In order to measure any community impact, it is imperative to have clearly defined objectives of your community engagement activities. For more information about defining goals and objectives for your activities, see the Community Engagement Promising Practices section.
Once your goals are defined, it is relatively easy to measure how many events, community meetings, focus groups, etc., (activities) you have hosted during a given year, but it is much more difficult to measure the outcomes or goals of hosting these events, such as change in attitudes of community members. Both of these things are important to measure and there are different tools you may use to measure them.1 See the Tools section for links to qualitative and quantitative tools.
Activities you measure may include:
- Sport events
- Community meetings
- Theatre events/sport tournaments
Goals you measure may include:
- More girls participating in your sport programme
- Increasing local community funding/support
- Change in attitudes toward girls playing sport in the community
- Raised awareness about SRHR issues for girls in the community
Some of the common challenges faced when measuring goals are that you may not get the same community members attending your events, the responses to your interviews or questions may not be fully honest, and baseline and endline surveys can be difficult to carry out in communities because it is difficult to keep track of all the respondents.
 Adams, DW and Hess, M, New Research Instruments for Government: Measuring Community Engagement, Making Knowledge Work: Sustaining Learning Communities and Regions, National Institute of Adult Continuing Education, C. Duke, L. Doyle & B. Wilson (ed), United Kingdom, pp. 67-83. ISBN 1-86201-246-6 (2006)