By the Numbers
In 3 years we’ve enrolled 814 families with 1500+ children across 86 Regional Zip Codes
Provided materials, support and programming for more than 25 schools and 22 libraries throughout the region.
We Stories has 2 full time and 2 part time staff members and more than 140 volunteers, dedicated to increasing our capacity and improving our program offerings
Over 650 committed individuals have been moved by our mission to invest financially in our growth.
Participant feedback is used to refine program design, identify unmet needs, or guide community partnerships and referrals. Other evaluations and case studies are designed to inform recruitment, retention and community building efforts moving forward. Findings will also help inform the organization’s understanding of critical mass and how its theory of change is operating in practice.
FAMILY LEARNING PROGRAM
We invest in evaluating our program and regularly gathering data from our program participants. Parents are surveyed at the end of each Family Learning Program using a retrospective pre/post-test design. Participants report on their attitudes and behaviors before and after the program, including confidence, competence, and comfort with discussing race. Behavioral questions assess the regularity with which parents discuss racial issues and take action. This tool has helped us see important findings like those shared here.
After just 12 weeks of enrollment in our Family Learning Program, we typically see that:
90% of parents are comfortable talking about racism with their children after We Stories as compared to 20% at program start.
85% will report having conversations with their children about racial difference and racism with more regularity.
And in our most recent cohort, we found that:
100% of respondents agree or strongly agree that they are now connected to other parents who care about racism as compared to 56% beforehand.
25% of respondents report taking action as an advocate MORE than they had before the start of the program.
Number of participants who were “confident in their ability to address racism” doubled over the course of the 12-week program.
THE ONGOING WE STORIES COMMUNITY
On an ongoing basis, We Stories seeks to understand what makes their participants go from being connected and motivated as individuals to being involved in racial equity efforts in schools and communities. We Stories wants to support that progression for its participants and closely works with volunteer committees to develop best practices.
Specifically, a recent outside evaluation showed that our alumni experience significant changes, such as:
Growing awareness of racial inequities in systems
Strengthening relationships or relationship conflict
Sense of community/connectedness with other We Stories members
Increasing confidence to act to address racial inequity
Increased participation in individual and collective racial justice advocacy actions
WE STORIES IMPACT ON CHILD DEVELOPMENT
In addition, We Stories Family Learning Program has attracted interest from local and national experts in childhood development, breaking new ground in ways that contribute to research in this field. The Cognition & Development Lab at Washington University is currently enrolling a collaborative research study led by Lori Markson, Associate Professor of Psychological & Brain Sciences at Washington University and a We Stories participant.
The study compares We Stories families to a control group and observes how children’s racial socialization affects their choices and thinking in different situations. It will look at the choices children make as they interact with the world around them, how they reason about other people, and how they form friendships and build social relationships. Recruitment for this study is underway for families with children from 1- to 8-years of age.