Community capacity

A public health approach to cannabis (and other substances): Prevention, health promotion, surveillance and capacity building

In light of the Government of Canada’s announcement that it would introduce legislation to legalize and regulate cannabis, the Canadian Public Health Association (CPHA) has been funded by Health Canada to engage a range of individuals and organizations from the health, public health, and social service communities to enhance their knowledge of, and capacity to address issues related to cannabis and other substance use. The project is grounded in a public health approach to the legalization of cannabis. SRDC is working with CPHA to evaluate the project, with a particular focus on outcomes related to knowledge transfer, capacity-building, and stakeholder engagement.

Start-end date: December 2016 - November 2018
Sponsor: Canadian Public Health Association

The Role of Employment Social Enterprises in Supporting Transitioning Youth

The BC Centre for Employment Excellence and its partner, the Community Social Planning Council of Greater Victoria, are conducting a demonstration project to evaluate the role of Employment Social Enterprises (ESEs) in supporting the labour market transitions of youth facing barriers to developing their career potential. The project partners with local social entrepreneurs, employment service providers and employers to generate work placements in new or existing ESEs that focus on employing barriered youth, giving youth participants the opportunity to gain valuable work experience and skill development that is in line with local labour market opportunities. This project is designed to fill a gap in knowledge with regard to understanding the role that transitional placements in ESEs can play in improving employment outcomes for at-risk youth.

Start-end date: February 2016 - January 2019
Sponsor: British Columbia Ministry of Social Development and Social Innovation

Determinants of Participation in Indigenous Labour Market Programs

The primary goal of this project is to identify barriers to participation in ESDC Indigenous Labour Market Programs: the Aboriginal Skills and Training Program; the Skills and Partnership Fund; and the First Nations Job Fun (joint project with IAND). The project includes: a document review and environmental scan of program evaluations and recent policy research; key informant interviews with program agreement holders; and an exploratory analysis of program administrative data.

Start-end date: February 2016 - March 2016
Sponsor: Employment and Social Development Canada

BGCC National Youth Outcomes Consultation

As part of a longstanding commitment to quality programming and continuous improvement, Boys and Girls Clubs of Canada developed its Model for Success framework to describe the common features of Boys and Girls Clubs’ environments, the core programming they offer, and the desired positive outcomes for children and youth that drive these efforts. To further this work, SRDC was engaged to help BGCC develop a plan for evaluating program outcomes at a national level. This project includes background research, interviews, feasibility assessment, and development of options and recommendations.

Start-end date: December 2015 - April 2016
Sponsor: Boys and Girls Clubs of Canada

Evaluation of the Active Outdoor Play Strategy

'Active outdoor play' is unstructured and of varied intensity, takes place outdoors with natural materials, and involves an element of risk (e.g., due to the height, speed, context, or tools involved). A wide range of sectors and organizations has recently begun to promote active outdoor play as a means of correcting a perceived over-emphasis on safety/risk and injury prevention, as well as promoting healthy child development in the long term.

The aim of the Lawson Foundation’s Outdoor Play Strategy is to better understand how to support Canadian communities to foster children’s opportunities for outdoor play; in other words, how to create environments that enable – rather than hinder – such play. The Strategy is designed to support the development and implementation of a variety of creative ideas across sectors and a range of contexts, including community programs, services, and supports as well as policy and research initiatives. SRDC conducted an evaluation of the Strategy to develop understanding about how and why funded initiatives experience success, and to what degree. The evaluation includes information about both implementation and early impacts of the Outdoor Play Strategy, at three levels: individual projects/grantees; the collective cohort of grantees; and the broader landscape of stakeholders involved in outdoor play. In addition to examining multiple levels of operation and impact, the project takes a developmental evaluation approach – one that is flexible, future-oriented, and focused more on learning and performance improvement than on narrow definitions of merit and accountability.

