Harnessing good intentions
The pressure is increasing for services to provide evidence of the outcomes and effectiveness of their programs. Often services will commission external evaluations of programs. However the program needs to be operating effectively, and the right information needs to be recorded and documented at the beginning of a program, for the evidence of outcomes and effectiveness to be proven in an evaluation.
Even though the primary focus is generally on the final outcome for the client, the operation and monitoring of the program is important, throughout all stages of the program, this is known as process evaluation. The benefit and value of process evaluation during a program are vital for achieving the goals and outcomes for both a program and the clients. Process evaluations monitor and measure how the program is progressing, and if not, what the barriers are.
Using the evaluation of an Aboriginal-specific community-based alcohol treatment program, as an example, the importance of a process evaluation will be discussed. Identifying benefits of the process evaluation, in improving a program’s delivery and direction, and then the outcomes for a program. This presentation will discuss and highlight both exemplary approach of the program and the barriers that were faced in practice by program.
The presentation will include a discussion of how a service can review their own program.