Community Empowerment Research

We help churches, schools, and community organizations
measure needs of the people they serve,
set strategies to meet those needs, and
assess the impact of their work in service, training, evangelism, and outreach.

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Are You Making a Difference?

Improving Your Program

Most people who hear the phrase "program evaluation", refering to their program (if they know what "program evaluation means!), have an immediate negative reaction.  They become afraid.  Or angry.  Evaluation, to them, means "judgement" or "criticism".  Maybe a bad performance review.

It doesn't have to be!

The evaluative process uses scientific methods developed in the fields of psychology and sociology to find what is true.  The results, even if not encouraging, can be possitive.

In business, especially the tech field, "R&D" is a big deal.  Companies research and develop new products.  Sometimes (usually) their first try does not work.  They don't fire the engineers!  They learn from the failure and make changes.  They know what to change because they used scientific methods to test their ideas.  The results of their studies show them where the first idea was wrong and what to try to change.

The same process can be used in education.  Even nationally distributed programs do not fit perfectly into every school.  They need to be tweeked.  When your Gear Up program doesn't produce the results you want, how do you know what to change?  Do you guess?  Maybe you have an ESL/ELL program for middle-school students who have plateaued after years in your school system.  But these students improve only slightly.  Do you make a wild stab at what should be changed?  Or do you have solid experimental evidence of where the problem is?

Community Empowerment Research has the expertise and experience to help you set up reliable and accurate research on your program so that your results can be accurately used to improve your program.

We also help school districts articulate the details of their program model.  Schools rarely write out a detailed program model, but it is essential both to see what makes the program work and where changes might be best made.  Foundations also like program models as having one shows that you know what you are doing and have thought it through carefully.  A program model can greatly improve a grant request.

Proving Your Program's Worth to Funders

Funding sources—foundations, government organizations, etc.—require reports of how their money was spent.  When you can show not only what you paid for, but how it impacted students, you get a leg up on other schools seeking re-funding.

Submitting a new proposal?  Ideally, you would collect a year of data to show how well you serve your students (to fund an existing program) or how much your students need a new program.  Even with programs that have only run a year or two, the better you can show how well your program works, the better your chances are to win the grant.

We help with literature reviews on effectiveness of nationally marked programs and we help you set up collection processes to gather the data you need and we write the analytical report needed for your proposal or report.