The Evaluation Toolkit for Community
Youth Programmers Report is now available
online and for downloading
Hands Across Canada:
Building Effective Programs to Help Youth is
a nationwide initiative by the
Offord Centre for Child Studies to strengthen
community programming for children and youth.
in its second year, the project involves 37
and youth organizations from coast to coast offering
services from literacy skill-building and employment
readiness to the integration of homeless and disadvantaged
youth into mainstream community activities.
Centre is helping the organizations evaluate
their programs, identify strengths and weaknesses,
and incorporate most promising practices to engage
and assist youth. A national conference has been
held each year to give the groups an opportunity
to network, share their experiences and provide professional
development relevant to children’s programming
and evaluation. The goal is to provide valuable,
constructive feedback and ensure that promising practices
are shared among programs.
In return for their knowledge
and assistance, Offord Centre researchers are gathering
that will help them identify the techniques and
approaches used by community programs that provide
benefit for youth.
“We hope to provide systematic ways to help programs
measure their effectiveness, ensure transparency
and accountability, and learn from the experience
of others in the field,” said Ellen Lipman,
a child psychiatrist and Offord Centre researcher
who is involved in the project.
“By perpetuating that learning at the grassroots,
our efforts will benefit children and communities
from coast to coast.”
Hands Across Canada is
supported by a $200,000 donation over two years
by Sun Life Financial
on behalf of
its employees and Clarica advisors. This year’s
grant provides for the creation of an evaluation
toolkit, which is being made available on the
Offord Centre website to assist organizations
the impact of their own programming.