When TANF Intersects with Pregnant Teen and Young Parent Services

When TANF Intersects with Pregnant Teen and Young Parent Services


Welcome to “When TANF Intersects with Pregnant
Teens and Young Parents Services” webinar. My name is Jennifer Gillissen and I am from
Kauffman and Associates. I will be your moderator today along with Carol Mizoguchi. I would
like to start with explaining a little bit about the webinar interface. You should all
see the first slides for the PowerPoint presentation, and there is a Q&A box to the right. We will
be answering questions at the end of the webinar, but you can enter a question at any time in
the Q&A box. If you need technical assistance during the webinar, please use the Q&A box.
Please note that this webinar is being recorded and please remember to provide your feedback
on the webinar using the survey that will appear in a separate pop-up window when the
webinar ends. I will now turn it over to Carol. Thank you, Jennifer. So, good afternoon and
thank you all for joining today’s webinar, “When TANF Intersects with Pregnant Teens
and Young Parents Services.” We’re really excited and happy to have a slate of expert
presenters to discuss this important topic with you. My name is Carol Mizoguchi and I
am at the Office of Family Assistance, and I will moderate the webinar along with Jennifer.
The webinar offers us an opportunity to share the latest ideas, practices, and program approaches
around serving pregnant and parenting teens and young adults. Over the last two decades,
teen pregnancy rates have declined nationally; however, teen parents and their children are
still at a greater risk for living in poverty and for that poverty to be generational and
more likely to contend with the lack of work opportunities. Nearly two-thirds of teen mothers
receive some type of public benefit within the first year of their child’s life, and
50% of teen mothers live in poverty by the time their child is three. TANF can provide
key support to teen parents as they navigate parenthood and supporting their children.
So today, on this webinar, the audience will learn about promising and successful approaches
to engaging low-income parents and parents and teens. And also, you’ll have the opportunity
to hear about experiences and lessons learned from three programs that have created innovative
approaches to working with teen parents and young parents using those partnerships with
TANF. We’re very fortunate to have five dynamic presenters. We have folks who will
share with us from the federal perspective of serving pregnant and parenting teens. We’ll
also hear from Minnesota’s Department of Human Services. We’ll hear from an innovative
program in Wyoming and also from Training Resources of America’s Young Parents Program.
Throughout the presentation, you will have an opportunity to ask questions through the
chat box in the bottom left corner of your screen. We encourage you to ask questions
and if you have questions for specific presenters or programs, please make sure you specify
when you ask your question. During the webinar, we’ll also have a series of polling questions
that will appear in your screen. We ask that you please answer by clicking on the radio
button next to your selected response and doing so will help us guide the discussion,
but it will also help provide additional information that may inform your practice. This afternoon
we’ll first hear from Sabrina Chapple and Cassandra Chess. Sabrina is the Acting Division
Director for the Pregnancy Assistance Fund Program within the Office of Adolescent Health,
and Cassandra serves as the Public Health Advisor at the Office of Adolescent Health.
Adolescent Health administers a variety of programs to address and support pregnant and
parenting teens and releases relevant research regarding this population. After their presentation,
we will hear from Deborah Slick with the Minnesota Department of Health Services. Minnesota recently
redesigned their services to teen parents who participate in TANF through a home visiting
collaboration between the Department of Human Services and the Department of Health. Then,
we will hear from Sarah Brino who is the Statewide Mental Health Coordinator at Climb Wyoming,
a nonprofit organization that trains and places low income, single parents in higher-paying
careers. And finally, we will hear from Kristi Bruwer, Manager and Young Parents Demonstration
Coordinator at Training Resources of America. Training Resources of America is a Massachusetts-based
nonprofit that provides education, employment, and training services to pregnant and parenting
teens between the ages of 14 and 23. We have our first polling question for the audience.
“What percentage of your clients consist of pregnant and parenting teens or young parents?”
(Pause.) Okay, it looks like we have about 35% that *** (unclear – 6:19) on the phone
has selected between 10 and 20% of their clients consists of parents and pregnant…parenting
teens. At this time, I’m going to turn it over to Sabrina and Cassandra.
Hello and thank you all, and thanks to the organizers and host of today’s webinar.
The Office of Adolescent Health is pleased to present. And I’m Sabrina Chapple and
I’m one of the division directors here at the Office of Adolescent Health, and I oversee
the Pregnancy Assistance, um, the program. I’m also grateful to be joined by my colleague
and fellow project officer Cassandra Chess. We…At the Office of Adolescent Health, we’re
very excited to be a partner with you as we work together to continue to strengthen families
and provide support to those most in need. Our agenda—today, we’ll discuss the federal
perspective of serving pregnant and parenting teens, highlight some of the needs of this
population and how our grantees are meeting those needs, and then we’ll briefly highlight
some of the relevance of research and findings from the field. The mission of the Office
of Adolescent Health is to advance best practices to improve the health and well-being of American
adolescents. Our office is led by our director Evelyn Kappeler and we are responsible for
coordinating adolescent health initiatives across the United States Department of Health
and Human Services. We are the convener of Adolescent Health: Think, Act, Grow (or TAG),
which is a national partner engagement strategy focused on adolescent health. In addition,
we also administer and support several grant programs, including teen pregnancy prevention
programs, the Pregnancy Assistance Fund—which I’ll talk about today—and the National
Resource Center for HIV/AIDS prevention among adolescents. For a long time, we’ve known
that adolescence is a very rapid time for growth and development comparable only to
the growth that takes place during early childhood. And, as noted earlier, compounded with this
rapid growth and development, having a child at a young age can impact young mothers’
and fathers’ transition to adulthood, placing them and their children at risk of adverse
outcomes, including negative health, economic, and social consequences. I won’t go back
through the teen birth rate data, but as Carol noted, despite the progress that has been
made at reducing teen and unintended pregnancies, it is estimated in 2014 that nearly 250,000
babies were born to females in the age group of 15 to 19. It is also important to note
that not all teen births are first births. In 2014, one in six, about 17%, births, so
15- to 19-year-olds were females who already had one or more babies. Comparing with their
peers, teens face multiple risk factors, multiple risk for poor life outcome. Compared with
their peers who delay childbearing, teen girls who have babies are less likely to finish
high school and more likely to rely on public assistance and more likely to be poor as adults.
Teen fathers are also less likely to graduate from high school and they’re more likely
to face fewer employment opportunities than their non-parent peer. Pregnant teens and
women are also often victims of violence. Studies have found that adolescent girls in
physically abusive relationships were three times more likely to become pregnant than
a non-abused girl. Additionally, children born to teenagers often face array of challenges,
including poor educational, behavioral, health outcomes throughout their lives compared to
children born to older parents. It is for these reasons that young families need the
same support as any other family. Parents of all ages need support to thrive. This is
why the TANF Work and the Pregnancy Assistance Fund program—why our work is so important.
