We have found that nonprofits fill the shortage of staff with evaluation skills by hiring evaluation and data science consultants. This is limiting in several ways. There are many data scientists and program evaluators specializing in working with nonprofits. However, relying on their services is only a quick fix, not the long term solution that the social sector needs to implement data driven ways to measure their impact. Instead, data scientists should function as mentors and teachers to empower organizations who know their constituents and capacity best. Evaluate for Change empowers the nonprofit sector to take a more sustainable approach to program evaluation.
Evaluate for Change’s pedagogy is rooted in the idea that organizations need a more holistic approach to implementing a culture of evaluation, and we tailor our classes to accommodate that. We build on the fundamentals that most people received from their first introduction to statistics and reteach it in a way that is relevant and engaging. These are the skills that people in the social sector need to be data-savvy and understand the importance of using evaluation for advancing their organizational missions.