Date of Award

5-10-2014

Degree Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Public Health (MPH)

Department

Public Health

First Advisor

Dr. Laura Salazar

Second Advisor

Dr. Monique Carry

Abstract

Program Description

As a part of the community education branch of the Feminist Women’s Health Center (FWHC), there is a leadership & advocacy training program for young women called the Young Women’s Leadership Program. This project was developed in 1999 at the FWHC as a way to connect young women from all walks of life to different communities and prepare them for reproductive justice activism, advocacy, and organizational leadership. Through this program, young women will have the opportunity to develop invaluable skills that include: how to advocate for social justice and women’s rights, how to plan events and recruit new activists, and empowerment through volunteering. The Young Women’s Leadership Program has expanded to the Latina community of Atlanta as well as the African American community. Since inception, over 2,200 young women have graduated from the YWLP program (“Young Women’s Leadership Project”, n.d.). The end result of the YWLP is for the participants to take on leadership roles and to participate actively in the community as well as operate as a board member on a committee at the FWHC.

Evaluation Questions

Three main questions were posed in order to perform an outcome evaluation of the Young Women’s Leadership Program. These questions coincided with the agenda of the Program Coordinator because the current goal is to regain external funding for the program. Proof of the success of the program through the outcome evaluation would be helpful in meeting that goal.

  1. Through the activities of the program, did participants feel that their knowledge of reproductive rights and justice was increased? i. Was volunteer orientation valuable in increasing participant’s knowledge of reproductive health, rights, and justice for women?
  2. Did the participants find the advocacy activities of the program valuable in increasing their advocacy skills?
  3. Did the participants find the leadership activities of the program valuable in developing their leadership skills? i. Did any of the program participant’s progress to Tier III leadership roles within the Feminist Women’s Health Center? If so, in what capacity?

Summary of Results

To summarize the findings of the evaluation results, a majority of the program participants did have the perception that five of the Young Women’s Leadership Program activities did increase their knowledge of reproductive health, rights, and justice. Specifically, volunteer orientation and FOCUS: Reproductive Justice Advocacy workshop seemed to have the largest response rates and were favorable towards participants agreeing that their knowledge had increased as a result of the activity. Also, a majority of the participants did agree that 5 out of 6 activities were valuable in increasing their advocacy skills as well as their leadership skills.

The evaluation question, “Did any of the program participant’s progress to Tier III leadership roles within the Feminist Women’s Health Center?” returned positive results as there were some 7 participants who moved to Tier III leadership out of 24 participants who responded.

In summary, the participants of the Young Women’s Leadership Program, did have a positive perception of the program on increasing the leadership and advocacy skills as well as the knowledge of reproductive health, rights, and justice of the participants surveyed.

Share

COinS