What are the measurable outcomes?
Acres of Hope utilizes measurable outcomes to assess success in 25 areas of a family’s life. Each category within the measurable outcome matrix represents a summary of how a family may function in each area from a family that is in crisis to a thriving family. The tool is used to evaluate a family upon entry into the program and periodically throughout their stay to assess growth. Each mother at Acres of Hope establishes personal goals in each of the 25 areas and attends classes that target these goals.
Why measurable outcomes?
There are many ways to measure success such as the length of time an individual remains in housing or lives clean and sober. Such measurements do not reflect the quality of life. At Acres of Hope we believe that behaviors, such as living clean and sober or maintaining employment, are symptoms that point to deeper issues. We strive to address the core issues, which are most often faulty belief systems and values that drive destructive behaviors. Treating only the behavior without addressing the core issues lowers the chance of long-term recovery. The 25 areas represented in the measurable outcomes address the whole person beginning with the heart as well as behaviors.
What do the measurable outcomes mean to Acres of Hope families?
The 25 measurable outcomes drive the basis for all curriculum and activities at Acres of Hope. Curriculum and/or activities are assigned to each of the 25 measurable areas and an Individual Family Plan (IFP) is created to address stated goals.
How is this tool implemented?
- Families are introduced to the tool during their orientation/readiness period and asked to assess themselves and establish goals in each area using the ‘resident version’ of questions.
- Staff and mentors complete an assessment on each resident and score using the ‘staff version’ of questions.
- Staff and resident meet to compare assessments and create a joint final assessment that becomes an Individual Family Plan (IFP) that addresses each area and goal. The resident then begins her program at Acres of Hope.
- Case management provides weekly direction by obtaining information from staff and/or volunteers involved with each resident, challenges resident towards goals, re-defines goals when appropriate, and looks for changed behaviors as a result of the classes/activities intended to move the resident toward IFP goals.
- Case management relays current goals to staff for accountability and direction in confidential binder.
- Staff assists and challenges residents according to stated goals.
What do the measurable outcomes mean to Acres of Hope management?
First, the measurable outcomes serve as a case-management tool to document the progress of each resident toward accomplishing established goals. Second, the measurable outcomes serve as an assessment tool for the overall effectiveness of the program. Acres of Hope can assess this by evaluating growth patterns and statistics. For example, if residents are not moving along in the matrix as would be expected, management can investigate if the delay is related to the course content or the involvement of the resident. Once identified, steps can be taken to either make modifications to the course or to challenge the resident in her progress. The results of this tool can be provided to grant-makers and donors to articulate success.
The 25 Measurable Areas:
- Adult Education
- Children’s Education
- Community Involvement
- Contact with Child(ren)
- Family Relations
- Health Care Coverage
- Image of Self
- Legal Issues
- Life Skills
- Mental Health
- Parenting Skills
- Physical Health
- Relational Skills
- Substance Abuse
- Support Network
- Spiritual Life