One of the unique and practical aspects of Moving to the Future is that it incorporates evaluation into previous program-planning steps. As a result, much of the information in this chapter relies on your having done the work in previous chapters.
If you are using Moving to the Future to evaluate the effectiveness of your programs and you have not completed the evaluation-related tasks in previous chapters, then you need to complete that work now. Follow the steps below so you are ready to evaluate the effectiveness of your nutrition and physical activity program plan.
- Complete the worksheets in the file entitled Writing Objectives Worksheets in chapter 2. If you did not use Moving to the Future to write your objectives but have well-written outcome and process objectives, then just complete the appropriate evaluation worksheets on pages 6-9 and page 11 of the file entitled Writing Objectives Worksheets in chapter 2.
- Complete the Evaluation Work Plan in chapter 3. Blank copies of the Evaluation Work Plan template are on pages 9-11 of the file entitled Nutrition and Physical Activity Plan Template in chapter 3. The accompanying instructions for the Evaluation Work Plan template are on pages 11 and 12 of the file entitled Nutrition and Physical Activity Plan Template Instructions also in chapter 3.
- Review your evaluation work plan to make sure there are action steps for each process objective that will generate all the program-specific data that you anticipate needing to successfully manage an intervention and to make decisions on how to improve an intervention. For example, if one of your process objectives has to do with starting some neighborhood-based walking clubs, then make sure there are action steps in the evaluation work plan that will generate program-specific data such as the number of people who join each club, the number of people who regularly participate in club walks, basic demographics of people in the club, and the level of satisfaction people have with the club. The Program-Specific Evaluation Measures Tip Sheet includes more ideas on program data that you might want to collect.
- Make sure the evaluation work plan includes action steps for compiling and distributing evaluation data. The "Intended Use of Evaluation Data" section of your nutrition and physical activity plan should be helpful to you in thinking through how you will distribute your evaluation data.
Copyright 2006 Association of State and Territorial Public Health Nutrition Directors
Moving to the FutureTerminology
Coalitions. People work together in a number of ways, in coalitions, partnerships, committees, teams, task forces, and so on. The tools in Moving to the Future will help you no matter how your group is structured. To make Moving to the Future friendly to people working together in different ways, we use these group terms interchangeably. So, if you are working in a formal committee and Moving to the Future uses the word team, the information applies to you as well.
Program. In Moving to the Future, the word program is defined broadly and could encompass any group of activities including projects, services, programs, and policy or environmental changes.
Nutrition and Physical Activity. In Moving to the Future, we often pair the word nutrition with the phrase physical activity, as for example in "address the nutrition and physical activity needs" or "develop a nutrition and physical activity plan." This does not suggest that these materials are only useful to people working on community-based nutrition AND physical activity programs. You can use the Moving to the Future resources to develop a plan focused only on nutrition or a plan focused only on physical activity. Moving to the Future provides guidance on a process--not on content. In fact, these materials could be adapted and used to develop a teen pregnancy prevention plan, for example, or a plan for any other community health priority.
Moving to the Future principles Flexible and Realistic are the bywords of this approach. The intent of Moving to the Future is to provide guidance. Use what is helpful and modify materials to meet your needs. Planning and implementing community-based programs is not work that can be done perfectly. Do the best you can, given your real-world limitations, and commit to making improvements every year.
Copyright 2006 Association of State and Territorial Public Health Nutrition Directors.