Lawson Foundation notice

 

Start-end date: November 2015 - April 2019
Sponsor: Lawson Foundation

Supporting Analyses of Cost Effectiveness for Innovation Strategy Interventions

Through its Innovation Strategy, the Public Health Agency of Canada funds and supports promising interventions to improve population health and reduce health inequalities, particularly in terms of achieving healthier weights and promoting mental health. To strengthen these public health interventions' readiness for scale-up, SRDC developed an approach that provided information on various ways to understand project costs and financial valuation of benefits, and considerations for determining which approach to economic assessment would be most appropriate and feasible for them. These approaches were selected with respect to best practices for conducting economic assessment, consistency with the IS program's focus on equity and population health, and leveraging the extensive data on IS projects' processes and outcomes.

Start-end date: November 2015 - March 2016
Sponsor: Public Health Agency of Canada

Mapping Experiences with Inclusive Employment

A pilot project delivered in partnership with researchers at UBC to evaluate the use of an online mapping tool to document positive experiences with inclusive employment for 30-35 people with developmental disabilities (self-advocates) across BC. The project is designed to collect first-hand knowledge from self-advocates, their families, employers and service providers regarding the factors that contribute to positive, inclusive employment for individuals with developmental disabilities. It informs the BC Centre for Employment Excellence (CfEE), its partners and other stakeholders about best practices in providing supports and creating inclusive workplaces for individuals with developmental disabilities. Based on the success of the pilot, the CfEE and its partners continue to host the map and explore options for extending this approach to other populations of job seekers facing significant barriers in the labour market. This project is managed by the BC Centre for Employment Excellence, a division of SRDC.

Start-end date: November 2013 - September 2015
Sponsor: British Columbia Ministry of Social Development and Social Innovation (with financial support from Community Living British Columbia)

Evaluation of the Healthy Eating After School project

Healthy Eating After School (HEAS) is a pilot project funded by the Ministry of Health and implemented by the YMCA of Greater Vancouver. SRDC was contracted to conduct the evaluation. The purpose of the project is to create an environment that supports healthy eating in the after-school care setting. The objectives of the project are to: 1) improve the knowledge and confidence of after-school care staff in healthy eating and in food skills and their confidence to implement these; 2) develop and implement healthy eating policies/guidelines for an after-school care setting; 3) engage parents of children in after school care, in implementing and maintaining children’s healthy eating behaviours; and 4) increase the interest and ability in food skills for children attending after-school care programs.

Start-end date: July 2013 - March 2014
Sponsor: YMCA of Greater Vancouver

Summative Evaluation of HealthLink BC – Phase Two

HealthLink BC (HLBC) provides BC residents with 24-hour, 365-day access to medically approved information and advice. The aim of the second phase of this project is to conduct a summative evaluation of HLBC client facing services. This includes examining awareness, use, satisfaction, outcomes, impacts, and cost-benefit associated with the HLBC programs and services.

Start-end date: December 2012 - June 2016
Sponsor: BC Ministry of Health, HealthLink BC

School engagement in middle and secondary schools – Phase II

Pilot project for testing educational practices that encourage school engagement among middle and secondary school students. This second phase of the study focuses primarily on creating the measures required for evaluating implementation of the educational practices tested during Phase I of the project. The tools were developed in close collaboration with stakeholders from four schools in the Ottawa region, in particular school board and teaching staff members, as well as students. The third phase of the project aims to evaluate the effect of educational practices on student school engagement. To achieve this, student engagement is examined based on the degree of implementation of educational practices.

Start-end date: October 2012 - April 2013
Sponsor: Conseil des écoles publiques de l’Est de l’Ontario

Foreign Credential Recognition (FCR) Loans Pilot Project

Launched in 2012 by then Human Resources and Skills Development Canada, the FCR Loans Pilot Project targets internationally-trained workers who are unable to or experience difficulty in accessing traditional lending sources mainly through financial institutions. The project took place in 9 sites across Canada wherein 11 microloan program models were piloted. SRDC designed and implemented a research framework seeking to: (1) draw lessons learned from the diversity of models tested and the contexts in which they are tested; (2) determine whether the microloan programs have the desired effect and under what conditions; (3) conduct a costs analysis of the FCR Loans Pilot Project; and (4) explore whether the microloan models can be sustained in the longer term.

