Regular evaluation of the participant experience is essential and should continue to inform programming decisions. Evaluation should also be utilized to demonstrate the effectiveness of this type of programming and as a means of seeking funding opportunities. For more information on how to evaluate programs on your campus, including peer support programs, please see our Evaluation Toolkit.

When developing an evaluation questionnaire/survey, you can consider using all or parts of existing tools used to evaluate client perception of care for mental health and addictions, such as the Ontario Perception of Care Tool for Mental Health and Addictions (OPOC-MHA). But keep in mind that evaluations must be tailored to each individual peer support program. Furthermore, it is best practice to go back to your needs assessment to remember the initial program goals and use it to inform evaluation strategies and content.

Below are some examples of potential questions relating to the evaluation of the service adapted from the OPOC-MHA:
  • The services I have received have helped me deal more effectively with my life’s challenges
  • The location of services was convenient for me
  • I was assured my personal information was kept confidential
  • Peer supporters understood and responded to my needs and concerns

For students participating in peer support, program evaluation should not be a requirement to gain access to services. Instead, evaluation of the service should be voluntary.

Knowing when, how, and what to evaluate is very important and, in many cases, answers to these questions can be critical to peer program sustainability. If you would like to learn more about evaluation or be connected to organizations that have expertise in evaluation procedures, contact CICMH.

Guide: PDF Version