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The Parent Outreach Worker Program: Evaluation a Neighbourhood-Based Strategy to Identify, Connect and Support Families

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Title: The Parent Outreach Worker Program: Evaluation a Neighbourhood-Based Strategy to Identify, Connect and Support Families
Author: Hodgson, Blair; Potwarka, Melissa; MacLeod, Jennifer
Abstract: Some families and neighbourhoods experience challenges due to poverty, isolation and other related issues. The Parent Outreach Worker (POW) program is an early intervention and prevention strategy that reaches out to families in Guelph who may be isolated or struggling. The POW program currently supports families in the neighbourhoods of Brant, Two Rivers, and Grange Hill East. In 2016, the POW program evaluated its impact on families using participant feedback and program tracking data. Qualitative and quantitative participant feedback was gathered from current and former clients of the POW program using a short survey. Program tracking data, such as the number of clients and types of support offered, has been tracked regularly by Outreach Workers since the beginning of the program. A total of 135 current and former clients completed the survey. Families who participated in the POW program reported improved access to formal services and supports. Since meeting their Outreach Worker, 92% of participants reported accessing services that they would not have used before. Outreach Workers helped clients access food more than 1375 times, which is roughly once every day since the program began. Finally, Outreach Workers helped participants build social capital by facilitating social connections within their communities. There is compelling evidence that the POW program has a positive impact on families and neighbourhoods. Outreach Workers are highly valued parts of their communities and are considered essential resources by clients.
Description: Poster was part of 'What We Know' display, held on March 1, 2017 at the Quebec Street Mall in Downtown Guelph. At 'What We Know,' the Community Engaged Scholarship Institute brought together 50 posters featuring diverse research on Guelph and Wellington from community organizations, municipal staff, faculty and students. Topics included feral cats, farmland loss, food waste, the wellbeing of children and more - all specific to Guelph and Wellington.
Date: 2017-03-01
Rights: Attribution-ShareAlike 2.5 Canada
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Attribution-ShareAlike 2.5 Canada Except where otherwise noted, this item's license is described as Attribution-ShareAlike 2.5 Canada