Knowledge Mobilization and Advocacy Framework
Our commitment to evidence-informed knowledge mobilization and advocacy is practiced at all levels of our organization from the Board and senior leadership to front line staff. Using a collaborative and community-grounded framework, we synthesize, share and mobilize evidence to advance positive change at three levels:
We collaborate and involve under-represented community groups as partners and “Community Action Leaders” in our knowledge mobilization and advocacy activities. Peer Researchers and Community Action Leaders take a leadership role including organizing policy forums, producing public education films, making deputations, organizing delegation visits to local elected leaders’ offices, writing public education blog posts and Op-Eds, and helping to organize rallies or petition drives.
Access Alliance believes that to protect and deepen democracy, civil society organizations need to serve as an intrinsic part of a system of checks and balances to ensure elected governments and their policies are accountable to the public, particularly to vulnerable and under-represented groups. Direct policy and system advocacy work is an essential part of what Access Alliance does. The Community-based Research team works closely with Access Alliance’s Social Action Committee (led by our Board of Directors) to plan and mobilize a number of important policy campaigns and advocacy activities.
Advocacy activities we lead or support are in direct response to the needs of the client communities we serve or are informed by our research. We do advocacy work not by fueling antagonism and polarization, but through building bridges and broad coalitions, strengthening community/civic engagement, overcoming knowledge gaps and misinformation through evidence and facts, and through constructive dialogue and engagement with policy/decision makers.
Program Planning and Evaluation
Program planning, monitoring and evaluation activities are carried out on an ongoing basis across Access Alliance. These activities help us to ensure accountability. They also help us use resources effectively, promote quality improvement through evidence-informed decision making, and improve learning for positive change. Accountability is multi-directional (both vertical and lateral) to all of our stakeholders (e.g. staff, management, Executive Director, Board of Directors, funders, clients and community partners). To this end, Access Alliance is fully committed to engaging our clients and community members in shaping the programs and services that we offer through various processes related to planning and evaluation. In doing so, we recognize the importance of the whole context/person, including an individual’s family, friends and community, as well as the social, cultural and spiritual aspects of their lives.
Access Alliance has designed an integrated program planning and evaluation model as an ongoing process whereby programs and services are planned and reviewed simultaneously, with the necessary decisions and changes made. The figure below presents the integrated model, demonstrating how the two processes go hand-in-hand.