ARTD have developed an evaluation framework, strategy and monitoring system for the NSW Department of Family and Community Services Community Builders program, funding community organisations for activities that build community strength and capacity. The Community Builders program has been developed in response to an emergent body of evidence suggesting that community strengthening is an effective way of reducing inequality and disadvantage.
The evaluation framework provides a basis for evaluation and monitoring. It is shaped by the program’s aims and objectives, informed by evidence about constitutes a strong community, and structured by program logic for Community Builders. The evaluation strategy aims to generate an evidence base for the program that can inform decisions by stakeholders at different levels. It sets out important strategic issues, key questions for evaluation, and feasible methods to address them.
ARTD have worked in collaboration with Community Services and the Local Community Services Association (LSCA) in developing the framework and monitoring system. Principal Consultant, Sue Leahy recently co-presented with these partners to the 2001 LCSA conference on the approach to and progress with this work.