In this article, we examine the contributions and challenges of participation and observation in evaluating the efficacy of a Youth-Participatory Action Research (Youth-PAR) project. Participation and observation help us, as evaluators, assess intervention fidelity, identify implementation issues, and make suggestions for changes in the way the intervention is delivered. In this article we examine our individual experiences as observers in order to question critically how we, as research instruments, affect the data we collect and the inferences we draw. We provide preliminary analysis of process data collected through observation to discuss the role of project facilitators, examine how congruent their delivery is to the theory of the intervention, and provide them with ongoing feedback. We conclude with some of the issues raised by non-participant observation as a method of process evaluation and the unique contribution that it offers to comprehensive assessment of youth participatory action research programs.

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