Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Logic Models Can be Easy

I am asked repeatedly by grant professionals and program staff if there is an easy way to create logic models. I wonder why these extremely helpful tools make even the most seasoned nonprofit professional uneasy? Here's a simple way to get started on even the most difficult of logic models:

Let’s start with an example: I have a headache and want to find relief. My logic model would look something like this:

1. I have a headache (I acknowledge the problem)
2. I want it to go away (I know what I need to solve the problem)
3. I look for a pain reliever (I try to find ways - solutions - to remedy the problem)
4. I take the pain reliever (I implement those solutions)
5. I feel better (problem solved)

Now try to use the same - er - logic - for a logic model. For instance:
1. 75% of children in my local school district are not reading at grade level (I acknowledge the problem)
2. I want to help these children improve their reading skills (I know what I need to solve the problem)
3. I look for proven ways to help children improve their reading scores (I try to find a remedy to the problem)
4. I implement an after-school tutoring program in my local school (I implement a solution)
5. More than half the students enrolled are reading on level within 18 months (problem solved)

Granted that not every problem or concern is this simple and can be addressed in so few steps. Most take a much more detailed plan of attack. That’s why using a logic model can be so helpful. It helps the grant professional lay out each logical step from the beginning of the project until the end, and it help he or she see what to include in the proposal.

Finally, get some inspiration on the following websites:

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