Reframing Evaluation as a Tool for Social Justice & Community Empowerment
Transforming Communities‘ newest issue of “Catalyst Connections” provides excellent tools and resources about using evaluation to support communities to be empowered to take action. Participatory action research concepts such as collaboration and cooperation, democratization of knowledge, and participants are the experts guide evaluation efforts that support community-led change.
I found the discussion between Alisa Del Tufo of the Threshold Collaborative, Miho Kim of the DataCenter; Mimi Kim from Creative Interventions; Aimee Thompson-Aravelo of Close to Home, and Maria Elena Torre from The Public Science Project to be very helpful. For example, Miho Kim states
Our mission is to unlock power of knowledge for community change. We utilize a research justice framework to understand how the democratizing of research can strengthen grassroots organizing. Historically evaluation has not supported social justice frameworks so we need to re-define past models into one that becomes useful, powerful and liberating for communities.
And there are two activities (Five Questions in Five Minutes! and Values Leading to Positive Change) that provide concrete tools to use.
Click here to see this valuable resource.