Saturday, April 30, 2011

MISRGO Empowerment Evaluation Workshop April 28, 2011

MISRGO Empowerment Evaluation Workshop to Build Capacity and Reduce Tobacco Consumption.  We conducted an engaging and productive workshop on April 28, 2011 in Pine Bluff.  The workshop was held at the Arkansas River Education Co-op.
Dr. Fetterman provided an overview about empowerment evaluation for new members, reminding everyone that they are in charge of conducting the evaluation and that the three empowerment evaluators are facilitators and coaches to keep it rigorous and on track.

We also briefly discussed the MISRGO grantee evaluation dashboard that we developed and agreed to implement.  The dashboard is used to let everyone know what our goals are, our benchmarks (or steps along the way), and our actual performance, so we can compare our performance each quarter with our benchmarks (or planned mini-goals for each quarter).

This is what the data look like when transformed into a bar chart.  It makes it easy for us to see our progress towards our goals.  If we are not making progress, then the chart is like a red flag.  It lets us know it is time to ask our colleagues for help with alternative strategies or to rethink the scale of our efforts.

Empowerment evaluation coaching:  Beverly Tremain is facilitating the section of the session about reporting and how we can improve on our reporting format.

Here is Linda Delaney facilitating a session on goals with her grantees.

Here are the three coaches together (what a team):  

The session show stoppers were the grantees themselves. They presented their accomplishments.  One accomplishment involved passing a new law - Act 811-  that extended the protection to children, concerning second hand smoke.  (Contact Katherine Donald at the Coalition for a Tobacco Free Arkansas for more details.)

Other educational accomplishments included getting our tobacco prevention message across to youth and adults using YouTube videos (Tyler Clark, Page DanielBruce Lockett) and radio broadcasts (Kionti Traylor).

Tyler Clark, Project Coordinator 
NWA Tobacco Free Coalition
(click on picture below to view YouTube Video)

Also see Page Daniel and Tyler Clark's YouTube video of their 2011 Survey of Registered Voters - used to determine the level of support for their smoke free campaign.  (A brief article about their work and use of this information is provided online in ozarks unbound.)

We also have a host of additional grantees using social media to get the message across.

Kionti produced her own radio broadcast
(see below for a video based on the radio broadcast)


Kionti Traylor  Garland County CARES Quapaw House

Our grantees have also used local television to get the message across.  Contact Carolyn Yarborough for more information about her television advertisements.


Our grantees have used extensive use of surveys to determine attitudes toward banning smoking from bars and used the data to successfully educate the public about the need for smoke free environments. They are sharing their data including the Fayetteville Arkansas Air Quality Monitoring Study conducted by the Roswell Park Cancer Institute.  These kinds of studies have demonstrated how employees and patrons in Fayetteville bars are being exposed to harmful levels of air pollution.  They have also won awards for their work.

Page Daniel from Fayetteville
NWA Tobacco-Free Coalition

We also continue to collect our own data about our process and our efforts.  We continue to use the dots to help us prioritize what we want to focus on and evaluate at this time.  Participants help record the data and analyze it as well (typically using Excel for most of the ratings).

After using the dots to prioritize what we want to evaluate as a group at this time, we rate the selected activities on a 1 (low) to 10 (high) point scale.  Then we engage in a dialogue about the ratings.  We provide evidence for our ratings and learn how the reasons we give provide us with the most efficient path toward planning for the future and solving our problems.  In other words, the reasons we give for our ratings guide us toward the solutions, e.g. if communication is a problem and specifically the lack of an agenda is listed we know we better start using agendas.  It makes our problem solving more efficient and focused.

It is a team effort. 

 The entire group is engaged and productive.  We are also sharing data and resources across agencies and grantees to make the entire group stronger and more effective.  We have learned that if one group does well it makes us all look good. If one group falls behind it hurts the overall portrait or picture of what we are trying to accomplish.

 The excitement of the day was infectious.  The group is positive, reinforcing, and a pleasure to be with now and throughout the year.