An executive summary of the report, Building Evaluation Capacity of Violence Prevention Programs Across Illinois: A Quantitative and Qualitative Investigation

January 2005

In 1999, the Illinois Center for Violence Prevention (ICVP) and the Illinois Violence Prevention Authority (IVPA) collaborated with one another to establish the Evaluation Resource Institute (ERI).  The purpose of the ERI is to provide the violence prevention community in Illinois with the education, tools, resources and expertise to design and implement effective program evaluations.  To accomplish this, the ERI provides coaching, training and informational resources on program evaluation issues.  Coaching is individualized technical assistance for organizations to help design and implement evaluations tailored for a specific program.  In addition to coaching, the ERI provides workshops, a biannual electronic newsletter and a series of Tip Sheets with brief, practical information about how to plan and implement effective evaluations of violence prevention programs.

In June 2002, The Evaluation Resource Institute received a grant from the Michael Reese Health Trust to evaluate the work it is doing with Chicago-area agencies implementing violence prevention programs and the Illinois Center for Violence Prevention’s YouthPeace and SisterNet programs.  This report describes the major findings of their evaluation and the lessons learned including the recognition that organizations have varying levels of readiness and experience with evaluation and that building evaluation capacity is a long-term process of investing in an organization.  For addition information about the Illinois Center for Violence Prevention, its Evaluation Resource Institute and their resources, go to their website at http://www.preventingviolence.org/.

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