We are conducting a multi-year evaluation of the Parent Leadership Training Institute (PLTI), an initiative based on a civic empowerment training approach that rests on core democratic values. The program enables parents to become advocates for children and focuses on parents as partners with agencies and leaders, ultimately enhancing the civic climate of community life. The training integrates child development, leadership, and democracy skills into a parent curriculum, and encourages parents to focu son their interests in a supportive context. The twenty-week course and civic practice offer detailed information on how change occurs in states and neighborhoods to improve family outcomes, especially the well-being of children.
Our evaluation has three goals:
- to examine the following research question through a combination of longitudinal survey research and the personal narratives of PLTI participants and alumni: “What is the short- and long-term impact of PLTI on parents, public officials, collective action, and civic climate? For whom and under what conditions is PLTI most impactful?”;
- to build the capacity of PLTI sites to use data for program improvement; and
- to pilot a participatory storytelling approach that PLTI sites nationwide will be able to adopt and use on their own to illustrate the impact of PLTI on families and communities.