Sample Report for Program Funders
The Chelan County Summer Sewing Camp is a program for school-age youths who have completed grades 2–4. This program is designed to help youths learn sewing skills as well as develop life skills including decision making, wise use of resources, and self-responsibility. This program, sponsored by WSU Extension
4-H Youth Development and the Sew Easy Sewing Store, is held at the local library every morning for a week during the summer. Each youth attends an average of 12 hours of programming.
The planning committee identified four program objectives to help youths:
1) learn sewing skills,
2) practice decision making skills,
3) enhance skills in self-responsibility, and
4) learn about wise use of resources.
These objectives were selected by an advisory group consisting of WSU Extension educators, parents, community business owners, and
Twenty-four youths, ages 9–11, attended the program this year (18 girls and 6 boys). All youths came from the surrounding area of the small, north-central Washington community of Brewster. Thirteen of the youth identified themselves as white, and eleven of the youth identified themselves as Hispanic or multiracial.
The WSU Extension Life Skills Evaluation System was used to assess life skills learned in the program. The Life Skills Evaluation Outcomes and Indicators have been tested and are valid and reliable for youth and adult programming. The evaluation process uses both a pretest and a posttest self-report which were administered during the first and last meetings of the Summer Sewing Camp. Of the 24 youths registered for the program, 21 were in attendance at both meetings and completed both evaluation forms for a response rate of 88%.
Of the participants, 75% made gains from pretest to posttest. As measured by this self-report, the youths made gains in knowledge and behavior for life skills in the areas of decision making, self-responsibility, and wise use of resources. The greatest gain in life skills was in the youths’ ability to take care of their belongings while at camp. All gains measured by the evaluation instrument are illustrated in the attached graph. From this information we can see that the Summer Sewing Camp really is helping youths learn the targeted life skills.
The evaluation also measured changes in sewing skills. Results indicated that youths did make gains in their knowledge of sewing machines, how to read a pattern, and how to construct a garment. The greatest gains were made in learning how to use the sewing machine.
Finally, we asked the youths open-ended questions about what they liked and disliked about the program. Of the 21 respondents, 20 reported that the program was helpful and that they learned more about sewing. One youth said, “This was great! I never knew that sewing could be so much fun.” Another youth wrote, “Knowing how to use a sewing machine helps me at home. Now my mom asks me to help her fix our clothes!”
One person was not pleased with the program and others had suggestions for improvement. One youth wrote, “I didn't learn anything. The teacher was really boring.” Other youths reported that sometimes they didn't have enough time on the sewing machine to finish what they started. This tells us that next time we need to either find more sewing machines so that each participant has access to one, or we need to limit the number of participants in each session.