Early Implementation of the Welfare-to-Work Grants Program: Findings From Exploratory Site Visits and Review of Program Plans. E. Summary of Implementation Challenges and Progress


The WtW grants program had an ambitious first year. Some of the challenges program administrators have encountered were identified in the exploratory site visits, and are summarized in this final section. Many programs have made progress in addressing these challenges, while some implementation concerns are still being confronted. Although some challenges still have to be overcome, it is also apparent that some creative service strategies are being developed. Both the challenges and the innovative program approaches are likely to yield important lessons for the future, concerning overall program design and structure, as well as guidance for the organization and delivery of particular services. These lessons will be clarified as the evalution continues. Meanwhile, the combination of the first grantee survey, the 22 exploratory visits, and the many informal contacts with other WtW grantees provide a basis for four main observations, concerning:

  1. the administrative issues that had to be resolved by grantees in the first year of the program,
  2. the first-year logistical issues in the relationship between TANF agencies and WtW grant programs,
  3. the overall pace and level of enrollment achieved in the first year, and
  4. the kinds of service delivery innovations that are developing.