With one month under my belt and a whole lot of project planning in the bank I looked forward to February coming around. Looking back, I managed to achieve a lot so far (blowing my own trumpet...) and Feburary saw 4 key milestones reached:
- Creating the project’s Theory of Change
- Creating and booking the training
- Starting the application process for the first groups
- The project has a name (hussah!) – Impact in Action
During the latter part of the month I held two information sessions about the project. They were well attended and they generated lots of discussion. It became apparent that the Theory of Change generated some interesting conversation; some of us have seen them, some of us have put one together and others had never encountered one. By the end of the discussion, none of those points mattered as the core concept of the Theory of Change (a model to plan your project/to test/to show the journey your beneficiaries will take) was boiled down to one point: knowing we are providing the right interventions to meet the need we want to eliminate.
Planning lays the solid foundations for the service we want to build. The Theory of Change is an essential part of ensuring your foundations are solid, tested and your service will be built to your planned blueprints. We are the fortunate ones as this building analogy is just that; an analogy. We can be far more flexible than that of a builder or an architect as we can build flexibility into our strategies so that we meet our beneficiaries' needs by seeking their feedback and allowing their experiences to inform changes to our design.
I am a big advocate for the Theory of Change and would urge groups to undertake the process. If this blog has got you wanting to know more then I recommend NPC’s excellent Theory of Change: The Beginning of Making a Difference. For groups that are interested in taking part in the Impact in Action project then you can apply here and access the supporting information here.
February also provided me with an opportunity to dust off my running trainers and do a good deed at the same time, as I took part in GoodGym’s launch night on Monday 27th February. The aim of the night was for a group of runners to run to Bexley Mencap (approximately 1km) to spring clean their driveway and do some planting. GoodGym provides 3 different strands for volunteering opportunities: Missions, Coaching and Group Runs and all are fun, promote fitness and are full of voluntary goodness! GoodGym run every Monday at 18:45 from Crook Log Leisure Centre in Bexley for more information head here: https://www.goodgym.org/about