Start-end date: February 2012 - January 2015
Sponsor: Employment and Social Development Canada

Evaluation of the 2009-13 Agreement for the Development of Francophone Arts and Culture in Canada

In collaboration with the Department of Canadian Heritage, SRDC developed and conducted an evaluation of the objectives and issues of the Agreement for the Development of Francophone Arts and Culture, as well as of its four management and collaborative mechanisms. This evaluation identifies findings on processes, direct and indirect results, as well as lessons learned from the Agreement. These findings support recommendations on potential areas for improvement to this cooperation mechanism as well as inform the future direction of the Agreement.

Start-end date: January 2012 - August 2012
Sponsor: Canadian Heritage

Summative Evaluation of HealthLink BC – Phase One

HealthLink BC (HLBC) provides BC residents with 24-hour, 365-day access to medically approved information and advice. The goal of the first phase of the project is to develop an evaluation framework to conduct a comprehensive evaluation of the HLBC services that examines awareness, use, satisfaction, outcomes, impacts, and cost-benefit associated with the HLBC programs and services.

Start-end date: December 2011 - December 2012
Sponsor: BC Ministry of Health, HealthLink BC

School Engagement in Middle School

A pilot project aiming to develop, apply, and test teaching strategies that enhance school engagement in middle school students. The existing strategies are identified based on document and literature reviews. In addition, new strategies are developed using a motivational framework extensively applied to the school setting. The strategies are then tested in two classrooms in a school located in the Ottawa area.

Start-end date: September 2011 - January 2012
Sponsor: Conseil des écoles publiques de l’Est de l’Ontario

Community Maturity Model

With this project, SRDC provided technical assistance to HRSDC to build on prior work done to develop a Community Maturity Model (CMM), a tool that is designed to allow Official Language Minority Communities (OLMCs) to assess their own capacity for human resource and community economic development. SRDC reviewed and revised the CMM tool to make it more relevant to the Enabling Fund’s Performance Measurement Framework, and to the role of recipient organizations within their communities. SRDC’s work also focused on making the tool clearer, more practical, and user-friendly.

Start-end date: March 2011 - April 2011
Sponsor: Human Resources and Skills Development Canada

EmbraceBC Program Evaluation

The Welcoming and Inclusive Communities Dialogue Initiative is a program component of the EmbraceBC. SRDC carried out a process evaluation of dialogues convened to encourage and sustain local community engagement on themes related to multiculturalism, anti-racism, and welcoming and inclusive communities in BC.

Start-end date: December 2010 - March 2011
Sponsor: B.C. Ministry of Citizens’ Services – BC Stats

Social Partnerships Roundtable

Participation in an experts’ roundtable on the development and financing of the social economy.

Start-end date: November 2010 - November 2010
Sponsor: Human Resources and Skills Development Canada

Successful Programs That Were Effective at Economically Integrating Immigrants Into Official Language Minority Communities (OLMCs)

This research project seeks to understand the support and services available or needed for newly arrived families in Official Language Minority Communities to help them settle and adapt to life in Canada and to find gainful employment. It also seeks to identify promising ideas that can be implemented and evaluated in the Canadian OLMC context.

Start-end date: November 2010 - April 2011
Sponsor: Human Resources and Skills Development Canada

Successful Programs That Were Effective in Developing Entrepreneurship Skills Among Youth and Contributed to Sustainable Settlement of Youth in Official Language Minority Communities (OLMCs)

This research project focuses on understanding and developing the role of youth entrepreneurship as a strategy to encourage the sustainable settlement of youth in Official Language Minority Communities. It also seeks to identify promising ideas that can be implemented and evaluated in the Canadian OLMC context.

Start-end date: November 2010 - April 2011
Sponsor: Human Resources and Skills Development Canada

Multisite evaluation of the Francophone Youth Inclusion Program (YIP)

A multisite evaluation of a youth crime prevention program entitled Youth Inclusion Program (YIP). The Francophone YIP seeks to reduce the number of arrests, truancy, and school expulsions for a group of high-risk youths within the same community. To achieve its objectives, the program offers youths, by way of an individualized intervention plan, a combination of sports, education, training, and interventions on subjects such as health and drugs. The evaluation of the Francophone YIP is spread over five years and was conducted in Montreal (Quebec) and in Salaberry-de-Valleyfield (Quebec). SRDC conducted a process evaluation, an impact evaluation, a costs analysis and a relevancy evaluation.

