Capacity Building

Capacity Building


CIRS provides technical assistance for organizations and communities interested in improving their internal capacity to build successful collaborations, conduct research and evaluation and prepare funding proposals. We can provide training in a range of techniques, including survey design and administration, outcomes, focus groups and key informant interviews, logic modeling, data entry, and analysis. Our goal is to demystify the process for you, making what are often daunting and intimidating concepts and processes easy and accessible.


CIRS trained immigrants in research design and survey methods, enabling them to successfully administer the “Immigrant Voice Survey” in three Central Valley communities.


CIRS is creating a community-based assessment tool for Central Valley farmworkers so that they can assess their risk for heat stress.




Program, policy, and funding decisions require access to accurate information to identify priorities and allocate resources in the most optimal manner. CIRS conducts research for planning, needs assessments and other forms of primary and secondary data analysis that help organizations identify priorities, with respect to services, geographic coverage and target populations. Our research supports a broad range of organizations, including public sector agencies that need to develop or refine health programs; funders interested in developing funding guidelines or initiatives based on priority community needs and interests; and non-profits requiring additional data on their target populations for grant proposals or programming purposes.


Past Clients:

  • The California Endowment: Conducted The California Agricultural Workers Health Survey, the largest farmworker health survey in California history.
  • James Irvine Foundation, Central Valley Partnership (CVP): Technical assistance for CVP and Civic Action Network members working to increase immigrant civic participation in the Central Valley.
  • Napa County: An assessment of the demand for farmworker housing in Napa County, including recommendations for improvements.
  • California Health Care Foundation and Mendocino County Children’s Health Initiative: CIRS conducted research on enrollment and retention patterns among Healthy Families beneficiaries, to better understand reasons behind low retention rates.
  • USDA Agricultural Marketing Service: Breaking down market barriers for small and mid-sized organic growers identified marketing challenges limiting the viability of small and mid-sized farms.
  • Fresno Healthy Dairy Commission: Impacts of the dairy sector on air quality in Fresno County and mechanisms to reduce emissions.
  • Mendocino County: Assessment for the demand of farmworker housing and transportation in Mendocino County with recommendations for addressing needs.





CIRS offers targeted research and consulting services for a broad range of clients, including foundations, non-profits, public sector agencies, health care providers and educational institutions.

Our objective is to provide timely and accurate information that will improve the effectiveness of organizations working to promote positive social change.

We offer a range of services, including:

  • Program evaluations
  • Support for policy/advocacy efforts
  • Targeted research to advance organizational agendas,complete planning studies and needs assessments
  • Technical assistance to build research and evaluation capacity

We utilize a range of research methods, including surveys (mail, in-person, telephone and web-based), focus groups, key informant interviews, community forums, case studies and secondary data analysis.

For more information about our services, please contact:

Gail Wadsworth
530-756-6555, ext. 17

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Program evaluation has become an integral part of social interventions. CIRS helps nonprofits demonstrate the effectiveness of specific programs, while providing funders with a deeper understanding of the policy and programmatic impacts of broad-based initiatives.

  • We employ a broad range of quantitative and qualitative methods, including surveys, secondary data analysis, geo- and asset-mapping, focus group discussions, key informant interviews, community forums and participant observation.
  • Our evaluations are useful. We provide information that will allow our clients to better understand their interventions and offer recommendations for moving ahead in ways that will make their future efforts even more effective.

Past Clients:

  • Labor Occupational Health Program, UC Berkeley: Evaluation of Teens Working in Agriculture, an ESL curriculum teaching teen farmworkers about health and safety.
  • California Rural Legal Assistance Foundation: Evaluation of the CRLAF Citizenship Project.
  • Agriculture and Land Based Training Association (ALBA):Evaluation of the ALBA Small Farmer Education Program (ProgramaEducativoparaPequeñosAgricultores-PEPA)
  • The California Endowment: Collaborative evaluation with Harder+Company Community Research, of The California Endowment's Promotores Communitarios de Salud Strategy, a grassroots education and mobilization strategy for improving community health.
  • Central Valley Air Quality Coalition's (CVAQ): Evaluation of the Cental Valley Air Quality Coalition's (CVAQ) efforts to improve air quality in the San Joaquin Valley.
  • Community Alliance with Family Farmers (CAFF): Evaluation of the outreach components of the Environmentally Responsible Management Practices for Tree Crops in the Feather River Basin project.



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