What is the process for evidencing outcomes when working with the community?

The principle objective of this series of projects was to learn about co-delivery of projects between council and community groups.  As a result, there was no  requirement for the project to demonstrate achievement of outcomes or to evidence sustainability in themselves.

To reduce bureaucratic burden, it was decided that project leads did not need to identify outputs and project deliverables at the outset, in favour of a more evolved organic approach to project delivery.  The only requirement tied to the funding provided was that progress and learning was recorded on the coop toolkit blog. Unfortunately, few project leads have been able to identify their learning about working with the council on the blog.

There is evidence of activity and success from these projects.  For example, Metropolitan Housing has agreed to fund youth activity at the St Martin’s community centre for a year, the poly tunnel has been sited on the Cherry Close on the Tulse Hill estate and is producing crop for local salad providers, and the BBQ bike has engaged  approximately 120 people and identified a number of skills shortage which will inform the development of future projects to address these skills-gaps. However, it may prove difficult to evaluate the outcomes or social value gained from these projects given that the absence of any criteria against which these successes and achievements can be measured.  This demonstrates that, while working with the community requires us to adapt our processes, this should not be to detriment of core values such as robustness, accountability and the need to evidence outcomes of projects.

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4 Responses to What is the process for evidencing outcomes when working with the community?

  1. A simple project management process is important that can change quickly if need be, everyone involved needs to buy into the timescale prototyping approach for it to work.

  2. There will be fewer outcomes but more outputs – perhaps bi weekly updates explaining how achievements are significant or contribute?

  3. lizbryanblog says:

    From Fiona: “It was great to use the coop toolkit to communicate our project progress, this way of working meant vision was possible – it was a liberating way of working”.

  4. lizbryanblog says:

    From Sarah: ” The blog is a good idea, as well as using a basic project planning template – but keep it simple”.

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