2022 Safe From the Start Process Evaluation

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Illinoi Criminal Justice Information Authority
ICJIA researchers conducted a process evaluation of the Safe From the Start (SFS) program, examining the program’s operation with a focus on its three core pillars of coalition building, direct services, and public awareness. Researchers analyzed data collected from clinicians and administrative staff across nine program sites via an online survey, four focus groups, and nine virtual site visits. Findings indicated that providers' key objectives for coalition building were to streamline family referrals, collaborate with partners on public awareness efforts, and educate partners on childhood exposure to violence. Sites coordinated quarterly coalition meetings and annual professional development trainings to increase collaboration among service agencies. Providers’ direct service activities involved making referrals, developing service plans, and providing therapeutic treatment. While providers used 17 different therapeutic treatment modalities across sites, all sites commonly utilized play therapy or Theraplay. Also, sites engaged in public awareness activities by offering presentations, workshops, and trainings at community events. They employed various strategies to reach underserved victims by mitigating language barriers and increasing access to services. While unique barriers and strengths were noted within each pillar, multiple sites encountered capacity, technology, and COVID-19 pandemic-related challenges that impacted all pillars. Recommendations for programmatic improvement and avenues for future research are discussed.[Author Abstract]
SAC, Statistical Analysis Center, Illinois, Public Awareness
Nguyen, S.L., Gonzalez, L.F., & Vasquez, A.L. (2023). 2022 Safe from the start process evaluation. Illinois Criminal Justice Information Authority. https://researchhub.icjia-api.cloud/uploads/2022%20SFS%20Process%20Evaluation%20Report-230622T16355531.pdf