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Why Evaluate?

It is important to evaluate the outcome of your community engagement projects for some of the following reasons:

  • Provide a means to demonstrate to the community the value of the project and the participants work
  • Gathers constructive feedback from partners, participants, artists, and community members that can be used to improve future community engagement projects
  • Meets funders requirements to ensure that public/private funds have been effective in achieving the goals of the project
  • Provides both qualitative (experiences, stories) and quantitative results of the project
  • Builds a body of evidence over time that shows your organizations’ contribution to the community as well as ensuring that your community engagement program will be able to continue to attract partners and other resources.

Project Monitoring and Evaluation

Even projects that are well designed, comprehensively planned and resourced will face challenges. These challenges can take at any point in the life of the project.  The time to develop a monitoring and evaluation plan is after the project is approved for funding but before the start-up of the project activities.  Strong project design makes it easier to create and align monitoring and evaluation.   The plan usually includes the following information:

  • What indicators are being monitored and tracked?
  • What information is needed to track the indicator?
  • What data collection methods are appropriate and simple?
  • Who will collect the data?
  • How often will we collect the data?
  • Who will receive and use the data?

The most important consideration should be the usefulness of the data.  When identifying indicators, the project team should ask:

  • What will this information tell us?
  • What are the expected improvements in decision-making resulting from this data?

To be able to monitor and evaluate the project, it is important to document the process from beginning to end.



The House Concert - Cultural Diversity


Why - community engagement with youth and community Choreographer Keira Martin


Dance Across The North

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