It’s critical that we build on the strengths of young families and work as partnership
with families and the community, and support them on their path to a healthy and productive
future. Now, the federal government has a history of addressing and supporting the needs
of pregnant and parenting teens through a myriad of programs over the years. Now, I’ve
been with the Pregnancy Assistance Program for the last 5 years and, upon my research,
I found that, for nearly 38 years, we have provided funding to serve and meet the needs
of this population. These efforts began in the late 70s to the current day PAF program.
More notably, most of these programs have not been able to meet all the needs of this
particular volatile population. Most of the programs have been demonstration pilots and,
as such, as the PAF program, a competitive funding program whereby we don’t fund all
states, but it is equally important to note that the Pregnancy Assistance Fund at this
time, notably, is the only federal program solely focused on meeting the needs of this
population. Established by Congress in 2010 as a part of the Patient Protection and Affordability
Care Act, the PAF grant program was a key element of the federal strategy to support
expected and parenting teens, women, fathers, and their families. Again, it’s administered
by our office and we provide 25 million annually through competitive grants to states/tribes
to develop and implement programs to support this volatile population. As you can see with
this slide, the needs of the expected and pregnant teens are of many. Young families
need a safe and supportive and inclusive environment to survive. Our PAF programs are centered
in high schools, community centers, and colleges, and they also are a seamless network of support
services, including assistance to access to housing, health care, job training and placement,
educational support, child care, and even just the simple practical needs of young families,
such as diapers and formula. Our PAF funds are also used to improve services for pregnant
women who are victims of domestic violence, sexual violence, assault, and stalking. We
have funded three cohorts since 2010 and we anticipate developing a new Funding Opportunity
Announcement for another round of competition for PAF funds. It is anticipated that this
FOA will be released in the winter of 2017. And as you can see with this slide, we list
all the different number of grantees per cohort, the different focus of each particular Funding
Opportunity Announcement. At this time, there are 20 funded PAF grantees. The grantees are
a combination of our Cohort Two and Three, which we previously just highlighted, and
they receive funds between 500 to 1.5 million per year to implement their program. And these
photos are all provided courtesy of our programs. These are our young parents and their children.
This slide shows all of our current PAF grantees and, as you can see, PAF programs are being
implemented all across the country. Each program is unique and you can find more information
on our website about each program. They’re implementing service either statewide or they
may have a specific emphasis in targeting a very specific community. Now the PAF program
offers support funding in four categories. These include supporting expecting and parenting
students in institutions of higher education, supporting the particular population of high
schools and community centers, as well as supporting pregnant women who are victims
of domestic violence, and then increasing public awareness and education services. The
majority of our grantees are a Category Two. It’s important to note that not all categories
are mutually exclusive. Most grantees are implementing grants across two or more categories.
The OAH program is making the difference in the lives of young families and generations
to come just simply based on our Cohort 2 Year Two performance measures. We have served
over 16,000 expecting and parenting teens, women, and their fathers, but we don’t stop
there. We actually also serve their families. We serve nearly 1,200 family members, we work
with more than 1,100 implementation partners, and we have trained nearly 1,500 professionals.
And that, again, is just for cohort tier Year 2. We’re continuing to expand our programmatic
efforts to recruit, retain, and engage our fathers. Our grantees are working to build
their programs from the start to be sustainable. We implemented three federal evaluations that
we collect a standard percent of performance measures, and we continue to provide ongoing
support throughout the year. I would like to share some preliminary data, again, from
our cohort tier Year 2, um, and, as you can see, the vast majority of the young families
served by the PAF program are females and their children and the majority of the participants
are 16 years or older. We also see here, noted by our slides, that approximately 29% of the
participants identified as white, 30% African-American, with nearly 54% served identifying as Hispanic
and Latino origin. I’m now going to turn the presentation over to my colleague Cassandra
Chess to talk to you a little bit about some expert panels that we’ve conducted, as well
as our implementation report. Ms. Chess: Thank you, Sabrina. Hi and good
afternoon. For the next few minutes, I will present on findings from two expert panels
conducted in 2012 and 2015 and key findings through our research PAF implementation report.
Lastly, I will touch on upcoming activities for the PAF program, our OAH Resource Center,
and how you can connect with us after this webinar. (Pause.) A little technical difficulty.
In January and July 2012, the Office of Adolescent Health convened a panel of experts in D.C.
to discuss strategies and gaps in the field of support for pregnant and parenting teens.
This session sought for what works for pregnant and parenting teens. The experts surpassed
with summarizing the state of the field, prioritizing gaps and challenges, and identifying opportunities
and support for pregnant and parenting teens. The ultimate goal was to advance the field.
We wanted to hear input and suggestions for how we can add to the field generally and
specifically to support PAF grantees. The key findings are on the next few slides and
were categorized under Promising Practices, which include recent pregnant and parenting
teens, engaging pregnant and parenting teens, and training pregnant and parenting teens.
