Luna Child and Youth Advocacy Centre Strives for Meaningful Change

PolicyWise worked with the Luna Child and Youth Advocacy Centre to revise their theory of change. We also helped them develop an evaluation framework so they can understand their impact. Luna aims to support and enhance the well-being of children and youth who’ve experienced sexual abuse, severe physical abuse, or maltreatment. 

Child and Youth Advocacy Centres are dedicated to pursuing justice while minimizing trauma and facilitating healing for children and their caregivers. Their approach is team based, child-centric, and collaborative

Many Canadian provinces follow the Child and Youth Advocacy Centre model, including Alberta.

The Luna Child and Youth Advocacy Centre is one of eight in Alberta. PolicyWise collaborated with Luna to develop their theory of change to help them achieve their vision. Luna’s vision is a world where all children and youth are safe, healthy, and thriving . Luna’s theory of change is built on five principles:

  • Strengths-based
  • Trauma-informed
  • Cross-sector and cross-agency collaboration
  • Multi-level support
  • Continuous learning

Social service providers, non-profits, and other Child and Youth Advocacy Centres can learn from and adapt Luna’s theory of change. It can also help organizations to identify areas of service overlap and potential collaboration.

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Increasingly, Child and Youth Advocacy Centres across Canada are including prevention as part of their focus. Luna is among them. Yet, existing evaluation tools mostly focus on court outcomes and service satisfaction. 

To address this gap, PolicyWise also created an evaluation framework. It includes measures for healing and well-being outcomes to help Luna understand their impact, strengths, and opportunities for improvement.

Like the theory of change, the evaluation tool can be used by other organizations across the social serving sector. They can adapt or extend it to serve their own goals, circumstances, and content.

The theory of change and evaluation framework are intended to be adapted for use by other organizations. The hope is that they’ll contribute to ongoing learning and innovation in service of a world where all children and youth are safe and can thrive.