Children and Families

Third Sector has engaged in 18 projects across 13 states, reallocating $5M of public funding that will support efforts to stabilize families nationwide.

These programs are reducing the number of days children spend in foster care, providing support for at-risk youth dually involved in both child welfare and juvenile justice systems, expanding prenatal home visitation for high-risk, low-income mothers, and more. 

Children and Families Insights

All Parenting and Families Projects

Project NameProject StageProject ScopeLocationStatus
Empowering Families – MassachusettsAdvisoryStateMassachusettsActive
Project Stage: Feasibility/Technical Assistance, Social Innovation Fund
Issue Area: Child Welfare, Health
Region: Midwest

Description:

The Learn-to-Earn (LTE) Initiative is a large-scale interagency workgroup that was launched to improve coordination across state agencies and ultimately support individuals and families received public assistance move towards a path to self-sufficiency. The initiative focuses on five public assistance programs - the Massachusetts Rental Voucher Program, State-Aid Public Housing, Temporary Assistance for Families with Dependent Children (TAFDC), Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), and Subsidized Childcare. While the programs serve many of the same clients, misaligned eligibility requirements and structural disincentives to work limit agencies’ abilities to serve the whole person or family. Third Sector is supporting the initiative’s efforts to leverage administrative data to define statewide education, employment, and income outcomes and improve the agencies’ abilities to match individuals and families with the right mix of supports through the development of data use license agreements.
Washington Home Visiting Services Account (HVSA) PFSFeasibilityStateWashingtonClosed
Project Stage: Feasibility/Technical Assistance, Social Innovation Fund
Issue Area: Child Welfare, Health
Region: Midwest

Description:

DEL, Thrive, and Third Sector completed a feasibility study to determine whether Pay for Success could help improve life outcomes for Washington's high-risk families through quality home visiting services funded by the Home Visiting Services Account (HVSA). Given there are more families eligible for home visiting programs than are currently served, DEL was interested in exploring strategies for expanding financial support through Pay for Success. Third Sector conducted a feasibility analysis on five home visiting programs funded by HVSA. Results of the assessment were that a performance-based approach to HVSA expansion would necessitate data improvements to enable DEL, Thrive, and HVSA service providers to better identify and serve high-risk families in Washington and improve their health and educational outcomes. This project closed in 2016.
Administrative Data Pilot: WashingtonFeasibilityStateWashingtonActive
Project Stage: Feasibility/Technical Assistance, Social Innovation Fund
Issue Area: Child Welfare, Health
Region: Midwest

Description:

Third Sector, in partnership with Stanford’s Center on Poverty and Inequality (CPI), is helping the Washington State Department of Early Learning (DEL) to improve early education and well-being outcomes for children and families served by two home visiting programs and an early support program for infants and toddlers at risk of development delays. The agency realized through a Pay for Success feasibility assessment with Third Sector in 2015 that program data is not linked with administrative datasets to allow DEL to understand certain priority outcomes, therefore the agency was interested in receiving technical assistance from Stanford to access and analyze data held externally. Third Sector will lead efforts to leverage data insights for selection of outcomes and metrics to build performance-based contracts. DEL joins Santa Cruz County’s Human Services Department and San Diego County’s Health and Human Services Agency in Third Sector and CPI's Social Innovation Fund Administrative Data Pilot cohort, which will also include a Learning Community designed to facilitate cross-site collaboration and technical/process trainings around data analysis and deployment.
Empowering Families – Broward CountyAdvisoryCountyBroward County, FLActive
Project Stage: Feasibility/Technical Assistance, Social Innovation Fund
Issue Area: Child Welfare, Health
Region: Midwest

Description:

The Children's Services Council of Broward County, FL (CSC Broward) has a long history of partnering with local funders and providers to track and incentivize priority outcomes for children and families that align to the Broward County Children’s Strategic Plan. In order to apply a racial equity lens to their work and continue to improve opportunities and results for all Broward children, CSC Broward is piloting new processes for engaging providers and program participants as co-researchers in selecting and measuring program outcomes, shaping program design, and identifying systems-level barriers to remove. CSC Broward is piloting these efforts with the Family Strengthening and Mothers Overcoming Maternal Stress (MOMS) programs, which provide child abuse and neglect prevention services. Third Sector is supporting CSC Broward’s creation of systems for ongoing provider management and frontline staff engagement to complement its existing data-driven approaches that inform funding and procurement decisions. Third Sector is also supporting the inclusion of additional “learning outcomes” (customized, provider-proposed metrics) in the 2019 reprocurement of these services.
Empowering Families – North CarolinaFeasibilityStateNorth CarolinaActive
Project Stage: Feasibility/Technical Assistance, Social Innovation Fund
Issue Area: Child Welfare, Health
Region: Midwest

