Measuring our impact

Rebuilding young lives

To ensure our impact links to this overall purpose, we assess the outcomes of the service on each child’s emotional wellbeing, behaviour and relationships, using both Internal and External Evaluation methods.

Internal methods of evaluation

Session records
These are completed for each child after every session following a de-brief. Observations & feedback from children, parents and practitioners are recorded to capture the child’s progress within sessions, at school and home.

Goal-based Outcomes (GBOs)
Initial emotional and behavioural goals are established with families, individual to each child and chosen by the family. Progress towards these is assessed and ‘scored’ out of 10 at the start and end of the programme by families to capture change.

Longitudinal Evaluation
Throughout 2020, we have contacted families leaving the service to see how they are getting on, and to ask them about their experiences at Dandelion Time, the impact the service has on them and how we might be able to do things better. We asked them to complete an anonymous online survey. The intention of the survey is to gain valuable feedback from carers, when they have had time to reflect on the impact of DT’s programme. The anonymity aspect encourages them to be as honest as possible.

Personal Outcomes Questionnaires
Parental Assessment Outcomes: Feedback from parents is used to capture progress on elements of behavioural and social wellbeing measures such as behaviour at home, peer engagement and engagement with school.

Professional Assessment Outcomes: Subjective measurements carried out by practitioners directly working with children and families. Tracking progress on measures of social and emotional wellbeing such as confidence, resilience, and relationships within families.

CORS (Child Outcome Rating Scale)
A mental health measurement questionnaire, completed by children has recently been adopted.  This assesses the impact of the service on emotional wellbeing, resilience and functioning.

All [professionals] made positive comments on the effectiveness and ability of Dandelion Time to get families engaged. There are accounts of family relationships improving, of the behaviour of a child changing dramatically and of more satisfying relationships.  Schools were very positive and used terms like ‘invaluable’, ‘the magic place’, ‘nothing else like it’.  Dandelion Time has made an impact by offering a service at a level breadth and intensity which other agencies cannot offer.

Professor Carl Parsons, Research Centre for Children, Schools and Families, University of Greenwich

External Methods of Evaluation

Internal measures are supported by Independent Evaluation of Dandelion Time every few years.  Research by the Dartington Social Research Unit, University of Greenwich, Ascolta Research and Canterbury Christ Church University has noted the effective and unique nature Dandelion Time’s service, and its success in helping children recover from trauma and thrive.