State Grant to Expand Use of Proven Programs in Providence, Rhode Island

Posted March 11, 2015, By the Annie E. Casey Foundation

The Foun­da­tion’s part­ners in Prov­i­dence, Rhode Island, have received a state grant to expand the use of proven pro­grams to enhance child well-being in two focus neigh­bor­hoods as part of Casey’s first Evidence2Success site. 

The Prov­i­dence Chil­dren and Youth Cab­i­net, which serves as the home orga­ni­za­tion to Evidence2Success in Prov­i­dence, will receive up to $1 mil­lion over the next four years to increase the reach of two evi­dence-based pro­grams in West End and South Prov­i­dence: Pos­i­tive Action and Incred­i­ble Years. These two pro­grams address chron­ic school absence, emo­tion­al well-being and delin­quent behav­ior among local youth — pri­or­i­ty out­comes cho­sen by a rep­re­sen­ta­tive group of pub­lic sys­tem lead­ers and local res­i­dents based on sur­vey results from neigh­bor­hood young people.

The new grant was award­ed by the Rhode Island Depart­ment of Health to cre­ate Health Equi­ty Zones to improve chil­dren’s health and well-being using fund­ing from the fed­er­al Cen­ters for Dis­ease Con­trol and Prevention.

The HEZ fund­ing comes in addi­tion to $234,000 already com­mit­ted by local pub­lic agen­cies to three evi­dence-based pro­grams cho­sen as part of the Evidence2Success process. In addi­tion to the Rhode Island Health Depart­ment, these agen­cies include the Prov­i­dence Pub­lic School Depart­ment and Rhode Island Depart­ment of Chil­dren, Youth and Fam­i­lies. All three pro­grams are cur­rent­ly being pilot­ed with 2,000 youth in West End and South Providence. 

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 well-being young peo­ple and shift pub­lic fund­ing to address those needs with pro­grams that research has proven effec­tive. The Foun­da­tion pro­vides tools and tech­ni­cal assis­tance such as the Youth Expe­ri­ence Sur­vey, pub­lic financ­ing strate­gies and the Blue­prints data­base of evi­dence-based pro­grams to help com­mu­ni­ties imple­ment Evidence2Success, and will choose new com­mu­ni­ties to begin the Evidence2Success process lat­er this year.

This grant shows exact­ly what we hope will hap­pen with Evidence2Success – that com­mu­ni­ties can work togeth­er with their gov­ern­ment sys­tem lead­ers to find a bet­ter way of invest­ing pub­lic resources for young peo­ple, and that demon­strat­ing this data-dri­ven, col­lab­o­ra­tive process will attract new pub­lic and pri­vate invest­ments to sup­port what works for kids,” said Suzanne Barnard, direc­tor of Casey’s Evi­dence-Based Prac­tice Group, which man­ages Evidence2Success.

For more infor­ma­tion, read the press release from the Prov­i­dence Chil­dren and Youth Cabinet. 

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