Our ultimate impact goal is to create a better world for children and youth, though we do not directly work with these groups. Our method is to find the social ventures that are best suited to do the job and capacity build them to develop faster, better and with lower risk. Since our direct contribution is for the social ventures we support, measuring our impact on them is essential. If we were to only measure our social ventures’ impact on children and youth, a significant portion of our impact results chain would be a “black hole” and we would not gain the information needed for learning and for improving our support. In 2018, we monitored:
Incubator support received by our social ventures. In 2018 we measured outputs by surveying our social entrepreneurs at the end of the year about what incubator support they received from us.
For example, we asked about within which areas that they received capacity-building support, and how many useful connections that were made for them. 80% responded and participation was anonymous. In 2019 our program managers will monitor output results per named social entrepreneur, so that we can perform a more granular analysis of which outputs that most effectively drive achievement of our targeted outcomes.
Strengthening our social ventures’ organizational capabilities. By organizational capabilities we mean the structures, strategies, processes, culture and know-how that our social ventures need in order to develop effective solutions and become ready to scale. We monitor organizational capabilities within five areas: A Effective solution, B Financial sustainability, C Leadership and team, D Impact scaling and E Systems change. To understand our social ventures’ development in 2018, we compared their organizational capabilities in January and December.
We measure a social venture’s organizational capabilities by counting the number of milestones reached. A milestone is either a completed activity (e.g. Theory of Change mapped) or a result accomplished (e.g. Positive outcome results achieved). Milestones are predefined by Reach for Change and are the same for all social ventures participating in the incubator.
The targeted milestones vary with the incubator year. During the first incubator year, for example, the target is for our social ventures to reach milestones A1-A7, B1-B9, C1-C7, D1 and E1-E3. Milestone achievement is assessed through dialogue between our in-country program managers and our social entrepreneurs. For several of the milestones, our global impact team validates the assessment by reviewing empirical evidence.
To gain an improved understanding of our impact, we surveyed our social entrepreneurs at the end of 2018 on how much less they believe they would have developed during the year without support from Reach for Change.
Survival and scaling of our alumni. By strengthening the organizational capabilities of our social ventures while they are in the incubator, we prepare them to scale their impact to a significant share of their target group after they have graduated. The share of our alumni that succeeds with scaling their impact to a significant share of their target group is the ultimate indication of to what extent our method works and is critical to monitor. We don’t survey our alumni every year so in this report we share our 2017 results.
Because our ultimate impact goal is to create a better world for children and youth, it is key for us to learn the extent to which our social ventures reach this goal. In 2018, we asked our social ventures to monitor and report:
Number of children and youth supported. A child is defined as under 18 and youth as 18 to 24 years old. “Supported” means that the child or youth has received support towards the outcome(s) targeted by the social venture, e.g. improved literacy. In 2018, the number of children and youth supported was submitted by our social ventures as part of their triannual reporting. They also submitted documentation that verified the number reported, which was audited by our global impact team. We have clustered the total number of children and youth supported by our social ventures in 2018 based on: age, support channel, targeted short-term outcome and Sustainable Development Goal.
How the lives of children and youth were improved, changed and protected. In addition to monitoring the number of children and youth supported, we want to find out how the support resulted in change — the outcomes.
Our social ventures all work to create a better world for children and youth, but the outcomes they target differ. In this report, we can find examples ranging from strengthened integration, to improved attitude towards coding, to improved literacy. We encourage our social ventures to try to capture not only outcomes (what changed for the children and youth supported) but also impact (how much of the change would not have happened without the support of the social venture).
For social ventures participating in their first incubator year, our focus is on helping the social entrepreneur and their team to qualitatively explore outcomes. We build their capacity to interview children and youth about how they were impacted by the social venture’s support, and we guide them on how to capture what they learned in impact stories. In 2018, our social ventures submitted impact stories as part of their triennial reporting. Our global impact team audited all impact stories and shared feedback for the social entrepreneur and their program manager to reflect on together.
For social ventures participating in their second and third incubator year, our focus is on helping the social entrepreneur and their team to quantitatively measure outcomes. The outcome “Improved literacy,” for example, could be measured through the indicator “number of words that a child can read correctly during one minute”. In 2018, our social ventures reported quantitative outcome results annually. Results were audited by our global impact team.
I agree Our site saves small pieces of text information (cookies) on your device in order to deliver better content and for statistical purposes. You can disable the usage of cookies by changing the settings of your browser. By browsing our website without changing the browser settings you grant us permission to store that information on your device.