WRMA Receives the DHHS, ACF Assistant Secretary’s 2009 Outstanding Contractor Award

The Assistant Secretary of the Administration of Children and Families in the US Department of Health and Human Services has awarded WRMA the 2009 Outstanding Contractor Award. This prestigious award recognizes special contributions made by contractors who have partnered with ACF to help the agency in the successful accomplishment of its strategic goals, key priorities and overall mission. WRMA has worked with the Child Care Bureau (CCB) since 2004 helping the Bureau develop, refine, and implement the Child Care Improper Payments Initiative. WRMA provides technical assistance to all 50 states, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico as well as all ten federal regional offices and the CCB.

This is the second time WRMA is receiving this award. In 2004, WRMA received the award in recognition of our support of the Children’s Bureau in the creation and implementation of the National Child Abuse and Neglect Data System (NCANDS).

WRMA participates in September 2009 meeting in London of the ISPCAN Working Group on Child Maltreatment Data

WRMA participated in the September 18, 2009 meeting of the International Society for the Prevention of Child Abuse and Neglect (ISPCAN) Working Group on Child Maltreatment Data. Delegates from the Belgium, France, Germany, Greece, Italy, the United Kingdom and the United States attended the meeting. During the event, participants described the status of data collection efforts related to child maltreatment in the various countries. WRMA, in its ongoing role as a working group member, was pleased to sponsor the language interpreters who facilitated communication.

WRMA Awarded National Child Abuse and Neglect Data System (NCANDS) Contract

WRMA has been awarded a 3-year contract by the Administration for Children and Families (ACF), Children’s Bureau for the ongoing implementation and technical support of the National Child Abuse and Neglect Data System (NCANDS). All 50 States, the District of Columbia, and the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico voluntarily submit annual data on children who have received an investigation or assessment by the local or State public child protective services (CPS) agency. Currently 50 jurisdictions provide detailed case-level data on each child who has been reported for alleged maltreatment and receives a CPS response. Additional aggregated data are also reported at the State level. The annual report on NCANDS data has been released each year since 1990; the most recently released annual report was Child Maltreatment 2007 . The report is available at http://www.acf.hhs.gov/programs/cb/pubs/cm07/index.htm . NCANDS data also are a critical source for many publications, reports, and activities of the Federal Government, researchers, and others. WRMA has had a leading role in all aspects of the project since it first began during 1988.

WRMA Awarded Contract to Assess the Feasibility of a National Child Abuse Registry

WRMA, in partnership with the American Bar Association Center on Children and the Law, has been awarded a 28 month contract by the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) to assess the feasibility of creating and maintaining a national registry of child abuse perpetrators. The assessment of feasibility is required by the Adam Walsh Child Protection and Safety Act. The project has two main components: a Prevalence Study and a Key Informant Survey. The Prevalence Study will examine how often perpetrators are identified in substantiated child maltreatment investigations in multiple states. The Key Informant Survey will address the data standards and structures of existing state registries, due process and other legal issues related to the development and use of such registries, and the level of state interest in participating in a national registry. The project will produce a final report that the government will adapt for use as a report to the Congress.

WRMA Prequalifies to Provide Subject Matter Expertise to the Washington State Auditor’s Office through June 30, 2012.

The Washington State Auditor’s Office has awarded a contract for Performance Audit Services and/or Subject Matter Expertise. Under this contract the Auditor’s Office may provide task orders to WRMA to provide subject matter knowledge in a broad range of health and human services to support various audits of governmental agencies and programs throughout the state of Washington.

Multicultural Health Textbook Released

Dr. Lois A. Ritter, a research manager at WRMA, has written a textbook titled Multicultural Health. The book is a comprehensive guide for healthcare workers working in different cultural communities. By focusing on cultural beliefs about health and illness and models for cross-cultural health and communication, this text helps students and professionals learn effective ways to implement health promotion programs and to conduct program evaluation among these cultures. For more information click here.

WRMA Analyzes 2009 “Cash for College” Database for the California Student Aid Commission

WRMA has been selected to analyze data from students attending one of the 500 financial aid workshops in California in 2009. Since 2002, the California Student Aid Commission has organized “Cash for College” workshops throughout the state. The mission of these workshops is to help low-income and first generation students apply for financial aid. In 2009, the California Student Aid Commission collected data from over 25,000 students. WRMA will analyze these data, and compare 2009 responses with those recorded each year since 2003. These findings will be used to develop strategies to target students who would benefit from financial aid and to improve future workshops.

Involving Youth in Evaluation

On June 24, 2009, Naeemah Carter, Research Associate at WRMA, co-presented Youth at the Wheel: Youth Driven Research and Analysis with two youth presenters, Hillary Groves and Antonio Wilson, at Portland State University’s Building on Family Strengths Conference. The presentation covered the differences between caregiver and youth perceptions of issues related to mental health, such as presenting problems and medication use. WRMA, and its partner ICF Macro, are the national evaluators for Phase V of the National Evaluation of the Comprehensive Community Mental Health Services for Children and Their Families Program and Youth Advisors Driving Action (YADA), the youth component of the national evaluation. YADA, facilitated by Naeemah Carter, provides guidance to the national evaluation to ensure that the research conducted is youth-accessible and youth-guided.

WRMA Awarded New Contract to Support the Social Services Block Grant (SSBG) Program

WRMA has been awarded a new three-year contract by the Administration for Children and Families (ACF), Office of Community Services (OCS), to provide technical support and data analyses for the SSBG program. SSBG provides flexible funding to assist states in providing a wide range of social services including child care, child welfare, services for persons with disabilities, home-based services, and adult protective services. Through this contract, WRMA will work with OCS to determine the effect of the SSBG program through analyses of expenditure and recipient data and the development of the SSBG Program Annual Report. In-depth analyses of individual and groups of services will also be conducted. The contract also includes continuing to work with OCS to develop and implement both long-term and annual performance measures in response to the Program Assessment Rating Tool (PART) review conducted in 2005. For more information on the SSBG program click here.

WRMA, in Partnership with the American Humane Association and the Institute of Applied Research, is Implementing the National Quality Improvement Center on Differential Response in Child Protective Services (QIC-DR)

In partnership with the American Humane Association and the Institute of Applied Research, WRMA is implementing the National Quality Improvement Center on Differential Response in Child Protective Services (QIC-DR), awarded as a cooperative agreement by The Children’s Bureau. During the initial phase, the QIC-DR will gather and assess existing differential response practice models, gaps and needs, and selected a research focus. The QIC-DR will then select research and demonstration project sites and will conduct a multi-year experimental-design evaluation.