August 20, 2009

South Carolina Center for Fathers and Families recognized as Promising Practice

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office of Family Assistance recently released a report, Emerging Findings from the Office of Family Assistance Healthy Marriage and Responsible Fatherhood Grant Programs: A Review of Select Grantee Profiles and Promising Results, which features the South Carolina Center for Fathers and Families as a Promising Practice.

Promising Practices are defined as programmatic functions, activities, and processes for which an evidence base does not yet exist, but for which staff programmatic experience, experts in the fields, and experienced technical advisors agree are beneficial to overall program functioning. The report features eight Healthy Marriage programs and eight Responsible Fatherhood programs.

The report will be used to inform White House Administration, Congress and practitioners in the field about promising practices of the Healthy Marriage and Responsible Fatherhood programs and outcomes. The full color, 44-page report features photos and testimonies and was distributed to more than 600 attendees at the recent Office for Family Assistance conference held in Washington, D.C. August 12-14, 2009.

The process began in September 2008 with more than 100 sites initially nominated as a potential Promising Practice. Through a series of reviews and critiques, the field was narrowed to 21 grantees with 16 featured in the report. James Bell Associates performed extensive reviews with an emphasis on curriculum, staffing, training, services, recruitment and retention, community partnerships and evaluation outcomes to narrow down the nominated grantees. Dr. Irene Luckey prepared an extensive report for James Bell Associates detailing the Initiative's outcomes. The Center also participated in multiple conference call interviews and hosted James Bell Associates for a day-long on-site visit.

Common practices discovered among all grantees were the use of an evidence-based curriculum; a reluctance to modify the curriculum; caring and professional front line staff; thorough training of staff on the curriculum; involvement of community partners as important referral sources; and an established reputation within the community and good word-of-mouth from past participants.

For more information, visit the Administration for Children and Families

http://www.acf.hhs.gov/ Website or the South Carolina Center for Fathers and Families http://www.scfathersandfamilies.com/

Website.

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From its Cleveland headquarters, the Sisters of Charity Health System provides oversight, leadership and strategic direction to more than 20 organizations responding to community needs in Canton and Cleveland, Ohio, and South Carolina.

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