The Leapfrog team were invited to facilitate a Creative Evaluation Workshop on “Overcoming the universal evaluation challenge of evidencing impact” at the Join the Dots 2016 conference in Elgin in March. The conference was an annual networking conference organised by tsiMoray. The conference aimed to bring together Third Sector and Public Sector Organisations in the spirit of learning, collaboration and celebration.

Whether they are third sector, public sector or private sector organization working with the communities, they need to gather evidence to make improvements in the services they deliver, projects they run and to inform decision making. Evidencing impact also plays a significant role with the funders and commissioners. Collecting evidence rather than information helps us focus on the purpose.

The afternoon session looked at three key aspects of Evaluation:

- Evaluaiton Challenges the organisations face in evidencing the difference they make to individuals and communities.

- The past tools and approaches the participants have used for community engagement within their organisations

- Future opportunities and the participants’ evaluation goals

Bringing together participants from diverse organisations stimulated a mixture of perspectives on evaluation and the various ways the organisations seek to evidence impact. During their conversations, they discussed examples of successful evaluation tools and approaches (as well as acknowledging their limitations) and how to ensure that the information that is captured is meaningful. Introducing a selection of evaluation tools created through Leapfrog, we aimed to inspire the participants to consider how they might adapt these in the future. One participant explained she was “intrigued that games can be used as tools to do evaluation”. Another one commented that the “session was interesting, valuable” and added that she recognised how diverse organisations face the same challenges. 

The workshop initiated good discussion around exchanging experiences and insights. There was an opportunity to create and adapt new approaches to evaluation using Leapfrog’s fun and creative Evaluation tools.