For Youth by Youth: Engaging Adolescents as Evaluators of the Growing Up GREAT! Project
Everyone agrees that adolescent participation in designing, implementing, and evaluating their programs is good practice, yet the reality is uneven. In evaluation, projects reaching children and adolescents still tend to limit the role of young people to respondents. But what about engaging them as team members of the evaluation itself? Save the Children and the Institute for Reproductive Health welcomed and trained a group of younger adolescents as evaluators to assess their program, Growing Up GREAT!, and its effects on peers, parents, teachers, and service providers reached by the project. Youth and adult evaluators mentored the process. The success of the first evaluation in 2018 led to the second evaluation in 2021. The evaluation journey is shared in this brief. It includes lessons about the process and reflections by younger and older evaluators on what it means to engage younger adolescents meaningfully in an evaluation.