Chris Sissons

Community Project Development Support

Quote of the month

September 2013

I'm working on a replacement for this site. Follow my progress at Community Web Design. This is an experimental site, watch out for the launch of the finished site in the near future. 

Chris Sissons

Ask Chris

1 January 2013

  • Why do we evaluate projects?
  • Do we need to collect evidence?
  • How do we collect it?
  • For whom?
  • When?
  • What do we do with it?
  • Will pictures of the event suffice?
  • Who should be involved?
  • How long should it take?
  • Examples of doing evaluations
  • Examples of bad practice
  • Examples of good practice
  • What would be the needs of the funders?
  • How long do we keep it?
  • Will it just gather dust on the shelf?

Charlie, W Yorkshire

Go to Ask Chris for my answer.

About Chris Sissons

Supertram bridge, Park Square, Sheffield

I have lived in inner city Sheffield (Pitsmoor) since 1992 and before that I was a community development worker in Middlesbrough and North Tyneside.

During the 1990s I worked for Industrial Mission in South Yorkshire as a Community Economic Development Worker in the Lower Don Valley area of Sheffield. Amongst other things I developed the Darnall JobLink, Attercliffe and Darnall Community Enterprises and the Stanniforth Arms Community Pub.

After this period of 8 years in the Lower Don Valley, I decided to specialise in community development and worked for Rotherham Metropolitan Borough Council as a Community Development Worker. I helped the borough write and complete 2 of their first community plans in Maltby and Whiston. We used participatory methods and engaged with many people in bringing together priorities in two very different communities. During that period I developed skills in strategic management and non-directive consultancy.

Almost by chance, I had an opportunity to work for the British Methodist Church at their Resourcing Mission Officer in Manchester. I was responsible for their mission and ministry grants for the whole country. I supported many community projects by phone and email. I was also responsible for church reviews and partnership working between different church traditions.

Since I was made redundant in 2011, I have worked for six months on a business plan for a Centre for Spirituality and Creativity (hover over this paragraph for more information).

I have also taken the opportunity to add web design to my skills and so enhance what I can offer to community projects. Many church and community projects do not make best use of their online presence and so need help from someone who understands both community development and website design. I have already learned a lot, which I'm keen to share with projects and you'll see how my learning is progressing as I add new features to this site.

Relevant Qualifications

Date Qualification
2011 - 2012 CIW Web Foundations Associate
2002 - 2004 Postgraduate Diploma in Consultancy, Mission and Ministry: The University of Sheffield
2000 - 2002 NVQ D32/D33 Assessor Award, Assessment Centre for Voluntary Organisations
1998 - 1999 Strategic Management, NVQ level 5, Competence at Work
1993 - 1997 Master of Theology in Applied Theology. Passed with distinction: University of Oxford.
1987 - 1989 Adult Teachers’ Certificate, City and Guilds 730, Redcar College


For some years Endcliffe Methodist Church had been working on a broad new initiative to become more integrated and involved with the local community at Hunter’s Bar. In Autumn 2011 we had reached the stage where we needed help and guidance to prepare a Business Plan and other community/business related tasks. We appointed Chris on a 6 month contract from November 2011. He bought new ideas and fresh skills to the table. He challenged and changed our thinking and opened up a whole host of new possibilities for us to pursue. He wrote a very comprehensive business plan which we debated, amended in parts and then accepted.Without Chris’s significant expertise in this area of community/church development our current initiative would be much poorer. We gratefully acknowledge his assistance and wholeheartedly recommend him to others for similar tasks elsewhere.

John Bailey – Chair of Development Team.