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ERIC Number: ED500007
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2007-Jan
Pages: 34
Abstractor: Author
Family Strengthening at the Tipping Point: Emerging Transformation in the Human Services Field. Policy Brief No. 18
Online Submission
This report describes the results of a 2006 formative study by the Family Strengthening Policy Center, National Human Services Assembly to collect quantitative and anecdotal evidence that since 2003 the human services field has integrated place-based, family-strengthening approaches into their policies, programs, and practices. The Annie E. Casey Foundation supported the study as part of its Making Connections initiative, the premise of which is that children do better when their families are strong, and families do better when they live in communities that help them to succeed. Through structured online surveys and semi-structured telephone interviews, the Center queried national and community human services organizations about changes in programs, policies, and practices since 2003 that reflect neighborhood- or place-based, family-centered approaches to strengthening low-income families with children. The 39 national-level respondents span the human services field (youth development, community building, family services, adult education and training, emergency services, and more). The community-level survey received responses from 224 organizations in 45 states. Among national organizations, more than 60 percent reported changes in online and written communications, public policy initiatives, education and supports for community groups, and worksite policies and practices that reflect a family-strengthening approach. Among community respondents that have never had a Making Connections grant, more than half have made three or four changes to their policies, programs, and practices that reflect family strengthening. Examples provided by respondents show that the family-strengthening approach is adaptable to a wide array of settings, services, populations, and purposes. The study results demonstrate that the human services field and its organizations are changing in ways that reflect place-based family strengthening approaches, and the evolution is also occurring among organizations that have never received Making Connections grants. The extent of these changes suggests human services organizations are mainstreaming family strengthening into their daily work instead of creating stand-alone programs. The challenge ahead for the field is replicating successful programs and mobilizing stable and secure funding sources to sustain the transformation, especially at the community level. Study results are exploratory and not generalizable to the human services sector. Appended are: (1) List of Organizations Represented by the Individual Respondents; and (2) Methodology. (Contains 4 endnotes and 15 figures.) [This document was published by Family Strengthening Policy Center, National Human Services Assembly.]
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Tests/Questionnaires
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: Annie E. Casey Foundation, Baltimore, MD.
Authoring Institution: N/A
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A