More than 50 communities have participated in California Healthy Cities and Communities since it began in 1988. The community-driven nature of the initiative poses challenges for identifying common outcomes across communities. Until recently, resources for a cross-site evaluation were limited and most of the evaluation activity was tailored to specific community projects. In 1997, a collaborative process was used to develop an evaluation framework to assess change in individuals, civic participation, organizations, interorganizational collaboration and the community as a whole. Recent funding from The California Endowment has enabled a special three-year planning and implementation initiative that includes a cross-site evaluation using this framework. Primary evaluation questions are: 1) What is the process of community development in each California Healthy Communities project? and 2) What changes have resulted from local communities participating in California Healthy Communities efforts? The evaluation design is a multiple case study with cross-case analysis. Each of the approximately 20 participating communities constitutes a case. Data collection methods include: document review, mailed self-administered surveys of coalition members, semi-structured personal and telephone interviews with key informants, focus groups, and observation of meetings or events. Nine of the communities have been designated as primary cases and evaluation staff make site visits to these communities for more intensive data collection. Detailed evaluation questions, concepts measured, measurement tools, and challenges encountered in the first year of the evaluation will be discussed in this presentation.
Learning Objectives: Discuss two challenges in evaluating healthy communities initiatives Describe one approach to evaluating healthy communities initiatives
Keywords: Evaluation, Community Building
Presenting author's disclosure statement:
Organization/institution whose products or services will be discussed: None
I have a significant financial interest/arrangement or affiliation with any organization/institution whose products or services are being discussed in this session.
Relationship: Have a contract to evaluate California Healthy Cities and Communities
The 128th Annual Meeting of APHA