And as you can see, there are a number of examples that the panelists recommended for
each of these various categories. Other key findings came under the category of Core Components
and were categorized under education; integrated services and referrals; strong assistance;
provided relationships; well-defined programs over the processes; and again, as you see
listed here, a number of recommendations that the panelists came up with for each of these
categories. And another slide of core components, looking at family relationships, developmental
influences, and how we fill staff, and welcoming program environments, and other recommendations
panelists made. Conclusions of the panel was that there’s a need to re-frame and destigmify
the discourse of added pregnant and parenting teens; engage the teens themselves in a conversation;
emphasize positive possibilities, as opposed to focusing on preventing problems; build
parental relationships between youth services and providers, providers and teens, teens
and families; and lastly, include a critical and ongoing view of the field, including training
outcomes, theory, and evaluation. A copy of the report can be found on the OAH website
using the search function and the title of the panel. The second panel was one on young
fathers where the Office convened a group of panels that actually examined the challenges
and needs of young fathers, identifying limitations of the current knowledge base for this population,
and prioritizing strategies to build the capacity of PAF grantees and other programs working
with young fathers to include, retain, and engage young fathers. Some of the findings
from the panel include categories such as the need to understand experiences of young
fathers. Some of the considerations for that category are listed here. Other findings were
looking at the servicing of young fathers and looking at potential strategy for recruiting,
maintaining, and engaging young fathers, which fall under the categories you see listed on
this slide. Lastly, the… I’m going to provide a summary of a report released this
year that focused on our 17 PAF grantees that were funded in 2013.. And their funding ends
June 30, 2017. And 10 of these grantees…notably, this was their second round of funding. The
study addressed key issues related to grant strategy and content, administration, and
program design and implementation. Some of the key findings were that grantees are building
programs that seek to address participant cognitive relief for multiple program components,
and that multi-component approaches require a high degree of service coordination which
can support programs for sustainability. And lastly, more needs to be done to develop the
evidence stage. Now, I want to share some upcoming activities for the PAF program, which
include a new funding announcement that is to be released in early 2017. PAF programs,
the authorization for the program, expires in 2019, and we will be engaging in conversations
about the future of the program with grantees and key stakeholders. The Office is…also
wants to be releasing some new tools and resources focusing on working with young fathers and
new resources were created to support and inform professionals of anyone working with
young fathers. We’re also going to be holding a career chat *** (unclear – 23:21) and some
suggestions on what key stakeholders can do. You can visit our PAF program and resource
center, connect with our state and tribal PAF programs and partner with the Office of
Adolescent Health to educate and inform others about the importance of serving and meeting
the needs of this population. I mentioned the OAH Resource Center on the previous slide,
and we have active resource centers: one on teen pregnancy, one on the Pregnancy Assistance
Fund, and one on adolescent HIV/AIDS. Each includes a variety of technical assistance
products, webinars, and resources. And lastly, this is how you can connect with us through
our website. We are on *** (unclear – 24:16.) You can email us. There’s our TANF email
address for more information, and you can subscribe to these updates on the OAH homepage.
Thank you for your time. Okay, thank you, ladies. And now it’s time
for our second poll question. “Does your state or county engage young parents in a
different or unique way than other TANF participants?” (Pause.) So, it looks like we have most of
our responses in. Um, about 59% say yes. That’s great. And now I’m going to turn it over
to Deborah. Good morning or good afternoon, depending
on where you are listening to this in the country. I’m Deborah Slick. I work for the
Minnesota Department of Human Services. (Audio cut out. 25:38 – 26:02.) …services, but
we’re trying to add the home visitor to become the TANF worker. This started, actually,
not as a state, but it started as a local program. Ramsey County, our state’s second
largest county, has youth public health homes and training as the TANF service to teen parents
since 2003. So, teen parents who apply and are found eligible for our TANF program in
that county are automatically enrolled in home visiting services. And the young parents
who fit the criteria for an evidence-based model and who opt in for that model, they’ll
get their home visiting through the nurse family partnership model. So, if you know
anything about public health home visiting services, you know that’s a highly evaluated,
highly managed home visiting program. So, some young parents aren’t going to meet
the criteria for the model or they may not want to choose it. It’s a voluntary model
so that they receive their home visiting services from a locally developed home visiting model
delivered by the Public Health Department. And it’s important to know a couple of pieces
of context for Minnesota. In Minnesota, the Department of Human Services, where I work,
manages the TANF program. Our colleagues in the Department of Health manage the public
health home visiting. And in addition, in Minnesota we’re a state where state agencies
interpret policy and offer guidance that services are delivered at the local level. So in Minnesota,
counties are the ones delivering TANF services and at the local public health agency, which
is a public agency or sometimes the public health non-profits who are delivering the
home visiting services. And by the way, that the county borders and the local public health
agency borders may or may not coincide exactly. So, you can see that we have to work across
two state agencies and then we have to partner from the local to the state level, and then,
inside, local community’s partnership needs to happen. The mission of our efforts integrate
TANF services and home visiting services is that healthier babies and mothers. We see
young mothers graduating high school on time and babies developing on schedule. And to
give you, again, a little more context, so I’m going to give you 2014 numbers. Those
are the most recently published numbers where I can show you statewide and TANF numbers
that coincide. So with 2014, a few more than 2,700 teen parents gave birth to a baby in
Minnesota. In December of that year, when we looked at a snapshot of our TANF caseload,
we saw there were almost 2,200 teen parents receiving assistance in our TANF program from
the Minnesota Family Investment Program, but notice… Remember, I told you minor moms
are a priority, but very few of those moms are minor moms. Only about 220 of those 2,200
parents were younger than 18. So, what do we know about teen parents who turn to Minnesota’s
TANF program—and this, you’ll hear some themes that Sabrina also mentioned in her
presentation. But when we did an analysis a couple of years ago to look in-depth at
the teen parents who receive assistance, we saw that three-quarters of them had been in
households that received TANF assistance when those young moms were little kids. So, their
parents had also turned to assistance. And now that they’re young parents, we see that
only 9% of them receive any child support and that only 59% were enrolled in school
full-time. So, given that you…all of you are interested and already engaged in serving
teen parents, this won’t stop the surprises, but these are reasons we thought this was
a population. It’s very important for us to pay attention. So, why did we decide to
pay attention to this population through a collaboration? Well, first of all, home visiting,
public health home visiting, and the TANF program share the same mission for young families.
That mom and that baby will be healthier if mom’s education rises. Mom’s ability to
earn money, which TANF cares about, will be enhanced by the young mom having her health
care needs met and being comfortable and able to make the demand that having a child put
on her. So, we share a mission. Secondly, both agencies recognize that teen parents
are both a high risk, but also a high potential group. Um, and it’s important to pay attention
to the potential is the risk—that we invest because of the potential. We know that high
quality home visiting services have been shown to work, and I’m going to come back to that
in a second. And we believe collaboration uses public funds wisely. Our state puts money
into home visiting. Our state has been able to get federal funds for home visiting. Instead
of the TANF program reinventing a service for teen parents, we’d rather connect with
a service that is there and that shows promise. So, back to that piece about what shows effectiveness.
We looked at the research and saw that, while we’re on employment service, case management
models out of TANF or prior to TANF AFCC programs, weren’t changing high school graduation
rates…weren’t delaying the next pregnancy. So, we’re getting the, sort of, outcomes
that matter and there’s… The federal government, um, in the late 80s and early 90s, put a lot
of money into evaluation, but we have seen the research and evaluation that the quality
home visiting can improve outcomes for teen parents. A lot of that was national, but after
Ramsey County had been at their work for a while, the county turned to the University
of Minnesota who did some analysis and showed that, by implementing the home visiting services,
they, indeed, were increasing their graduation rate for their teen parents. And by the way,
we thought was interesting, that they were getting a better graduation rate for teen
parents who were enrolled in TANF than teen parents they were also doing home visiting
to, but they were voluntary and not associated with the TANF program. So anyway, we saw this
strong evidence that something is working in that home visiting for this population.
