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January 2013, Issue # 2 Home: Visit Website Phone: 1 (530) 938-3867
Welcome to Matrix Outcomes Model Newsletter
A project supporting family strengthening organizations.
The Family Development Matrix project is funded by the California Department of Social Services, Office of Child Abuse Prevention.

The FDM has brought case management and outcomes evaluation into county-based service networks and tribal communities in California. The FDM is an assessment tool that tracks family outcomes in an agency supported network of services. Family support workers assist families in setting goals, in recording agency interventions and supports as well as tracking worker and family participation activities. At-risk families participate in the assessment of their current situation and their strengths, which are then used to develop an empowerment plan to address issues of concern.

The overall project goals are to support, broaden, and extend the existing public/private partnerships in the FDM collaboratives to include family strengthening agencies, county welfare representatives, tribal communities, and local agency partners emphasizing the use of a prevention and early intervention planning process to prevent child abuse and neglect.

In partnership with local child welfare agencies the FDM uses outcome indicators and data analysis for reports on referrals from child welfare differential response cases. The FDM is of particular use to county child welfare agencies gathering data to use as part of the annual report to OCAP on the Promoting Safe and Stable Families (PSSF), Community Based Child Abuse Prevention (CBCAP), and Child Abuse Prevention, Intervention and Treatment (CAPIT) programs.

The counties where family support agencies are using the FDM include Alpine, Butte, Del Norte, Contra Costa, Fresno, Humboldt, Lake, Los Angeles, Madera, Mendocino, Orange, San Francisco, San Joaquin, Santa Barbara, Santa Clara, San Luis Obispo, Sierra, Siskiyou, Stanislaus, Tehama, Tulare, Ventura and Yolo Counties.

Additionally, the project utilizes the Pathway to the Prevention of Child Abuse and Neglect researched practices from Harvard University and the Family Strengthening Protective Factors to assist agencies in developing intervention strategies that are integrated with the FDM case management system. The Matrix Outcomes Model with its partner, Strategies, conducts the training and technical assistance for community collaborative agencies.

One of the goals of the current phase of the FDM is focused on strengthening the validity of the model by using a panel of experts to provide input regarding the correlation of key child abuse and neglect prevention measures, to better align the tool with the federal outcome measures. For further information, the website may be found at: www.matrixoutcomesmodel.com. If you have questions, please contact Jerry Endres, Project Director, at (530) 938-3867, or by email jendres@csumb.edu..

Information You Can Use
First5 Santa Barbara County Family Outcomes Report in Partnership with Santa Barbara County Department of Social Services

Family Strengthening agency partners monitored the growth of case managed families across several important family functioning domains using the Family Development Matrix (FDM). Family workers interviewed families and on a 4-point scale from “In Crisis” to “At Risk” to “Stable” to “Safe/Self-Sufficient.” The FDM is more than an evaluation tool; it is a case management system that provides evidence informed interventions based on family needs

Results are displayed for the families who completed two FDM assessments—at intake and a first follow-up. In the second section results are shown for families who had three assessments. In the third section, we group the individual indicators into the four main categories they represent: Access to Services, Parenting, Basic Needs, and Emotional Health.

In this report, we indicate if a result was “statistically significant” or not. If a difference over time is statistically significant, that means it is unlikely to be due to chance, and more likely due to the services or interventions received. If it is not statistically significant, then it means that families are functioning about the same as they did at intake.

Please read further to see these outstanding results. For additional information contact: Teressa Rodriquez-Johnes, Program Officer, First5 Santa Barbara 805-739-8741 or trjohnes@countyofsb.org.

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Families are Strong and Connected
For the Pathway Goal 2: Families are Strong and Connected, agencies will take actions to support families to strengthen parenting capacity, connect parents to social networks and services attuned to child development and connected to specialty care, and direct parents to supports and services that help parents meet basic needs and decrease stress.

Family-strengthening services, such as home visiting and parent education, provide emotional support and promote the skills necessary to effectively nurture and manage children’s behavior. Effective services combine formal facilitation and guidance by professionals with parent peer connections and on-going support. Service providers assist families to gain the ability to cope and bounce back from all types of challenges. When parents are resilient, they are able to respond to stressful situations in productive ways; they also feel supported and are able to solve problems.

An involved parent feels responsible for and behaves responsibly toward his child. He/She is emotionally engaged, physically accessible and involved in childcare. He/She provides material supports to sustain the child’s needs and influences child rearing decisions.

Family support services connect parents with each other and with needed services and supports. Using a strengths-based approach, service providers help families identify assets and interests and set goals for improvement. In the context of this relationship, families can safely seek help with support groups and professional attention or treatment. Through their participation families also enhance strengths and increase confidence in their own ability to achieve goals, solve problems, and meet needs.

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An Assessment Your Agency Can Do

Here is a quick assessment your agency can do. You will be checking YES or NO for parental resilience, strong social connections, knowledge of child development and demonstrated skill in parenting, basic supports and services used by families as needed and family environment questions.


Click on the read more button below to view the YES or NO check list for "Families are Strong and Connected."

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American Humane Association Differential Response
The FDM Pathway project was highlighted at the American Humane Association's 7th annual Differential Response Conference in a three-hour presentation. Coordinators from Orange, San Francisco and Santa Barbara presented their evaluation data, discussed public/private partnerships between child welfare and family resource centers, and the important role the FDM has in demonstrating family outcomes. FDM staff presented data on the role of family engagement, Pathway interventions and the testing of a hypothesis for the theoretical premise of differential response. Participants at the seminar were engaged in discussions and commented on the magnitude of the data, the partnerships and the role for the FDM in early intervention at family and community levels.

The powerpoint presentations are available below:
FDM/Pathway Project
FaCT Orange County
First 5 San Francisco
First 5 Santa Barbara

> Questions? Comments? Suggestion?
Contact Jerry Endres with the information provided below.
logo P.O. Box 727, Weed, CA 96097
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