Pollinators Inc Board are very happy to be sharing the final Evaluation Report of our activities and impact.
Pollinators Inc contracted Clear Horizon to conduct an independent evaluation of its activities, events and services. The purpose of the evaluation was to understand:
- The effectiveness, efficiency and appropriateness of current activities,
- Areas for improving the organisation’s reach, relevance and impact,
- Ways of monitoring the organisation’s reach, relevance and impact over time.
The report is already being used to guide Pollinators strategic planning, our operational focus, and is being used by other social entrepreneurs, innovation centres and coworking spaces around Australia to learn lessons from the Geraldton.
Between November 2013 and February 2014 the evaluation involved:
- A desktop review of relevant documents
- A focus group with six active members of Pollinators
- 21 semi-structured interviews with a range of Pollinators stakeholders
- A stakeholder survey with 133 respondents
- A workshop with members to select ‘stories of most significant change’ (image of participants, below)
Five Key Evaluation Questions were considered, revealing the following findings and sixteen recommendations:
- ‘Communication methods of Pollinators Inc. are moderate to highly effective’. An example of a stakeholder comment on our communication was: “They just need to be a bit more active in the media because I know…they’ve got great stories and I think the local paper here is not particularly engaged with the organisation…The message doesn’t spread very far beyond the immediate circle here. I think what they are currently doing is really good, but maybe something to branch across to a more traditional platform for communication.” (Tenant, 7)
- ‘Pollinators’ events and services are mostly high quality with only a small number of stakeholders reporting that they are medium or low quality. A local government stakeholder commented: “I’ve always found [the events and services] to be of a very high quality. I think they deliver that quality at a very good price and utilising the facilities that they have and the people they have to the maximum.”
- ‘Pollinators’ events and services ‘sometimes meet the needs’ of its stakeholders’. The ‘sometimes’ appeared to be about the focus of the organisation and was considered to be a positive attribute by many, recognising that Pollinators was ‘not for everyone’. “They’re very committed to their ideals, and that in itself is fine. I guess it may be a challenge for some people who don’t believe in those ideas, but that’s any organisation, it’s not a criticism of Pollinators. It’s just if you’ve got a strong position and a certain focus, then people have just got to recognise that as your role and your belief” (State government Geraldton, 1)
- ‘After three years in existence and less than six months in the new building (CityHive), Pollinators has achieved all of its expected activities and outcomes to some extent’. While some community outcomes may still be emerging, over 80% of survey respondents agreed that Pollinators had resulted in a range of outcomes. The achievement of these outcomes was supported by qualitative data gained through interviews (See table below)
- ‘Future monitoring and evaluation activities should include continuing to collect output data and stories of change and other ways of finding out about social networks’.
Recommendations were made about continuing, improving or adding new aspects of Pollinators work. The recommendations were in the areas of communication methods, events and services, leadership and creating impact.
The full report is 63 pages and appendices include 10 ‘Stories of Most Significant Change’. It is available for download from the Pollinators website at this link: http://pollinators.org.au/about/strategy/
This report was funded through the Department of Local Government and Communities’ Social Enterprise Fund. The Social Enterprise Fund purpose is to increase the number, effectiveness and efficiency of social enterprises in Western Australia.