Theory of Change

Diverse Voices

The Client

Diverse Voices is a leading provider of education and performing arts education for young people. Their main aim is to train and inspire young people in performing arts to realise creative potential, improve life skills and explore sensitive and important issues.

The Challenge

To develop a Theory of Change for Diverse Voices new Theatre in Education (TIE) project which  focused on online safety and harmful sexual behaviour (HSB) issues for children aged 9-11 across ten schools in the London Boroughs of Waltham Forest and Hackney over two years. The new TIE approach aims to deliver lasting outcomes for pupils and teachers.

The Project

The development of a TOC was the first step in the overall project evaluation of Diverse Voices new TIE project. The TOC provided a basis from which an external evaluation was carried out. The evaluation was based on and explored the theory of change developed by inFocus, that demonstrated the outcomes expected to result from the project.

In the TOC development phase inFocus used their extensive experience of Theory of Change where they have supported 100 TOCs around the world through a participatory approach to adapt and tailor their ‘tried and tested’ TOC methodology to suit the needs of Diverse Voices. This involved:

The process for developing a TOC started with a Literature Review of key internal Diverse Voices documents, as well as TOCs in a similar area of work or developed by similar peer organizations.  The purpose of this activity was to develop content for each area of the TOC that can be taken into the TOC Workshop. 

The inFocus lead evaluator then facilitated a 1 day TOC Workshop in London, using the content generated from the literature review, and fun interactive exercises, to build up a full draft of the TOC.  This included looking at the problem Diverse voices were addressing, characterising their activities, reviewing all of the stakeholders in the project, creating outcomes pathways, and finally developing a list of assumptions.

Finalising and Verifying the TOC:  Following the workshop, inFocus worked with our graphic design team to write-up the first draft of the final TOC outputs, a 1-page diagrammatic TOC that can be used as an effective marketing and communication tool and a longer form narrative document that provided the detailed basis for an M&E framework.   The final draft of the TOC was then verified on an online workshop with Diverse Voices and a final version produced.

From our TOC development process a 1-page diagrammatic TOC and a longer form narrative document were produced. These documents then formed the basis for the next phase of the evaluation which was to develop and M&E framework and data collection tools.