So, what we’re doing at a state level is our department, the Department of Human Services
is giving relatively small grants to local sites. We issue an RFP and the grant is used
to… It instigates and supports a collaboration, not supply the home visiting service. But
again, we funded home visiting and we want both the Human Service and the local public
health agencies to agree to start the collaboration with the idea that teen parents ought to be
a high shared priority with existing funds. So, our funds have gone to the state’s largest
county, Hennepin, which is…began, um in the last few years putting together a program
that looks very similar, but not identical to the Ramsey County program. We’re funding
one rural county. We’re funding a community, a secondary metropolitan area. If you’ve
heard of the Mayo Clinic in Minnesota, that’s located in Rochester, Minnesota—so, the
county that houses Rochester and the Mayo Clinic. And we’re giving an evaluation planning
grant to Ramsey County. So we, um, at the first stage, want to help them develop a very
rigorous evaluation plan and then see if we can get the resources’ fund and evaluation
that might tell us, “Is there, perhaps, a new evidence-based model around serving
teen parents and integrating that into TANF that could be useful to us and to others?”
So, what does TANF bring to this partnership of the two services coming together? TANF
brings access to childcare assistance. In Minnesota parents on the TANF program get
childcare assistance. They get help paying their childcare costs if they’re in activities
that they’re supposed to be in. If a teen parent that is going to high school…they
get, often, access to transportation resources and some other support resources. And in the
TANF program, we have connections with some very vulnerable young families that the home
visiting program would like to have a connection. So those are some of the assets TANF brings
to the partnership. Public health home visiting brings to the partnership evidence-based models.
We talked about that. But they also bring the stability. They bring this relationship-based
model, which is not really TANF’s strong point by any means, and they bring the ability
to maintain that serving relationship, whether or not the young parents are eligible for
TANF. Um, and so that’s important because our services in TANF come and go with someone’s
eligibility. Home visiting doesn’t have to rely on TANF eligibility. We use three
evidence-based home visiting programs currently in Minnesota: Healthy Families America, Nurse
Family Partnership, and Family Spirit. That last is an American Indian home visiting model
that’s being used on two of our reservations. But what are the challenges of bringing these
two service models together? So, most prominent is we’re asking approach or compliance,
which is TANF, and the culture of relationship, which is home visiting. And TANF mandatory
major, most particularly, are sanctions—the taking away of income if someone isn’t following
the rules—have to fit into a service model that has a very strong norm of voluntary services.
And though this is difficult, we’re finding it doable and we’re finding that the…facing
that difficulty benefits both sides. TANF benefits from that relationship-based model
and home visiting finds that, in the context of a strong relationship, they can explain
and encourage the young parents through the TANF rules and use the clarity of those rules
to keep our missions like, “We really do need you to stay in high school.” Um, and
other key pieces that are really going to matter to that new mother’s future and her
child, and to make these partnerships work at the local level, the local TANF and public
health agencies both need to be able to make referrals between each other so that TANF
program sees the teen mom…has to get that teen mom into the home visiting program. Like
at the home visiting program, depending on their outreach, may be seeing teen mom’s
not receiving TANF assistance who could benefit from those resources. But beyond making referrals,
they’ve really got to set up structures to share the management, the coordination
of those services, and then measuring those services. So, we really start seeing this
as a shared project with each other. Local public health agencies, in particular, need
to figure out the boundaries and flow between their evidence-based and their local home
visiting program. The nurse family partnership, for instance, needs visiting to begin by a
certain point in the pregnancy, but, often, teen parents show up months after the baby
is born. So, you want as many in the evidence-based program as possible, but you want an alternative
model available to back up as necessary. And primarily, that $50,000 money I told you about
that we’re giving local sites, that ends up funding social workers who can take on
that extra attention to school attendance, the interaction with the sanctions for teen
parents that are part of TANF, and allow the nurses to stay true to their evidence-based
practices. So, that’s with… Those are the two big amps of a local public health
agency that steps into this partnership with the local eligibility office. It needs to
build…is make a complex program more transparent. The rules are consulted. They’re consulted
for the young parents. They’re consulted for the home visiting nurse. The best way
they can do that is assign a designated eligibility worker who functions as a team member with
the nurses, with their social worker, so that everyone knows what’s expected now, what
are the rules, and how to work through those complex rules. So, thank you for your time.
Thank you for your mission and work for teen parents. My contact information and my colleagues
at the Minnesota Department of Health are available if anyone would like follow-up questions.
I think it goes back to Carol now. Yes; thank you, Deborah. And now we will hear
from Sarah. (Silence.)
Hello? (Silence.)
Okay, while we’re waiting for Sarah, I just… I noticed we have a question there. We did
say we could take questions throughout the presentation and I don’t know if this is
for a specific person. I think because Minnesota was presenting, perhaps the question is directed
at you, Deborah. It’s just asking, “Are your social workers MSWs?”
I don’t know that. I think, in many cases, they are, but again, because local counties
or local public health agencies hire and manage and supervise those social workers, it could
differ from site to site. Okay. Thank you.
Carol, this is Sarah. All right. Great. Thank you.
So sorry. I’m not sure what happened with my sound. I apologize everybody. Um, so my
name is Sarah Brino and I am here representing Climb Wyoming, and I’m pleased to be here.
Um, I have been with Climb for about 6 years and have been in various roles over the years,
and today I’m just going to be talking about the origins of Climb and where we started
and how we got to where we are today. We’ll talk a little bit about the Climb model, which
is what we do and how we do it—just the nuts and bolts of what we see every day—and
then, of course, the lessons we’ve learned—often times painfully and the hard way over the
years. To start, I’m not sure if anyone on the phone call is familiar with our organization.
I have a feeling not. We are a statewide nonprofit located in Wyoming and, as Carol mentioned
at the start of the program, our mission is for low income single mothers to discover
self-sufficiency through career, training, and placement. And so, basically, what that
means is that we really believe that training women in careers and placing them in jobs,
along with some other services and skills that we’ll talk about, really helps to open
the door to other change that has proven to be essential to disrupting multi-generational
poverty. Climb has been around for 30 years. We are celebrating our 30-year anniversary
this year and it all began back in 1986. That’s a picture of our executive director and founder,
Ray Fleming Dinneen. At that time in ‘86, there were a lot of organizations working
in this very challenging field of pregnancy prevention and young parents, and the government
at the time approached Ray and her mother who were both psychologists to just, basically,
try to figure out how to continue addressing this need in Wyoming. And these conversations,
coupled with Ray getting a lot of support from the local community, resulted in her
starting the young…The *** (unclear – 42:48) Parent Young Program in 1986. And during this
time, she worked with single mothers between the ages of 16 and 21. In 2004, after Ray
had been doing this work on her own for many years, we received a one-time TANF bonus grant
from the Wyoming Department of Family Services to extend the program across Wyoming. So,
at that time, we had just one site in Cheyenne and, in 2004, four other sites opened across
the state, including in Casper, Gillette, Jackson, and Laramie, with the original site
still existing in Cheyenne. And then the organization itself was renamed Climb Wyoming. And then,
in 2007, we expanded once again, as you can see from the slide, to Rock Springs, Wyoming.
