Foundation Selects Salt Lake County, Utah, as Evidence2Success Partner

Posted October 6, 2015, By the Annie E. Casey Foundation

Blog Foundation Selects Salt Lake City 2015

The Foun­da­tion has select­ed Salt Lake Coun­ty, Utah, as one of the next com­mu­ni­ties to imple­ment Evidence2Success, a frame­work that brings pub­lic agency and res­i­dent lead­ers togeth­er to use data and proven pro­grams to improve child well-being.

Salt Lake Coun­ty was select­ed, in part, because of its lead­er­ship in using inno­v­a­tive financ­ing meth­ods to invest in its chil­dren, launch­ing the nation’s first effort to finance pub­lic preschool edu­ca­tion using a pay‐​for‐​success mod­el in 2013. The mod­el gen­er­at­ed $7 mil­lion to expand pro­grams for chil­dren from low‐​income families.

Salt Lake Coun­ty impressed us with a strong coali­tion that includes lead­ers from the major sys­tems that serve chil­dren along with res­i­dents and young peo­ple who are ready to roll up their sleeves to invest in kids in a dif­fer­ent way,” said Suzanne Barnard, direc­tor of the Foundation’s Evi­dence-Based Prac­tice Group.

The Salt Lake Coun­ty effort will focus ini­tial­ly on Kearns Town­ship and sev­er­al adja­cent neigh­bor­hoods that are part of its pub­lic school sys­tems. Kearns, the most diverse town­ship in the coun­ty, with a third of its res­i­dents under the age of 18, is unique­ly posi­tioned to take advan­tage of the Evidence2Success framework.

Evidence2Success helps pub­lic sys­tem lead­ers and com­mu­ni­ty res­i­dents work togeth­er to gath­er data on the needs and strengths of local youth, use the data to set pri­or­i­ty areas to improve the well-being of young peo­ple and shift pub­lic fund­ing to address those needs with pro­grams that research has proven effec­tive.

As part of the Evidence2Success part­ner­ship, the Casey Foun­da­tion will pro­vide a dol­lar-for-dol­lar match of up to $150,000 in local funds ded­i­cat­ed to evi­dence-based pro­grams that will be cho­sen through the frame­work. But beyond its grant dol­lars, the Foun­da­tion pro­vides tools and tech­ni­cal assis­tance, includ­ing hands-on coach­ing, pub­lic financ­ing strate­gies and access to the Blue­prints data­base of evi­dence-based pro­grams to help com­mu­ni­ties imple­ment more effec­tive approach­es for children.

With this fund­ing, we will be able to deter­mine how chil­dren in Kearns are doing today, choose pro­grams that are proven to work in areas where kids aren’t thriv­ing and devel­op financ­ing and action plans to ensure the effort con­tin­ues and suc­ceeds,” said Salt Lake Coun­ty May­or Ben McAdams.

Salt Lake Coun­ty has assem­bled an ini­tial steer­ing com­mit­tee of 22 mem­bers to over­see the Evidence2Success process. This group will use data from the Stu­dent Health and Risk Pre­ven­tion (SHARP) Statewide Sur­vey, tak­en every two years by 6th, 8th, 10th and 12th graders in the Gran­ite School Dis­trict, to assess the strengths and needs of local young peo­ple and set pri­or­i­ties for choos­ing pro­grams. Young peo­ple are being direct­ly engaged in the process. Stu­dents in Kearns will be able to use maps, data and oth­er tools to craft their own vision and plan for the future of the area and present their work to par­ents, con­sul­tants and part­ners. The part­ner­ship also will engage youth in sim­i­lar ways through oth­er youth-based orga­ni­za­tions, includ­ing those host­ed by cul­tur­al and faith groups.

The Foun­da­tion intro­duced the Evidence2Success frame­work in two neigh­bor­hoods in Prov­i­dence, R.I., start­ing in 2012. Under the lead­er­ship of the Prov­i­dence Chil­dren and Youth Cab­i­net, com­mu­ni­ty and sys­tem lead­ers in those com­mu­ni­ties used data from the Youth Expe­ri­ence Sur­vey to choose three pri­or­i­ty areas: school absen­teeism, anx­i­ety and depres­sion and delin­quen­cy. The group has cho­sen six evi­dence-based pro­grams – three of which are under­way and serv­ing more than 2,000 young peo­ple. The Chil­dren and Youth Cab­i­net recent­ly received a state grant of up to $1 mil­lion to expand the use of those pro­grams over the next four years.

Learn more about Evidence2Success

Watch a video about Evidence2Success

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