do we know if our work is doing what we hope it will do?
Tapestry Evaluation and Strategy is offering a tailored capacity building course for non-profits, government, health authorities, social enterprises and anyone else who wants to make changes that will positively affect people, the community, society or the natural world. The course will be especially useful for those working toward impact that is harder to define and measure (for example community development, systems change, health promotion and prevention).
Cost: $3600 plus tax. This includes about 20 hours of instruction, and about 20 hours of preparing deliverables tailored to your organization. We would work with your organization to specify which objectives and deliverables are most useful and feasible for your work.
Instruction: Instruction can be delivered in person and/or by videoconference. Instruction and exercises are tailored to your organization. Instruction hours blend theory for the main concepts with understanding practical tools for applying the concept to your work. Participants will choose an exercise for each module based on what is most helpful for their work, followed by feedback and discussion of improvements and next steps for applying the concepts. It is suggested that organizations allot 3-6 months for the course, but timelines can be adjusted to meet your needs.
1. Increase your capacity to understand your work at a systems-level or sector-level, as a foundation to planning or validating the best strategies to achieve the impact you hope to see. Suggested exercise: draft systems map or situational analysis.
2. Increase your capacity to understand and describe the logic model/theory of change for your work. In other words, increased capacity to understand how and why activities or programs help bring about the changes you hope to see. Suggested exercise: draft logic model/theory of change.
3. Increase your capacity to assess whether meaningful change has happened, how your work contributes to meaningful changes, what course corrections are needed and how to communicate about your impact. Suggested exercise: draft evaluation framework/ measurement plan.