Independent Evaluation for the Haitian Education and Leadership Program

Independent Evaluation for the Haitian Education and Leadership Program

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Abstract:

The Citizenship and Leadership (C&L) Program is offered by the Haitian Education and Leadership Program (HELP) whose vision is of “a Haiti where every Haitian has access to quality education, the opportunity to live up to his or her potential, and the ability to contribute to a just and prosperous society.” As such, the C&L Program is part of a set of services complementing full merit and need-based scholarships to deserving high school students entering higher education.

The mission of the institution and goal of the four-year C&L Program is to enable HELP students and alumni to become leaders and engaged citizens who contribute to a more just society in Haiti. The C&L Program follows the Social Change Model of Leadership (SCML), which “explicitly promotes the values of equity, social justice, self-knowledge, personal empowerment, collaboration, citizenship, and service. Service provides a powerful vehicle for developing student leadership capabilities in a collaborative environment. Learning happens by “making meaning” of life experiences. The program offers classes, service-driven experiences, and extra-curricular activities to its students.

Description: 

The evaluation conducted by I4DI found that the C&L Program is particularly relevant to the Haitian context, where there are very few opportunities for youth to participate in civics and leadership training (inside or outside of the classroom), and where leadership is often identified with political controversy. Additionally, the program is relevant in its content because it models key best practices identified through literature review, and offers opportunities for real world application and reflection through service-learning, a strategy that incorporates community service with educational objectives.

The evaluation has found the C&L Program to be very effective. Data collection strongly affirms that program content has lead to a real transformation in students to become active citizens committed to change within themselves, their community, and their country.

The positive engagement of students in their communities was one of the multiplier effects of their participation in the program. This multiplier effect was identified not only through their work with the program partners, but also through independent initiatives that the students subsequently developed following their participation in the C&L Program. This positive impact is also reflected in several employer perspectives that program graduates are candidates imbued with the ‘soft skills,’ such as initiative, critical thinking and work ethics, actively sought by employers in today’s job market.

The evaluation found that the C&L Program could benefit from measures to enhance efficiency. The assessment established that the program lacked a formal program plan detailing resources, processes and outcomes that could have provided a foundation for operational decisions. The efficiency of the program is affected by insufficient staffing levels and staff training opportunities. A pedagogy that creates more dynamic and participative classes could enhance course content and delivery. The evaluation of students’ participation in Service Learning Projects (SLP) is weakened by limited opportunities for supervisory on-site visits by C&L Program staff. In addition, social-entrepreneurship remains an underdeveloped SLP.

The evaluation found that measures to address financial sustainability are in place at the organizational level with KOREM, an alumni contribution mechanism. Sustainability of C&L Program outcomes specifically should be considered with increased direct and mutually beneficial engagement with alumni, and with developed relationships with employers.

Visit the HELP website for full details of HELP program and I4DI’s Independent Evaluation.

Report Information

Year: 2016

Country: Haiti

Region: Latin America and Caribbean

Type: Evaluation Report

Language: English and French

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