Voluntary environmental projects are the cornerstone of KY EXCEL, and every member project counts toward the success of the program and promoting green behaviors in Kentucky. An essential part of that promotion is demonstrating a quantitative environmental benefit to each project. This can be challenging for many members given the diversity and complexity of the projects. However, making the connection between positive behavioral changes and demonstrated environmental benefits is key to encouraging environmental stewardship.
Our one-page project report form is easy to use for documenting project results. KY EXCEL staff members are committed to ensuring that reporting project results is not burdensome for members, which is why we have created the following five easy steps to ensure successful reporting:
- Keep track of all inputs or resources used for the project. This could include things such as cost of equipment, supplies, food, space, etc. Other important inputs are time and people involved with the project.
- Think about what specific actions are associated with the project as a result of the resources or inputs dedicated to the project. Make a list of those actions or activities. Specific actions may be items such as attending a planning meeting, arranging for the location of the event, sending out invitations, buying equipment, etc.
- Before beginning the project, list what outputs you expect from the project as a result of the activities you have listed. For example, outputs of a cleanup/collection event may be the number of participants at the event. Outputs from a training event may be the number of attendees. Outputs from a tree planting event may be the number of trees planted. For some people, it is easier to think of outputs as the “beans” being counted.
- Once you have your “beans” from the project, the most important step is to convert your “beans” or outputs into meaningful outcomes. Outcomes can be the changes in knowledge, behavior or the environmental benefit that results from the actions you have conducted. For example, outcomes from a collection/cleanup event may be pounds of waste diverted from the environment or landfill. Outcomes from a CFL bulb giveaway or home weatherization may be the anticipated energy savings (kWh) and dollar savings as a result of using the bulbs or weatherizing the home (outputs). Another example of an outcome may be the CO2 savings as a result of the number of trees planted (outputs). Outcomes from an educational event may be anticipated behavioral changes as a result of the workshop (What will the participants do with the information when they leave the workshop?) KY EXCEL staff members are available to assist members in converting their project outputs into meaningful outcomes.
- Finally, ask questions and check with other members to see how similar projects have been reported. Every project goes a long way in encouraging environmental stewardship. Be sure to publicize your successes. Your resources, activities, outputs and outcomes all are important in telling your project’s story and evaluating the success of that project. KY EXCEL has a staff writer available if you would like us to profile your project.
Your annual reports are due in one year after your proposal and membership are approved.
For more information, visit http://www.uwex.edu/ces/pdande/evaluation/evallogicmodel.html.