Scholarships and life skills workshops for individuals in recoveryImpacting students and young adults in recovery
For one leading non-profit foundation, a mission to change the lives of individuals with substance use disorders and students in recovery experienced rapid growth.
This ongoing evaluation gives real time insights into the impact life skills workshops and tuition scholarships has on the trajectory of participants. Spanning multiple states, institutions, and partner sites – a comprehensive evaluation plan needed to be designed and implemented.
The biggest opportunity was updating how data was collected on each of the foundation’s efforts, as well as introducing automation to the whole process. Live data was also not available in many instances, allowing decisions only to be made after individual analysis. While the foundation continues to grow at a rapid place, a new evaluation protocol and system was needed. Our team addressed three critical issues for Ammon:
- Improve data collection and real-time evaluation:
Collecting the right data, on the right platforms, and in the right way was critical to success in this project. Focusing on improving processes and updating systems allowed for more secure and frequent data collection, while the new systems also allowed for semi-automated real-time evaluation in conjunction with full-scale annual evaluation.
- Implement a quality improvement protocol:
With rapid growth comes increased opportunity to evaluate and modify processes to ensure the most impact. As part of the evaluation, we implemented quarterly QIP protocol that allowed Ammon to get feedback from their most important stakeholders – students, partner sites, and internal staff.
- Bring everything to a data-informed digital world:
Collecting, analyzing, and reporting out data in the cloud allows near real-time reporting with every new piece of data that comes in. With engaged stakeholders in multiple areas, bringing everything into the digital space improves decision making speed and change management strategies.
The VFR visionaries designed a robust evaluation plan that combined the best of digital, in-person research, and comprehensive research methods. Starting with a formative evaluation to learn from all of the foundation stakeholders, a semi-annual protocol using mixed-methods will allow the foundation to improve processes and measure impact across all of its programs and initiatives.
While this evaluation is on-going, we know that Ammon Foundation staff now have the benefit of generating real-time reports instantaneously whenever needed. Additionally, they are collecting the right data to answer their most important questions. This will allow the foundation:
- Reduced administrative time by 5-10 per quarter%
- Increase new partner sites for life skills workshops by 10-15% per year
- Implement real time change strategies for all programs