Footsteps 100 - Impact and change

It is my great pleasure and privilege to welcome you to the 100th edition of Footsteps. What a milestone!  

I first started working as Footsteps Editor in March 2015. During my initial training, one moment had a particular impact on me. My colleague Alice Keen (Footsteps Editor from 2011 to 2015) showed me the results of the survey she had carried out with Footsteps readers (see page 4). As I read about how Footsteps had helped bring change to readers’ communities, I was deeply moved.  

Tchamouza in Togo wrote of how, thanks to Footsteps, his community were now growing and benefiting from five hundred moringa trees. Obed in Zambia related how people in his community had dug pit latrines and were now enjoying better health. Enoch in Nigeria shared the amazing news that a community had dropped their plans to avenge a cattle raid after reading Footsteps 92 on conflict and peace. Rufus in Pakistan told us how, inspired by Footsteps, a local group started training people to make fuel-efficient stoves. Reading through such stories, I saw the impact that Footsteps was having – and I was so excited to become a part of it. 

We all feel encouraged to know our work is creating positive change. This issue looks at how this happens, and how we can measure it. 

As well as celebrating the work of Footsteps, we try to answer questions about change such as: Where are we starting from (page 7)? How can we get genuine feedback from the people we serve (pages 10–11)? How can we accurately capture data about our projects (page 6)? And how does advocacy make a difference (pages 12–13)? 

I hope you will find this edition an inspiration for your own work, and that you will continue enjoying Footsteps for many years to come. 

Zoe Burden, Editor

PS We have recently welcomed Helen Gaw back to the editorial team. Our next edition, Footsteps 101, will be published in January 2017, in an all-new format.

Please find below articles from Footsteps issue 100 in html.

To download a PDF version of Footsteps issue 100, please click here (PDF 1 MB).


  • Creating positive change

    We want to see communities and individuals transformed and flourishing. But how can we help bring this about? What will it look like? And how can we assess whether or not we are making progress towards this goal?

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  • Dreaming big

    When we analyse our work, it is all too easy to focus on what is wrong. A refreshing alternative to this is the appreciative enquiry approach.

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  • Engaging local government in Uganda

    Okulonyo is a small rural community in Uganda. Tearfund partner PAG began working with the church and community in 2008, helping them mobilise their resources to meet their needs.

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  • Getting the most out of a survey

    A survey is a great way to capture a large amount of data. Unfortunately, surveys are often not as effective as they could be because of poorly worded questions.

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  • How I use Footsteps

    Tarsis Hurmali, Director of the development organisation Yayasan Ayo Indonesia, has been receiving Footsteps for more than six years. We had the privilege of interviewing Tarsis about the way he uses Footsteps.

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  • How to get genuine feedback

    It is vital to get honest feedback from the people who are benefiting from our projects. This helps us to know what is working well and what needs to be changed.

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  • Keeping a good record

    Thinking in advance about how to collect and store data can save us much frustration and many hours’ work afterwards.

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  • Letters

    Over the years, Footsteps has covered topics from water to women’s health, from pollution to poultry-keeping. Recently we asked you which Footsteps article had been most helpful to you.

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  • Resources

    A selection of books, websites and training material about creating positive change.

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  • The Footsteps survey

    If you have been reading Footsteps for several years now, you will remember receiving our readership survey in the post. More than a thousand of you faithfully answered our questions and gave us valuable feedback.

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