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Develop Sustainable Programs

A sustainable program is one that you can maintain long term, to help achieve your agency’s mission.  

Continually monitor each program independently. Consider the following questions:

Meeting the need

  • What are the key objectives?
  • What are our indicators of success? 
  • What individual gains will participants make?
  • What data will we collect to monitor progress and impact?]
  • How will we process and report this data?


  • What are our exact program costs?
  • Will any costs increase (or decrease) over time?
  • What in-kind support do we receive?
  • What if that in-kind support is discontinued? 
  • Can we make specific changes to operate more efficiently?


  • How do we currently cover costs?
  • What funding changes do we anticipate (grant cycles ending, etc.)?  
  • What if we face unanticipated changes in funding?
  • Are there funding sources we should approach for new support?


  • What positions (staff and volunteer) are responsible for this program?
  • Do we have planned staff or volunteer transitions?
  • What is our succession plan for unplanned transitions?
  • Can we make specific changes to operate more efficiently or effectively?


  • Has attendance been steady, increased or decreased? 
  • If steady, will current participants continue or must we recruit new participants?
  • If decreased or increased, why?
  • Do we anticipate any trends in participation that will affect programming?


  • Do community members know about this program? 
  • Does the community support it?
  • What community partnerships can we initiate or grow?
  • Do we need to limit or end any current partnerships?


  • Are we meeting our key objectives?
  • Are we reporting measurable gains? 
  • Is there data we need to start tracking?
  • Based on participant and community feedback, what improvements can we make?
  • How often do we evaluate this program?


Action Plan Template from County Health Ranking

Adult Literacy Program Logic Model

Program Analysis - The MacMillan Matrix