Abstract: Cross Systems Collaboration: A Framework within Child Welfare and Supportive Housing (Society for Prevention Research 24th Annual Meeting)

443 Cross Systems Collaboration: A Framework within Child Welfare and Supportive Housing

Thursday, June 2, 2016
Bayview A (Hyatt Regency San Francisco)
* noted as presenting author
Bridgette Lery, PhD, Senior Planning Analyst, San Francisco Human Services Agency, San Francisco, CA
Jennifer Haight, phd, Senior Researcher, Chapin Hall, Chicago, IL
Anne F. Farrell, PhD, Associate Professor, University of Connecticut, Stamford, CT
Patrick J. Fowler, PhD, Assistant Professor, Washington University in St. Louis, St. Louis, MO
The co-occurrence of homelessness, child welfare involvement, and related family comorbidities is a multidetermined and now well-established phenomenon (Dworsky 2014; Fowler et al., 2013; Ziotnick 2009). The need to collaborate across service systems in order to address the multiple needs of these families in service of improved well being is clear (Banks, Landsverk, & Wang 2008; CSH 2011), as doing so effectively can increase service use and improve outcomes for families (Fowler, et al., 2013; Bai, Wells & Hillemeier 2008; Harburger & White, 2004). Yet, accomplishing effective, sustained cross-system collaboration is difficult. This presentation asserts the need for a new framework that treats cross-systems as an intervention in of itself; members of five federal demonstration projects that entail partnerships in housing and child welfare present their intervention models along with the benefits and challenges associated with collaboration. We explicate a new framework, which incorporates elements of implementation science and organizational theory, and requires sequenced implementation tasks. We then provide initial validation that involves input from the five federal housing and child welfare demonstration projects and other partnerships that address family and child well being.

Specifically, this presentation:

1) Explains the need for cross-system collaboration in the housing and child welfare context, e.g., a multi-site federal demonstration project and its core features in evidence across the demonstration sites, all of which are randomized controlled trials;

2) Describes a cross systems collaboration framework that blends implementation science and organizational theory and draws on the collective impact literature with respect to the sequence of activities required, including examples from sites; and

3) Discusses initial testing and validation of this new framework for treating cross-system coordination as an intervention itself (with sequenced implementation tasks) in order to achieve collective impact among partner organizations supporting families with child welfare, housing, and related challenges.

This approach enables the classification of early success and challenges of coordination across child welfare and other systems applying a new framework. Based on findings to date, we suggest adjustments to the framework and speculate regarding how it might be adopted and refined in similar cross-systems endeavors intended to shore up vulnerable families.

This presentation will include the shared, pooled findings from the five demonstration sites with respect to cross systems collaboration, as well as selective summary findings from process, outcomes, and cost analyses. The process evaluations include implementation and fidelity observations, collaboration surveys, and related research. The outcomes evaluations address parent, child, and family outcomes. Cost analysis data includes the cost of homelessness and the cost of service provision to prevent and intervene. Sites present selected findings that illustrate the fruits of collaboration.