Perigee Fund Paid Family and Medical Leave Outreach Grants Evaluation

Pierce and Yakima Counties / 2022

Project completed while at BERK Consulting


From 2020 to 2022, Vivien was the evaluation and learning partner for the Perigee Fund’s partnership with the Washington State Employment Security Department to support community-based organizations in facilitating equitable access to the state Paid Family and Medical Leave program. Vivien designed and implemented a nimble and relevant evaluation process for the networked grant structure that involved nearly 40 partners. The evaluation facilitated learning and process improvements among community-based organizations and external parties, as well as for the grant funders.


Historically, evaluation has been a tool used by funders to demand accountability and from funded partners. In this way, community organizations are often doubly burdened to do mission-driven work and to document and prove their impact. This partnership with Perigee Fund, in contrast, was an exciting opportunity to do evaluation more equitably and in partnership with community partners. We were able to take time to listen to the community, observe implementation, and learn what success means to them. The evaluation and funder learning goals developed formatively with the implementation of the grant, and we used innovative and interdisciplinary approaches to collect data that was useful to the funder and to partners with a minimal burden.

Learning from this project has gone on to influence national conversations and other states as they develop and improve state-level paid family leave programs. Within Washington State, the Paid Family and Medical Leave implementing agency, ESD, is also adopting community-driven outreach methods based on the Perigee Fund experience.
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