Prevent Child Abuse North Carolina (PCANC) remained anchored in prevention this year by continuing to ensure that all parents have the supports they need to effectively navigate the ups and downs of parenting. Across North Carolina, PCANC supports agencies and trained professionals who offer parenting support programs that teach strategies for handling challenges, understanding developmental milestones, and provide opportunities for parents to connect with one another for support.
Effective implementation is crucial to ensuring that parent support programs achieve intended results and has critical social, economic, and public health implications for our state. Research shows that programs are most effective when providers receive regular, on-going support. Over the past year, our Prevention Programs Team supported 53 agencies (277 professionals in 42 counties) across North Carolina that implement Circle of Parents, The Incredible Years, and/or the Strengthening Families Program, and supported 10 Local Implementing Agencies (LIAs) for Triple P.
Watch this video to see Prevention Programs Senior Specialist Monica Hicks provide implementation support via Zoom to one of our partner agencies.
Even in the midst of the COVID-19 crisis, our implementation support services were described as high quality, practical and a good fit for providers’ needs according to a bi-annual survey of our partners. These services included:
- helping agencies reach more families
- helping practitioners make program material relevant and aligned with the needs of their communities
- and increasing practitioners’ confidence and competence in delivering programs
Our Prevention Programs Specialists consistently received positive feedback on the meaningful relationships they developed with agency staff, creating a safe space to work through challenges and identify solutions together. Our partners shared that they felt heard, validated, understood, and encouraged during coaching calls and visits.
In some instances, Prevention Programs Specialists provided more concrete support either through resources, ideas, or by connecting agencies through small group discussions to share ideas with one another.
With coaching from our Prevention Programs Specialists, our partners gained confidence and skills, and in turn, saw positive results for their programs and the families they support. Coaching sessions were a sounding board to brainstorm challenges, identify solutions, and set goals in a truly collaborative process. Some respondents noted that their Prevention Programs Specialist shared with them in their program successes.
I especially appreciate [my specialist’s] ability to balance best practices with practical solutions based on our particular circumstances. That is a real gift, we are very lucky to work with her.
My specialist is a fabulous listener and coach. He encourages me to answer my own questions and always highlights my strengths… It feels collaborative and he genuinely seems interested in me and the parents we serve.
I’ve been given concrete tools I have later used during my practice. For example, role playing conversations to practice things I can say to be effective (with recruitment).
Regular monthly support helps me to keep goals in mind, and then I can discuss with my prevention specialist any barriers to meeting the goals when we talk. She shares with me in the program successes.