Evaluating Firearm Suicide Prevention


To identify and visualize the impact of a statewide, multidimensional funding initiative designed to prevent firearm suicide, where, due the complexity of the problem and the diversity of stakeholders, a traditional evaluation approach would be ineffective.


Openfields designed and implemented a developmental evaluation that provides MFH and grantees timely insights across multiple dimensions of the initiative including the impact of a grantee learning cohort, a statewide messaging campaign, and an initiative to put firearm suicide on the agenda of strategic institutions around the state.

In the nascent field of firearm suicide prevention where there are few best practices to rely on, timely and relevant feedback is critical to designing and implementing effective strategies. Therefore, our evaluation approach centered on working collaboratively with the project implementers, cultivating a deep understanding of their context, open inquiry, active listening, and synthesizing multiple types of data. As a result, the foundation and grantees are able to translate findings into strategic plans and immediate program design improvements.

In close collaboration with MFH and grantees, we developed:

  • Organizational capacity assessments
  • Stakeholder mapping and social network analysis
  • Data analysis and visualizations customized for each grantee
  • State-based data analysis customized for the learning cohort
  • Cohort feedback loops

>> Read about out Firearm Suicide Prevention learning cohort developed with MFH.