Through six steps and 14 “trails,” the Program Planning & Evaluation Workbook from Strategic Prevention Solutions provides a strong foundation for prevention practitioners in their journeys to build impactful programs in their communities.
Through my work over the last several decades with the national PreventConnect community and providing technical assistance to sexual violence prevention practitioners in California, I have seen the thoughtful work by Wendi Seibold and the team at Strategic Prevention Strategies. Their experience is embedded in the development of this workshop that provides in one place a summary of the key steps in program planning and evaluation. I appreciate how this workbook integrates both as “program planning and evaluation are inherently intertwined and happen simultaneously.”
All too often program planning and evaluation are treated as domains of “experts” who use scientific terminology and complicated methodologies. However, this workbook provides simple easy-to-understand terms that are useful for actual community practitioners. Further, the workbook is designed to decolonize these processes:
“Decolonizing program planning and evaluation means carrying out activities with the consent and meaningful participation of all people who are impacted by the evaluation or program being implemented, with intentional effort to equalize power imbalances due to oppression.”
For example, the chapter on “culturally responsive evaluation and informed consent” (Trail 5) provides concrete ways to recognize power dynamics in evaluation and use culturally appropriate methods and tools for data collection, analysis, interpretation, and dissemination.
Starting with “Assessing Needs” through “making improvements to your plan,” the Workbook’s six steps and 14 “trails” provide guidance, examples, and questions to support program planning and evaluation. The Workbook provides clear descriptions of the alphabet soup of acronyms (SMART, IRB, CQI, etc.) used in program planning and evaluation.
Program Planning & Evaluation Workbook is a valuable tool that will strengthen how we plan, implement and evaluate prevention efforts.