Building the Capacity of Facilitators to Implement YPAR in Oregon
In 2014, the Oregon Health Authority (OHA) partnered with ICR to adapt ICR’s Youth Participatory Action Research Curriculum for Empowering Youth evidence-based training curriculum for use in Oregon with a broad range of professionals working with youth, including those with minimal research expertise. YPAR is a recognized approach to engage youth in an authentic way in programs and policies that have impact upon their lives, while providing opportunities for youth to build skills in research, team work, communications and civic engagement, through strong youth-adult partnerships.
OHA selected seven youth-serving organizations across Oregon as grantees to pilot test the new YPAR curriculum adapted for Oregon. Recognizing the need for additional training and resources to build facilitators’ capacity to use the curriculum to conduct YPAR with youth, OHA and ICR partnered to develop a set of training resources to accompany the Oregon curriculum, including:
• An “Introduction to YPAR” webinar
• A two day in-person training workshop to build facilitators’ capacity to implement YPAR
• Technical assistance conference calls on obtaining informed consent and data analysis
• One-on-one consultation
To assess the utility of the training and technical assistance resources for facilitators, the Institute for Community Research conducted a mixed-method (qualitative and quantitative) descriptive evaluation. The information gathered from the evaluation was used to improve the effectiveness of the curriculum and training resources for future YPAR grantees.