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Hints for Program Evaluation: A Funder’s Advice
Continuing our examination of evaluation, we wanted to offer our readers a funder’s perspective. S&W Consultant Michelle Eisenberg sat down with Helen Davis Picher, Director of Evaluation & Planning for the William Penn Foundation, to learn more. She described how funders’ interest in evaluation (on the part of grantees, as well as larger self-evaluation) has remained strong over the past two decades, as many foundations are trying to be more strategic in their grantmaking. “The resources we have are scarce relative to the problems we are trying to solve,” she said. While Ms. Picher’s comments represent the perspective of one funder, she offered some lessons and insights that are universally applicable:
What can grantees expect to gain by conducting evaluation of their projects and programs?
How would you recommend an organization begin implementing a comprehensive evaluation function?
Evaluation findings can be complex. Do you have any advice for presenting results?
The William Penn Foundation, founded in 1945 by Otto and Phoebe Haas, is dedicated to improving the quality of life in the Greater Philadelphia region through efforts that foster rich cultural expression, strengthen children’s futures, and deepen connections to nature and community. In partnership with others, the Foundation works to advance a vital, just, and caring community. Learn more about the Foundation online at www.williampennfoundation.org.
Schultz & Williams is a national consulting firm based in Philadelphia providing management, fundraising and marketing consulting for nonprofit organizations, along with full-service direct marketing, database and creative/production services.