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Getting Feedback from Survivors

This course teaches you about gathering feedback about the services your program provides from the survivors who use them. It is intended to help you engage (or re-engage) your curiosity about the work we do.  

Are the survivors we set out to assist benefiting as much as possible from our services?  Are survivors safer, more confident, and more prosperous as a result of coming in contact with us? How can we find that out?

This course is not an academic lesson in performance or outcome measures – though it does contain some elements of these things. Rather, this course is about practical information you can use in your day-to-day work. 

Completing this course constitutes 3 self-study hours.

Part I: Orientation

This section will get you oriented to some of the global issues related to seeking feedback from survivors. 

  • Read “Was This Helpful? Survivors Tell Us What They Need. Are We Listening?”
  • Based on the article you just read, take a moment to reflect on the following:
    • Currently, how much would you say you use the feedback you gather from survivors to:
      • boost staff morale;
      • refine or change the services your agency provides;
      • refine your skills as an advocate;
      • fundraise or “friend-raise” in your community?
    • As you read the article, did you think about using feedback in a different way than you currently do?  If so, how? 

Part II: Factors that influence how you seek & use feedback

What are all the influences that impact how you seek and use survivor feedback? 

Feedback practices are determined by eight different factors – the specifics of which are unique to your community and program. When we understand these eight universal factors that impact all organizations, we can start to understand why we do things the way we do.  And we can either more fully embrace our practice, or change it. It’s simple once you understand the principles. 

  • Read about the  eight factors that direct how you seek and reflect on survivor feedback.
  • Answer the following reflection questions:
    • Which of the eight factors do you think give you the most support to gather and reflect on survivor feedback? 
    • Which of the eight factors do you think are the least supportive to you in gathering and reflecting on survivor feedback? 
    • Could you imagine any solutions to any problem areas you have identified?  If yes, briefly describe the issue and your idea for the solution. 

Funding sources can also influence how you seek feedback. If your organization receives funding from the Department of Social and Health Services (DSHS), then you have specific requirements related to gathering and reporting survivor feedback. Read this short handout for a pep talk related to the Family Violence Prevention and Services Act outcome surveys and an overview of the requirements. 

Part III: To infinity & beyond…

In this section, you’ll have a chance to look at the future of survivor feedback.  What follows is a brief paper and explanation of questions that we all could adopt for internal reflection and evaluation. 

  • Read “Empowerment Measures” to explore questions that measure empowering practices and outcomes.
  • Answer the following reflection questions:
    • If you could pick only two questions off the long list of questions listed in the paper, and start asking them to survivors tomorrow, which two questions would those be?
    • Are there any questions on the list that you could never see yourself asking?  If so, which one(s), and why wouldn’t you ask those particular questions?
    • Do you ask any of these questions now? If so, which one(s) and what are you discovering from the answers? 

Training Hours Confirmation

After reviewing all of this information and resources on this page, complete this form to receive an email confirmation of your self-study hours per WAC 388-61A-1080.

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