This article deals with the relationship between approaches to evaluation and program perspectives. When evaluated by traditional approaches, programs based on a "direct help" perspective, oriented toward addressing deficits, tend to yield the depressing result that "nothing works." Programs based on an "indirect help" perspective, favouring people's active involvement, require evaluation approaches that are able to value innovation and change, such as positive thinking approaches. This article reviews and compares several of these approaches and analyzes them against those two program perspectives. The article also considers to what extent positive thinking evaluation approaches may be appropriate for evaluating programs of the "direct help" perspective as well as of those based on "indirect help."