So, at that time, Climb made the decision to begin serving women singles with mothers
of all ages who were still in the low income category. And over the past 30 years, our
model has evolved into what it is today. We’ll talk about that in a little bit, but we have
six sites across the state and several sites have continued expanding their programming
even further to reach more women. In Cheyenne, for example, we now run four programs a year.
Casper went from running two programs to three recently, and, of course, all of this is in
the hope of reaching more women across the state. And we did find that expanding services
to women of all ages has really been kind of an unexpected and lovely change to the
program because it provides mentoring opportunities with peers and really produces different kinds
of group dynamic that we didn’t experience before. So, we really enjoy that change. I
wanted to just give a brief overview of our organizational structure; because I think
that’s one of the things we really learned over the years has been a real benefit to
us. We have our Board of Directors who, together with our senior leadership, help drive the
strategic vision of the organization. And then there’s Ray, our executive director,
and the various buckets beneath that—if you see the four operations programs, communications,
and development that we refer to as our home office. And this infrastructure that, again,
evolved over the years was so fundamental to Climb getting to where it was today, because
these folks in our home office are really providing some of those potential paths with
the organization as a whole running and they really allow our six program sites to focus
on direct services with our participants. So, we found that to be a really effective
model for delivering the services the best way that we can. And then each program site—again
just to give you a little bit of a picture of how we work—involves three to four different
staff members enrolled. We have a program director at each site who oversees the program,
and this sometimes blends with our business liaison role who is typically responsible
for developing the trainings and finding the jobs for the women once they go through this
program. And then we have an assistant program director who also might sometimes be a business
liaison. And then, each site also has a mental health provider who provides ongoing support
to the participants. As you’ll see in the coming slides, the mental health component
is really unique and a pretty essential part of our success. And now we will go through
the Climb model itself, um, which again has evolved over the years. Really, at the heart
of how we operate—and you saw this in a few of Sabrina’s and Cassandra’s slides.
Um, at the heart of what we do is relationships. Um, I don’t know if you can see on the slide.
It’s a little tough to read. Um, but with Ray at our helm— she’s, like I said, a
psychologist—and the entire program that’s really therapeutically based from the belief
that meaningful relationships plus a really structured nurturing environment creates change.
And we think that this is a pretty good reason about why we’ve been able to be successful
over the years. And so, kind of, a summary of our statement is we really believe that
how we do what we do is just as important as what we do. And some of the essential premise
of this idea of relationships-driven direct services, and I won’t go through each one
of these. I’m sure a lot of people… Most of the people on the call know what these
mean. But what I will mention is this: open, honest, and direct communication has provided
a pretty significant foundation for how we develop these trusting relationships both
among our staff, but also with the women that we work with and, of course, with our community
collaborators. We really engage in conflict. We encourage that so that we can have healthy
and productive conversations and we have found that in working with the women in the program.
And we model that and we encourage that. It really helps to create and practice communication
skills and conflict engagement skills that are going to be pretty essential to being
successful on the job once they’re placed. Um, as I was sharing before, we have those
six program sites and each site runs a number…a certain number of programs per year, and we
work with…between *** (audio cut out – 48:56) per programs. And the reason that we landed
on that number is that, just, over the years, this therapeutic approach gave us a lot of
insight into the ideal number of women for our programs. And because we do a lot of group
work as a part of our program, that 10 to 12 is kind of the sweet spot for making it
therapeutically effective. We have several different phases of the program and our approach,
and these three that I’ll talk about here, are the…leading up to the actual program
once it’s started and the women are enrolled. So, the first phase is our training and research,
and this is a really important part of the entire process where program staff take the
time to really research and explore the job market in each community. So, they’re reaching
out to employers and industry experts and having conversations—what trainings make
sense right now given the climate, where are the jobs now, where are they going to be in
4 months—and then that ensures that we’re selecting and developing trainings where the
jobs actually exist, so that when we train the women who go through the program, they
have jobs at the end, which is a pretty essential feature for why they’re signing up in the
first place. And then, year-round, we participate in really active recruitment of participants,
and actually employer partners alike. And this is a really conscious, proactive effort
in each community. We meet regularly with agencies to increase our referrals and, again,
build relationships, build information meetings, send postcards. We have a database of candidates
and use a lot of different advertising modalities, from Facebook to print. And we have found,
again, as part of the process continues to evolve, we keep looking for new ways to reach
the women in the program. And then, lastly, we have an application process. So, it’s
really rigorous for the women to get into the program and this is basically to help
determine, “Does this woman coming to us meet the need at this time given the characteristics
of the rest of the women who are applying for this group, and is she most likely to
succeed?” So, is she in a place in her life where she can go through the rigors of the
program and successively complete them? The one part is just determining technical eligibility.
“Does she meet federal poverty guidelines, which is a requirement to come into the program?”
And then, the other side of this is real conversations, tough conversations with each team member
to really determine if the timing is right to join. We just want to set women up to be
successful; so if things aren’t in place, like childcare or transportation, we know
that commitment and childcare is going to be really tough and we know, also, that the
women can only go through the program once. So, it’s really important that we screen
carefully, and Rocks Springs… At our Rock Springs site, for example, just not too long
ago, I was down there. We had 80 women show up for the information meeting for our CNA
training that is currently running, and we had to screen. Those 80 women down to 10.
We have a lot of women in the program. But, for those who don’t get in, we maintain
relationships. We give really specific feedback about why they weren’t accepted this round.