Description:

In North Carolina, the Department of Health and Human Services (NCDHHS) seeks to improve outcomes for vulnerable families across the state. NCDHHS is a large agency and funds a range of services. Two priority areas the state is working to improve outcomes for are early childhood and the opioid epidemic. To identify opportunities to improve outcomes at scale, NCDHHS has decided to focus these efforts in Guilford County which has already laid the groundwork for improving early childhood outcomes. NCDHHS has an opportunity to learn more about what program models are working to improve 2Gen outcomes through an outcomes-oriented demonstration project in Guilford County. Third Sector is working with Guilford County partners to support the development of this demonstration project, which focuses on improving 2Gen outcomes for pregnant women and children affected by substance use. At the same time, Third Sector is also working closely with NCDHHS to develop an agency-wide vision for outcomes-orientation and identify ways to scale the work being done in Guilford County to improve outcomes statewide.  
Empowering Families – IowaFeasibilityStateIowaActive
Project Stage: Feasibility/Technical Assistance, Social Innovation Fund
Issue Area: Child Welfare, Health
Region: Midwest

Description:

Third Sector is working with Iowa's Department of Human Rights to move its Family Development and Self Sufficiency program towards an outcomes orientation. Work is being done to incorporate family voice into 2Gen related program changes and to rethink how different TANF systems interacte in order to better serve families.
Empowering Families – ConnecticutAdvisoryStateConnecticutActive
Project Stage: Feasibility/Technical Assistance, Social Innovation Fund
Issue Area: Child Welfare, Health
Region: Midwest

Description:

The Office of Early Childhood (OEC) administers state and federally-funded childcare for 30,000+ low-income families in the state of Connecticut. The establishment of  the OEC in 2013 united staff and funding from five unique state agencies, naturally creating silos in program delivery. Third Sector has partnered with the Early Care and Education Division of the OEC to assess opportunities to further integrate funding and embed outcomes-orientation across its program starting with Care for Kids, its statewide child care subsidy program. The OEC is working with government agencies, community organizations, and providers through the development and implementation of its three-year Child Care Development Fund Plan to lead collaborative initiatives. These efforts are designed to increase access to high quality care and improve child and family outcomes, including but not limited to improved referral pathways for housing insecure families, expansion of allowable employment and education activities for families on transitional assistance for needy families (TANF), and grants and contracts to expand infant and toddler care.
Empowering Families – ColoradoAdvisoryCityDenver, COActive
Project Stage: Feasibility/Technical Assistance, Social Innovation Fund
Issue Area: Child Welfare, Health
Region: Midwest

Description:

Colorado Department of Human Services (CDHS) administers critical resources and supports to thousands of Coloradans who struggle to afford basic living necessities. Many of these individuals also face steep barriers in obtaining the skills, training, and employment opportunities needed to achieve long-term self sufficiency and economic stability. Third Sector is partnering with CDHS to incorporate outcomes-oriented contracting principles within the Colorado Works Subsidized Training and Employment Program (CW STEP). Third Sector will work with CDHS and its partners to embed a focus on outcomes and financial incentives into the CW STEP contract and apply lessons learned across other contracts in the agency, with the goal of further enhancing the CDHS' existing culture of performance management and measurably improving long-term outcomes of parents, children, and families served.
Oregon Youth Development Pay for SuccessFeasibilityStateOregonClosed
Project Stage: Feasibility/Technical Assistance, Social Innovation Fund
Issue Area: Child Welfare, Health
Region: Midwest

Description:

Third Sector worked with Friends of the Children (FOTC) to conduct PFS feasibility to scale up its national evidence-based intervention in Oregon for youth identified at age 5 as “high risk” or already experiencing poor academic and social well-being outcomes. This project closed in 2015.
Oregon Pay for PerformanceFeasibilityStateOregonClosed
Project Stage: Feasibility/Technical Assistance, Social Innovation Fund
Issue Area: Child Welfare, Health
Region: Midwest

Description:

The Center for Evidence-Based Policy at the Oregon Health and Science University received technical assistance to advance an early childhood foster care avoidance PFS project for between two to four geographically diverse Oregon communities with high foster care entry rates. The Center had agreed to take on a lead coordinator role with Third Sector’s two other Oregon awardees. This project closed in 2016.
Bridges Maternal Child Health NetworkFeasibilityCountyOrange County, CAClosed
Project Stage: Feasibility/Technical Assistance, Social Innovation Fund
Issue Area: Child Welfare, Health
Region: Midwest