Start-end date: November 2010 - December 2016
Sponsor: Public Safety Canada

Petits pas à trois – Monitoring System

To provide advice and technical assistance with the development of a program monitoring system with the objectives of ensuring that the program delivered is of high quality and that the training needs of early childhood educators are identified and addressed in a timely fashion.

Start-end date: October 2010 - July 2011
Sponsor: Conseil des écoles catholiques du Centre-Est de l’Ontario

The Community Service Learning Program

SRDC was commissioned to conduct the summative evaluation of the University of Ottawa’s Community Service Learning (CSL) program. CSL is an innovative pedagogical model which allows students to contribute to their community by doing volunteer work that is related to their program of study. This evaluation of the CSL program aims to discover the benefits experienced by participating students, professors, and community partners, as well as to identify ways to improve program delivery and positive results.

Start-end date: September 2010 - June 2011
Sponsor: University of Ottawa

Community Action for Seniors Independence – Evaluation Framework

Workshop facilitation with government officials to develop a logic model for a project delivering non-medical support and services to frail seniors.

Start-end date: September 2009 - September 2010
Sponsor: United Way of the Lower Mainland

Petits pas à trois

Impact and outcome evaluation of a new preschool program targeting minority Francophone preschoolers and their families.

Start-end date: July 2009 - June 2010
Sponsor: Conseil des écoles catholiques du Centre-Est de l’Ontario

Comité d’action local des Promenades de Gatineau

Funded by the Fondation Lucie et André Chagnon as part of an activity of the Québec Enfants’s initiative, the Comité d’action local des Promenades de Gatineau (CAL) is a partnership between local community groups that aims to answer the needs of children, and their families, living in the Gatineau community via different activities. SRDC helped refine the logic model of the six activities already in place to define their objectives and their expected impacts. SRDC designed an evaluation plan and proposed tools to measure the implementation of the activities and follow children’s development. A summative evaluation identifies which activities were the most promising for the children and their families.

Start-end date: May 2009 - July 2010
Sponsor: Fondation Lucie et André Chagnon and Société de gestion du fonds pour le développement des jeunes enfants

Evaluation of the BC Healthy Living Alliance (BCHLA) Initiatives

BCHLA is a provincial coalition of organizations working together to improve the health of British Columbians. The coalition has implemented 16 initiatives in the health promotion and population health areas, designed to deliver activities across the province in three themes: Healthy Eating, Physical Activity, and Tobacco Reduction. In the first phase of the evaluation project, SRDC conducted evaluability assessments for each initiative as well as the clusters or themes to produce evaluation plans and budgets for “evaluable” projects and clusters. In the second phase, SRDC evaluated 6 of the 16 initiatives, as well as a case study of the Community Capacity Building Strategy and provided technical assistance to the other BCHLA initiatives that were not part of the evaluation project. Some of the evaluations involved vulnerable populations, such as Aboriginal communities.

Start-end date: July 2007 - May 2010
Sponsor: Michael Smith Foundation for Health Research
Read More

Expert Advice and Participation in HRDC Working Group on Communities

Start-end date: November 2002 - November 2002
Sponsor: National Secretariat on Homelessness

Understanding the Early Years

A study of community process focusing on how information was absorbed, interpreted, and acted upon by community members.

Start-end date: February 2002 - June 2005
Sponsor: Social Development Canada

Community Employment Innovation Project

The evaluation of a multi-year demonstration project that tested the impact on individuals and their communities of an alternative form of income transfer for the unemployed with the aim to increase their employment prospects while simultaneously strengthening the capacity of local communities.

Start-end date: January 1999 - March 2008
Sponsor: Human Resources and Social Development Canada and Nova Scotia Department of Community Services
Read More