We continue to engage with them about, “Here are the steps that you can take to be eligible
next time,” and we often have women apply for the program multiple times. And we think
that maintaining the relationships the way we do is what brings them back. During these
early phases, partnerships with the Wyoming Department of Family Services, which is our
TANF administrators, are especially essential because, not only are they great referral
partners and it’s mutual, but they also…the cash assistance that benefits childcare subsidies
become so essential for the moms to be able to actually participate in the programs, because,
typically, the training hours are so intense that they can’t… A lot of them don’t
work while they’re training. Some of them do, but again, the benefits really ensure
that they are able to participate. So, the Climb program, itself—again, just trying
to unpack what it actually looks like once the participants are in the program. So, you
get accepted into the program and then the Climb program has a number of different components
that have come together over the years to create our model. Each program runs anywhere
from 8 to 16 weeks depending on the training and what’s required. And the first component,
I just want to talk about, is the actual job training itself. We talked about the research
that goes into planning each training, but then we run trainings anywhere from CNA trainings
to CDL (Commercial Driver’s License) trainings, pipe fitting, welding, office careers… And
we have found that that diversity of job training has made our staff really skilled at developing
those useful and purposeful trainings. And then we also do work skills that are universal
to any career, including resumes, computer skills, interview practice, and that sort
of thing. The next component of the program and, like I had mentioned earlier, and probably
one of the more unique pieces is our mental health services. These are designed to help
participants address any barriers that may have gotten in the way of being successful
at work in the past, and this could be anything from a communication style that comes off
as aggressive to lack of confidence to relationships that have been really challenging or abusive.
And the therapist’s job is really to be on the lookout during the program to name
strengths of each woman, but also notice barriers as they’re coming up in the moment. And
so, women that are participating in group counseling every week, maybe individual counseling
every other week—and group therapy is really the place where the women lean on each other,
but they practice new skills. We encourage practicing direct feedback with each other,
engaging in conflict when it comes up. And again, I’ve seen the transformative power
of these interactions. The women emerge from group feeling more confident in their ability
to have tough conversations, which, again, on-the-job often prevents someone from just
walking off and leaving a job. And then, the individual therapy again, it’s just more
individualized focus. We talk about how the program is going and where they might be needing
support. The next topic, or our next component, rather, is our life skills where we have different…
We invite different presenters to come into the communities to talk about all kinds of
topics, like parenting, boundaries, healthy relationships, budgeting… And we check-in
with the moms to see what kind of topics they would like and which ones are relevant. And
the last is for those topics. It really is depending upon the group. And then, lastly,
our Job Placement Phase involves actually matching participants to job opportunities
that really fit their interests and skills. We recruit and reach out to employers in the
community to ensure that there’s continued training for the women—there are performance
evaluations—and this gives the women a chance to practice new skills on the job and to get
feedback, which is really helpful for growth. I do want to mention that, as part of both…for
the participants and the employers, we do provide financial incentives. We see bonuses
for attendance with the women and then we also offer to subsidize the pay for the women
during their placements, which is usually about 6 weeks long, and that often incentivizes
partners or employers to partner with us. But even so, we’re really careful about
the selection of our particular partners to make sure they really get the Climb model
and want to support the women at being successful. And then, the last part of our program, which
is ongoing support with our graduates—we really let our graduates lead the way with
us. We’re able to provide support for ongoing work issues or job skills, and we hold lunches
and just try to maintain connections as much as we can. But again, we let the graduates
drive that contact. Our impact: I’m not going to go into too much detail here, just
in the interest of time, but we do have these statistics available on our website and in
our progress report. But I will mention that the average monthly income, as of 2016, 24
months post-program, women were making around $2,500 a month; whereas, prior to starting
the program, 2 years prior, they were making about $1,000. So, we’re more than doubling
the income of the women that have come into the program, which is really exciting for
obviously them and their children. Lastly, we’re just going to go through lessons learned
and promising practices. The first, and like I shared earlier, this idea of therapeutic
group supportive relationships creating change has been such a huge lesson for us. It was
present at the start with Ray and how she ran her Young Parenting Program. So, it was
really, kind of, fundamental to how we worked, but as we’ve gotten clearer about our values
and what’s important to us, we know that entering into these relationships with the
women and with each other in respectful ways just opens the door to the women feeling safe
enough, talk vulnerably, and address some of the things that are difficult that, maybe,
haven’t been addressed in the past. But, I think it also creates a culture where you
can make mistakes and fail and practice new skills, and you won’t get judged and will
just get a lot of encouragement along the way. Another lesson learned is about structure,
and we found this structure is essential for effective learning. So, we know that, often
times, when someone is living in poverty, lives are…those are really chaotic circumstances
and chaos is not a very effective learning environment. So, it’s essential for us to
have consistency. We have interactions that are scheduled for the day so that we can provide
a different experience for the women, and structure also helps our staff with job sustainability.
As anyone on this call knows, the work is hard and we, as staff, need to know that we
can count on and trust our organization structure of support and training. Um, another lesson
is just about this group work. We’ve seen, time and time again, that groups being a part
of this process really help to build social capital and executive functioning skills.
Groups are… There’s a real prime practice for relationship building and conflict engagement,
and they provide that opportunity for social capital building, connection to others, their
community in a trustworthy and stable environment. And then, because our staff are so highly
trained to approach each woman in a therapeutically supportive way, this also helps practice executive
functioning skills. So, slowing down, managing emotion, solving problems, because we give
them the opportunities to practice this over and over again, and then they get feedback
from their peers and from staff while they’re doing it. Um, and then, finally, some of the
promising practices that have emerged that seem worth mentioning, conflict engagement
and making it normal. We do this a lot at Climb, much to the chagrin of a lot of the
staff. Sometimes it’s nice not to be in conflict, but really, it has allowed us to
get more and more comfortable with conflict, which is the likelihood that we will do that
better with our…with the women in the program. And there is complex… And so, the more comfortable
we are, the better capable we are of helping women manage in different ways. And then lastly,
training partnerships with TANF agencies: we’ve had the opportunity to partner with
our local caseworkers to do some training just around relationship building and rapport
building and how to motivate change, and what we have found is that those partnerships help
build relationships between our agencies. We lose all the empathy about what each of
our employees make in the future doings and how hard the work can be, and it also allows
us to start to develop a similar language that we can use with our moms, which is helpful
across the board for the women in our programs. So, that was a fast presentation and I am
all done. Thank you, again, for listening, and I’ll turn it back over to Carol.
Thank you. Okay, so now it’s time for our next audience poll question and this is the
final question. “Does your program access any special or additional funds for specifically
serving young parents outside of TANF funds?” (Pause.) Okay, so it looks like 54% of the
participants on the phone say that their program does have special or additional funds. There
is also a question and it’s… Oh, I see. I deleted it. So, there was a question from
the audience and I’m going to assume the question was for Sarah. Someone wanted to
know what type of conflicts you guy’s experience. Sure. Would you like me to answer that now?
Sure. Yes. Go ahead. Okay. I think that question means, “How
does those conflicts, sort of, show up during the program?” Um, so one of the examples
I can say is that, at training, we have 10 women who are going through the process together.
