Communities on the Move

The Health & Society research project on (cost)effectiveness of Communities on the Move started in 2012. Rationale for the study is the fact that interventions are not yet successful in substantially improving physical activity levels of low socioeconomic status groups in the Netherlands.

The Netherlands Institute for Sports and Physical Activity (NISB) developed a communitybased program enhancing physical activity in inactive low SES target groups: Communities on the Move. The aim of CoM is to enhance physical activity levels of low SES groups, in order to contribute to social participation, quality of life and life satisfaction of individual participants. Since 2003, Communities on the Move has been carried out by a variety of (semi-) professional user organisations in nearly 40 municipalities, reaching over 100 groups. Participatory community-based physical activity interventions such as Communities on the Move seem promising. Evaluating their effectiveness, however, is challenging. The Communities on the Move research project focuses on the development of a context-sensitive monitoring and evaluation approach in order to:

  1. Measure the effectiveness, including the cost-effectiveness, of Communities on the Move at multiple levels (individual, group, program and community level);
  2. Develop and test an evaluation design enabling the identification of underlying mechanisms which explain what works and why in community-based physical activity programs.

A cohort design is used, based on multiple cases, measuring impact, processes and changes at each of the distinguished levels. Methods will be developed to evaluate both short-run and long-run effects, costs and benefits of Communities on the Move.

Click here to read more about the project and its results (Dutch).

Project executed by Marion Herens.