Description:

Third Sector led a feasibility assessment, in partnership with the Children and Families Commission of Orange County (Commission) and other partners, to explore the viability of using PFS to increase the financial sustainability of the Bridges Network. The Bridges Network provides screening and services related to home visiting and outcomes-based funding could provide an opportunity to sustain and improve these services that are critical to the health of infants and mothers in Orange County. This project closed in 2016.
Oregon Early ChildhoodFeasibilityCountyMarion/Multnomah County, ORClosed
Project Stage: Feasibility/Technical Assistance, Social Innovation Fund
Issue Area: Child Welfare, Health
Region: Midwest

Description:

Third Sector is worked with Friends of the Children (FOTC) to conduct PFS feasibility to scale up its national evidence-based intervention in Oregon for youth identified at age 5 as “high risk” or already experiencing poor academic and social well-being outcomes. This project closed in 2016.
Virginia Pay for SuccessFeasibilityStateVirginiaClosed
Project Stage: Feasibility/Technical Assistance, Social Innovation Fund
Issue Area: Child Welfare, Health
Region: Midwest

Description:

Third Sector worked with the United Way of the Bay Area on assessing PFS readiness of its programming, specifically in the workforce development sector. This feasibility work developed PFS value propositions for promoting financial self-sufficiency and analyzed projected impact, necessary fundraising, and the economics of various projects for stakeholders. This project closed in 2016.
Austin/Travis County Health and Human ServicesFeasibilityCountyAustin/Travis County, TXClosed
Project Stage: Feasibility/Technical Assistance, Social Innovation Fund
Issue Area: Child Welfare, Health
Region: Midwest

Description:

Third Sector Capital Partners worked with Austin/Travis County, TX, with leadership from the Austin/Travis County Health and Human Services Department, to focus on determining the feasibility of PFS for reducing teen pregnancies among Hispanic youth and improving birth outcomes among African Americans. The geography served was the City of Austin and Travis County, TX. Measurable outcomes we anticipated on achieving with this engagement included clearly defined target population(s) and analysis of available administrative data. In addition, the engagement conducted an intervention assessment and preliminary evaluability assessment to determine which issue area would have the best viability for PFS. The intervention assessment focused on the Peer-to-Peer (P2P) teen pregnancy prevention program Maternal Infant Outreach Program (MIOP). — This project closed in 2016.
Cuyahoga County Partnering for Family Success ProgramLaunched ProjectsCountyCuyahoga County, OHActive
Project Stage: Feasibility/Technical Assistance, Social Innovation Fund
Issue Area: Child Welfare, Health
Region: Midwest

Description:

Cuyahoga County launched the first family homelessness and child welfare project in the nation, known as the Partnering for Family Success Program. The Partnering for Family Success Program began implementation in early 2015. The program aims to reduce the length of stay in out-of-home foster care placement for children whose caregivers are homeless. A confluence of factors including substance abuse and mental illness make it difficult for these caregivers to secure stable housing that empowers them to successfully complete their case plan with the County’s child welfare system and build a safe home environment for their children.
First Five Los AngelesFeasibilityCountyLos Angeles County, CAClosed
Project Stage: Feasibility/Technical Assistance, Social Innovation Fund
Issue Area: Child Welfare, Health
Region: Midwest

Description:

Two of California’s largest First 5 Commissions – First 5 LA and the Children and Families Commission of Orange County – jointly explored the feasibility of using PFS contracting to support their maternal and child health home visitation programs, Welcome Baby and the Bridges Maternal Child Health Network. Third Sector conducted feasibility studies with the two Commissions with support from the James Irvine Foundation and Nonprofit Finance Fund’s California Pay for Success Initiative. — This project closed in 2015.
County of Los Angeles BlueprintFeasibilityCountyLos Angeles County, CAActive
Project Stage: Feasibility/Technical Assistance, Social Innovation Fund
Issue Area: Child Welfare, Health
Region: Midwest

Description:

With support from the James Irvine Foundation and Nonprofit Finance Fund’s California Pay for Success Initiative, Third Sector partnered with Los Angeles County to complete a county-wide “Blueprint” released in October 2014, a report recommending how the county should develop one or more PFS projects. The county plans to develop at least one PFS pilot project pending Board approval.
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