Just putting any kind of people together, inevitably, just, conflict happens. People
start to get irritated with someone’s communication style or how they’re showing up at trainings,
and so, often times, a women will come to one of the staff people to complain and vent
and, understandably, to say, “This isn’t working for me.” And so what our consistent
response is, “Thank you so much for coming and talking to us, and let’s bring this
into our group therapy session and have you confront them first and directly with your
feedback.” And so, conflict, I think… Conflict can happen as a result of those difficult
conversations, and we just really work on reframing and checking in with people about
how safe they’re feeling, but that, hopefully, is a partial answer to your question.
Great. Thanks, Sarah. Yeah.
Okay. And so, now we’ll hear from Kristi. Hi, good afternoon. My name is Kristi Bruwer.
I am a Manager at Training Resources of America where we operate a Young Parents Program.
I also serve as the coordinator of our Young Parents Demonstration Project. Today, I’m
going to give you a brief description of Training Resources of America as an organization, an
overview of our existing Young Parents Programs, discuss the development of our Young Parents
Demonstration Project. I’ll share some of the data from that project along with some
promising practices and success stories. And then, lastly, I’ll just share some quotes
that we…from some employment *** (unclear – 1:06:23.) Okay, so Training Resources of
America: we are a private nonprofit organization with over 40 years of workforce development
experience. We’re headquartered in Lawrence, Massachusetts. We also have eight training
sites statewide to help educationally and economically disadvantaged youth and adults
to find pathways to self-sufficiency by increasing their basic education levels; improving their
English comprehension skills; maybe a high school equivalency diploma; learning some
occupational, vocational, and soft skills; helping them find and maintain employment,
helping them transition to college or post-secondary ed., help them increase their wages and job
advancement prospects; and, lastly, help them become active and productive members of their
communities. We operate a variety of educational, employment, and skilled training programs,
including our Young Parents Program. Our Young Parents Program provides pregnant and parenting
out-of-school young people age 14 to 24 with a variety of services. *** (unclear – 1:07:35)
being, we help them prepare for their high school equivalency test. We help them learn…
If that English is not their first language, we help them improve their English skills.
We train them in parenting classes, life skills classes, job readiness workshops; help them
gain access to jobs or post-secondary education. We provide them with expenses, support services.
And our Young Parents Program is funded by Massachusetts Department of Transitional Assistance
and TRA has operating this program statewide since 1992. Our Young Parents Demonstration
Program or YPD for short, um… In June, we were awarded a grant through… One of four
awardees at each site received this grant with the Department of Labor to operate a
Young Parents Demonstration Program as part of a national project. Five *** (unclear – 1:08:27)
was assigned to evaluate the impact of incentive mentoring services on Young Parents Program
outcomes and success rates *** (unclear – 1:08:35.) This grant enabled our existing like program
to incorporate a new component that randomly selects participants to receive mentoring
services focusing on education, re-advancement, and personal development. This program was
all done via random assignment. Half of the participants received mentoring services and
half did not. Our YPD program: it is important to note, we did partner with another agency
in Massachusetts named LARE. We had a goal of 400 enrolled into our Young Parent Program/YPD
program over a 2-year period. TRA’s goal was to enroll 200 *** (unclear – 1:09:15)
participants and LARE’s goal was to enroll 120 participants. Out of those 400 participants,
only 200 were randomly assigned mentoring services. A lot of… All participants involved
in control and treatment groups were tracked and evaluated for outcomes. Mentoring services
were conducted by trained volunteer mentors over the course of 18 months. TRA and our
partnering agency LARE both worked very closely with the evaluations on a monthly basis to
process enrollment into YPD, along with the outcome and performance status. Our mentors
focused primarily on these three areas: education, re-advancement, and personal development.
Mentoring occurred a minimum a week for 4 hours per month for up to 18 months. Mentor/mentee
we showed specifically one-to-one; however, our mentors did oversee *** (unclear – 1:10:09.).
TRA and LARE worked very closely screening, supporting, and training all the mentors,
fully support the mentor/mentee relationships via staffing of a mentor specialist at each
flag site. Next, I’m just going to share a little bit of some data we got on YPD. This
first slide just shows effects of the YPD *** (unclear – 1:10:33) that were enrolled
in TRA and LARE. You can tell in both the control and treatment groups, a majority of
our YPD participants are female, but we do have a small population of males, as well.
The next slide shows the ethnicity of our YPD participants. Again, you’ll see control
and treatment groups are pretty much level there. We do serve primarily the TANF youth
in our YPD programs, but you can also visit images of TANF adults that we serve that were
non-TANF. The next slide shows the employment status at time of YPD enrollment for both
participants. A very small amount were enrolled in the control and treatment groups were employed
at program intake where, um… Excuse me. At program intake, a very small were employed
and you can see the majority of the participants were not employed at the time of enrollment
in YPD. The next slide shows the highest level of education at enrollment into YPD. Most
of our participants in both the control groups have *** (unclear – 1:11:49) or 11th grade,
so they dropped out of high school to then enroll into our YPD program, but we did have
some percentages that they dropped out eighth grade or higher. Next, this shows the number
of YPD participants in education or training at intake: 6 months after intake, 12 months
after intake, and 18 months after intake for our random assignments, and it shows how many
were employed. You can really get a really good idea, at intake, how many were employed
and as you see income and, at 6, 12, and 18 months, there’s a big difference of what
people in treatment groups the number of participants were employed. And it is interesting to note
that, although all data compilations *** (unclear – 1:12:39) at the time, so five participants
in our treatment group were employed with *** (unclear – 1:12:47.) And then this slide
just shows the average of each of the YPD at intake 6, 12, and 18 months after random
assignment. To date, all evaluation data and impact of mentoring services on the young
parent’s population of the YPD study are still being analyzed. So data is forthcoming
and we will fast forward to steam up the end results of the study work. The feedback that
we’ve received from both our mentors and our mentees is very positive. The young parents
particularly appreciated receiving mentor support at this point in their lives. And
then, to just share some promising practices and success stories. To the left, you’ll
see, um, we’re very fortunate to have some youth for articles in different parts of the
state, highlighting some successes with the mentor and mentee matches. And then some lessons
learned during this project: one was expensive program planning and establishing skills for
*** (unclear – 1:13:57) was very essential. We spent about 6 months in the implementation
phase before really starting the random assignment enrolling in the YPD programs, which is found
very beneficial. Mentor training and ongoing support are key *** (unclear – 1:14:15) are
very expensive mentor training at the beginning of the program, and then we also have the
mentors get together on a quarterly basis to just share their experiences of any challenges
they were having. Clear expectations must be explained for both the mentor and the mentee.
