Program Evaluation & Behavior Change

Stamberger Outreach Consulting designs and implements program evaluation strategies to capture social and environmental data and measure program impact. Program coaching is available. 

Meaningful program evaluation is vital to ensuring program success in environmental education and outreach programs.  Measuring changes in perception and behavior and collecting meaningful feedback allows us to more truly track program effectiveness and better serve communities and the environment.  Detailed evaluation is also key to securing project funding and adaptively managing programs to improve them over time to ensure that we’re all doing our best work.  

We understand that behavior change starts at the roots, with an understanding of community values and an assessment of local needs and interests. Stamberger Outreach staff work with community members and leaders to create programs that improve environmental health and provide desired public services.

Our experience with Community Based Social Marketing (CBSM) allows us to work with communities to identify relevant environmental behaviors that work for them and reduce barriers.  Using our experience in survey development, educational assessments, and statistical analysis, we provide before and after metrics showing changes in knowledge and behaviors, testing program effectiveness, and providing feedback to improve programs moving forward.

We use before and after surveys and educational assessments, pledges, follow up surveys, interviews, and individualized technical assistance to identify the most relevant behaviors to communities and clients, collect behavior data, and analyze program effectiveness.

Our evaluation techniques have measured changes in knowledge and behavior and engaged communities through programs like:

  • Stormwater Stars hands-on workshop series, West Multnomah Soil and Water Conservation District
  • Tualatin River Farm Field Trip Program for middle school, Clean Water Services
  • Residential rain garden technical assistance and grants program, City of Gresham
  • Stream restoration partnerships with private property owners, City of Gresham, North Clackamas Urban Watersheds Council
  • Watershed Health Education Program for k-12, Clackamas County Water Environment Services

lawn signs encourage behavior changeThe City of Gresham’s Healthy Streams Program gives a good example of our work with program evaluation and behavior change.

While working for the City of Gresham Watershed Division, Jamie Stamberger of Stamberger Outreach co-managed the Healthy Streams Program (HSP), including program development, implementation, reporting and procuring two grants to fund program implementation.

The program was supported by the City of Gresham and by grants from East Multnomah Soil and Water Conservation District and Metro Nature in Neighborhoods.

The HSP sought to reduce surface water pollution through a menu of services to residents, including free at-home natural gardening consultations, free downspout disconnection parts and labor, free trees, and $200 rain garden grants. Surveys and statistical analysis were used to determine program effectiveness.

Highlights of Program Results:

  • Hosted and/or facilitated 57 workshops and/or community events (1310 estimated total contacts), placed ads in local news publications, advertised through community partners, sent multiple direct mail invitations, and canvassed 1,000 homes to encourage participation in the HSP (562 HSP participants).
  • During natural gardening visits, residents were offered free start up materials and asked to pledge to lawn and garden maintenance behaviors that will help improve water quality.
  • 161 homes received technical assistance visits, and 1247 native plants, 97 compost bins, and 124 backyard habitat structures were provided as incentives to try new sustainable behaviors. Participants also pledged to begin or continue 1029 watershed friendly behaviors on their property.
  • A 2012 survey of visit recipients shows that 49% of participants reduced or eliminated their use since receiving their visit.
  • 433 homes recieved downspout disconnection assessments, 63 homes had downspout disconnection work done
  • 109 free trees were provided
  • 56 rain garden grant pre-qualification visits were conducted
  • 11 $200 residential rain garden grants were issued
  • 44 residents attended rain garden workshops
  • 11 residents participated in a Healthy Lawns Event demonstrating natural non-toxic lawn care
  • Outreach methods employed in the HSP successfully garnered greater than 30% participation in two of three study neighborhoods.