In 2014, Entwine received a generous grant from the Jim Joseph Foundation to support the continued expansion of select programs, to track and provide evaluation of Jewish identity
and service learning outcomes produced by its programs, and ultimately to develop Entwine’s internal capacity for ongoing self-assessment and learning. What did Entwine know about its
participants? What are the backgrounds of the participants, and why did they come to Entwine, and what had changed for them since becoming involved? Could the organization intentionally
re-design a program to achieve a stronger outcome? And if Entwine’s model did have value, were there real learnings that it could contribute to the broader field?
Since its founding in 2008—while pursuing its mission to catalyze young Jewish adults to view global Jewish awareness, connection, and responsibility as core to their identity—Entwine was so focused on existing and growing, that it could not answer these questions with absolute certainty.
Rosov Consulting worked closely with Entwine to carry out the evaluation part of the Jim Joseph Foundation grant, and to increase Entwine’s internal capacity for evaluation work going forward. The evaluation project included three separate, but closely related, components: 1) A study of alumni from Entwine’s Insider trips and Multi-Week Fellowships from 2008-January 2015; 2) Analysis of participants before, during, and after participation on Insider Trips and Multi-Week Fellowships between June 2015 and February 2016; and 3) An assessment of Entwine Learning Networks across the country, encompassing leaders, trip-and fellowship alumni, and non-participants in various communities.
Initially, Entwine wanted only to focus on its Learning Networks and participants currently on its trips and fellowships. However, Rosov Consulting felt strongly that examining data from past programs, and determining alumni outcomes of those programs, would offer Entwine a 360 degree view that could greatly inform its decision-making moving forward.
Following the evaluation, Entwine reflected on key learnings, including:
- The young people who Entwine and others in the field of Jewish education and engagement often categorize as “unaffiliated” and “unengaged” actually want intense Jewish experiences and relationships.
- Jewish service experiences, whether offered by Entwine or others in this space, can create and catalyze Jewish values.
- Young people need space to grow and it is important to design an engagement continuum with pathways to deepen involvement over time.
Through its work with Rosov Consulting, Entwine also understood the need to improve its database
to allow for better tracking and surveying—especially of alumni.