PropelNext’s theory of change defines the grantees we work with, which strategies we use, and what short- and long-term outcomes we expect to achieve as we help nonprofits gain the skills and mastery to use data for ongoing improvement and learning.
As with any brand-new map, our theory of change requires testing and practice to refine it. Ours, like many others, is a living document that evolves along with our thinking and approach to working with organizations. It was developed through careful research and analysis, but has already been modified as we learn from our evaluation and put theory into practice.
We are working toward four long-term outcomes that constitute our definition of success:
- More youth-serving organizations use data to inform programs and improve results.
- More organizations can and are documenting their effectiveness, will be ready for third-party evaluation, have increased their funding, and adapted their programs to be both more sustainable and prepared to grow.
- PropelNext demonstrates a new approach to building the capacity of groups of youth organizations.
- Throughout the youth-development field, understanding increases of effective and efficient ways to build capacity to use data.
Over the next several years, we will follow the path laid out in our theory of change to evaluate our progress and sharpen our strategies in much the same way as our grantees are doing.