Due to the research aspect of the grant, some of the young parents in the control group
wanted a mentor, but they were not assigned one. Due to this being a research project
and a demonstration project, people weren’t able to be assigned a mentor to all participants.
So, we just let them know that, after their participation in the program, there could
be other mentoring services in the community, as they transitioned into the next steps,
that they would be able to access if they wanted to. And lastly, several mentor and
mentee relationships continue past the required assigned period, which is very nice to see.
And just a couple of quotes to share with you—one from a mentor: “I was very interested
in being a mentor, because I’ve always felt very blessed by the strong, stable upbringing
that my parents gave me and really wanted to try and help a young mother give her children
the same.” And then a quote from one of our mentees: “She’s like a friend or even
a mother with all of her suggestions. She’s helped me with housing applications and taking
care of problems.” Another quote from a mentor: “When I am with my mentee, it has
been great. I feel like I am able to make a difference.” And the last quote from a
mentee: “It helps a lot. This helped me with my math. This helped me not to be so
depressed because, when I met her, I was kind of down.” And that’s all I have for today.
If anyone has any questions or comments, I would be more than happy to try to answer
them. Thank you very much. Thank you. Now, at this time we… First,
I would like to thank our wonderful presenters and thank you for all of the information that
you’ve shared with us today. And then, we’re going to go ahead and open it up for questions
from our audience, and I think we already have a few questions here. There’s a question
for Sarah, and the question, “Do they ever… Do you guys ever partner to access to… Do
you have access… Let me see. Do they ever partner to access available professional education,
like an LTN program where you can provide all the extra important services?”
Yeah, that’s a fair question. We have looked into partnering with, like, a degree program
and what we have found, at this stage in the game, is that the degree programs often aren’t
a great fit for the women as they start this process of entering into a new professional
world. And so Climb has really focused on being a stepping stone. So, for example, with
our CNA training, a lot of the women then go off to pursue higher degrees. So, we really
do feel like we’re kind of opening the door into a career that hopefully has some ability
for growth. Great. Thank you. And now I have another question
about your recruiting process for obtaining mentors.
Okay, yes. This is Kristi. Um, what we did was… We did a variety of different things.
We did a lot of marketing in the local communities. We partnered with different youth councils
and workforce development boards to recruit mentors. We did presentations at local 2‑year
colleges and 4‑year colleges. We did a lot of presentations at different community networking
groups or other non-profits that we work closely with. A lot of times, it was word-of-mouth,
too. You know, we had one mentor come in to be trained and—you know how some people
are—he would know a couple of people that were interested. So, we did it in a lot of
different methods and, like I said, it was nice. We had about a 6-month time period of
just, really, implementation of how we were going to do things. And in all that time,
we spent working on recruitment, which was very beneficial at the time.
Great. And Kristi, would you provide your… Can you provide your contact information?
Yes, I can do that right in the chat, yes? Okay, or if you put it in the chat, I don’t
think the audience will be able to see it. Okay. Um…
Maybe… Yeah, I can share my email address if that
would be helpful. Okay.
My email address is [email protected] Thank you. And we have another question. “When
a teen parent is under TANF with their parent and their sanction, what other resources would
be available to support the teen parent throughout the month?” Someone on our panel, I think
perhaps… This is Deborah from Minnesota. I could take
a stab at that. Um, and for the teen, parents for self can be sanctioned. The teen parent’s
mother, if they’re living in the same household, could be sanctioned, as well. It really depends
on how the state handles who is seen as the head of household in that situation. But really,
the answer is not a very promising one, but when they move some or all of that income
support, there aren’t many places for them to turn and it differs so much from state
to state. They probably won’t lose their food stamp benefits, their Supplemental Nutrition
Assistance Program benefits, but their childcare assistance, if they’re getting that as part
of their TANF benefits, maybe it lifts since they aren’t cooperating. So then, it really
depends on a community, a local community safety net, and that’s a pretty fragile
safety net. Sorry, I don’t have a better answer.
Thank you. There’s another question. Someone just asked me about the slides and we will
have the…on our website at www.peerta.acf.hhs.gov. The slides, as well as the audio, the transcript
for
the webinar, will all be available. Okay, there’s another question from Kenneth. “In
working with tribal TANF programs/clients, is it more difficult due to the cultural understanding
and passage, um, rites of passage and how do the two tribes handle this delicate issue?”
Deborah. So a couple of things there. In Minnesota,
we do have two tribal TANF programs. Both run through the Ojibwa Nation, the Mille Lacs
Band and Red Lake Band, but the home visiting services may or may not be with the tribal
TANF providers, because we also have American Indian participants, including those on tribal
lands, reservations that are part of our state TANF program. So, I think the first thing
is that the questioner is right, that you can’t underestimate how important the cultural
understanding and cultural practices are if you’re going to want to form a relationship.
So, the home visiting model that’s being used in a couple of locations in Minnesota,
the Family Spirit, is an American Indian developed model and it’s being delivered by tribal
agencies. So, we’re hoping that the cultural competency is hardwired in, both in the development
of the model and then the delivery of the model. And it still comes up again, the reality
of the TANF program and its requirements, and again, we hope that what happens in the
context of a very strong relationship-based model, that the young women’s course on
persisting in attendance to high school and working towards graduation stays strong and
that it’s…that, um, what helps keep her on that course is a sense of there’s somebody
in her life is going to support her in doing that, cares about her outcomes in doing so,
and helps her understand how important it will be for the rest of her life, and that
they…where it’s a Family Spirit home visiting program, that it’s done in a cultural context
that makes that fit in her life. I hope that answers the question.
Great and we are… It looks like we’ve run out of time. We have one more question
and I think we’ll… I don’t know if there’s a quick answer to this question, but we will
have the opportunity… We’ll post questions on the website, so you won’t be left without
a response to your questions. I just wanted to thank everyone who participated and thank
the audience, as well as our panelists, and remind… I would like to remind everyone
to please leave your feedback and remember that a transcript and an audio recording of
this webinar will be available shortly on our PeerTA network website. Its peerta.acf.hhs.gov.
And we’d also like to hear from you about future webinar topics. So, please send us
your ideas by email to PeerTA. And again, that’s one word—@icf.com—and, as always,
we’re looking to broaden awareness and expand our network; so please share information.
Direct your colleagues from your local and state networks to our website. And again,
the website is peerta.acf.hhs.gov. We look forward to your participation and thanks again
for your feedback, and
everyone have a nice afternoon.

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