Purpose of the evaluation: Unbound aims to have a sustainable impact on the lives of Unbound program participants with ongoing positive results after participation in the program has ended. In 2013, Unbound initiated a global evaluation with former sponsored members and scholars students with the purpose of exploring the long term impact of the program. The evaluation explores if and how sponsored persons and their families walk a path out of poverty through unearthing the intended and unintended results of participating in the Unbound program as told by the participants in the program themselves.
Methods and design: The evaluation was conducted using a method call Ripple Effect Mapping. Ripple Effect Mapping is a participatory, qualitative evaluation method that can be used to better understand the intended and unintended results of a program.
Ripple effect mapping is a three step process. First, participants divide into pairs to conduct Appreciative Inquiry interviews about the results they have experienced because of the program. Then, participants then return to the larger group and create a mind map of the identified program results. The map is a tool to depict the continued “ripples” or long-term outcomes of the program. As a collective participants add connecting lines to depict causal, contributing and influencing relationships between outcomes. Finally after the conclusion of the group mapping sessions, follow-up interviews are conducted with volunteers from each session to validate the maps and provide context for analysis.
Key findings and conclusions:
Findings and conclusions will be made on a global level after the evaluation is conducted with alumni in various program locations around the world.
Melissa Velazquez, Unbound senior evaluation specialist;
Becky Spachek, Unbound evaluation specialist