Evaluation and Impact

Great Stories Club

To assess the impact of the TRHT Great Stories Club program model and to inform evolving project activities and strategies during the grant term, ALA worked with external evaluators with support from the W.K. Kellogg Foundation.

BECOME worked with the ALA project team and 25 pilot libraries to produce an Interim Evaluation Report, which included a Theory of Change that guided project activity over the next year.

PIE Org worked with the ALA project team and TRHT GSC libraries on final program assessment and evaluation. Their evaluation notes the following project results/findings, which are explored in greater detail in the Final Evaluation Report (July 2020, PDF).

  • The GSC program effectively helped youth participants reflect on and better understand complex issues presented by the selected books and supporting materials (e.g., issues of racial injustice and social inequity explored in the Brave series).
  • Youth participants were able to shift their perspectives and identify with characters and situations in the texts.
  • Youth participation in the program increased interest in reading.
  • Library staff experienced a parallel process of better understanding the same complex issues after participating in the program (e.g., they reflected on issues of bias, racial inequity, and social justice and increased their understanding of these issues while implementing the Brave series).
  • Strong, sustainable partnerships were formed between libraries and community partner organizations because of the program.
  • Racial healing circles were powerful experiences and supported youth participant reflection and dialogue on key issues of racial and social justice.
  • The program was implemented with fidelity. Participating libraries implemented the required number of books, with the appropriate audiences.
  • Library project directors were prepared to lead the GSC discussions and reported confident execution of the program due to the ALA orientation, supporting materials, and strong community partnerships.
  • Relevant personal experiences, historical examples that related to the books, and ALA-provided discussion questions were key activities and strategies that supported positive program impacts.
  • No single activity or strategy worked in isolation—it was a combination of multiple types, aligned to the contextual needs of each library’s group, that spurred positive program impact.

ALA project staff and the evaluation team at PIE will present results of the TRHT GSC evaluation in a webinar for participating libraries and other project stakeholders in November 2020. An archive of this presentation will be made available following the event.