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Designing an organisation-wide Theory of Change that has a direct impact on the Young People Leap works with

Thursday 22nd November 2018
In 2014 we developed a Theory of Change to demonstrate how our work could obtain long-term results for the young people we work with. Since then, we have gone through a new strategic cycle and decided to focus programme delivery and design on young people in care, alternative education, the secure estate and in the community. We refer to these four areas as ecosystems." data-share-imageurl="https://leapconfrontingconflict.org.uk/sites/default/files/field/image/20181107_104942.jpg">

In 2014 we developed a Theory of Change to demonstrate how our work could obtain long-term results for the young people we work with. Since then, we have gone through a new strategic cycle and decided to focus programme delivery and design on young people in care, alternative education, the secure estate and in the community. We refer to these four areas as ecosystems. Theory of Change (ToC) 2018 Edition builds on the existing literature review, theoretical analysis, and feedback from the young people, youth organisations and statutory services we work closely with.    

How did we create ToC 2018 Edition? 

Step 1: Organised several across team, management and board level focus groups to create a vision – if we achieve our purpose, what would the world look like? 

Step 2:  Understand the context we’re working in, including market research, sector actor mapping, needs analysis and funding landscape  

Step 3: Define the activities and outcomes that need to be met for us to fulfil our purpose - to give young people the skills to manage conflict in their own lives, reduce violence in their communities and help lead our society - bearing in mind the context we’re working in. Alongside this, to check our assumptions and consider what we can and can’t do, and where we can work in partnership 

Step 4: Understand how we will know if we’ve reached our purpose and how we can measure this to inform practice

 

“We wanted to use the Leap-wide Theory of Change to challenge our thinking around what we want achieve and how we are going to get there. The first step was to align all existing monitoring and evaluation frameworks to ensure that we were measuring the right thing. This meant identifying the right indicators that denote success and the right tools to collect relevant data points”  Claudia Cheung, Data Impact Manager 

 

As a design, the flip booklet guides the readers through each section - from the operating context, activities intended impact, and the underlying logic behind how our activities can improve impact and influence practice across the youth sector. 

The intelligence gathered from organisation-wide ToC will help us to achieve greater impact in our work with young people. Looking ahead into next year we will create programme specific ToCs for projects working with young people in care, in prisons and Corporate Engagement Programmes. 

 

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Claudia will be leading a practical workshop at the Children and Young People Now conference on Wednesday 5th December 2018. 

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