Evaluation of Family Preservation and Reunification Programs: Interim Report. 3.1 Introduction


In Kentucky the Family Preservation Program (FPP) is a resource within the state's Department of Community Based Services (DCBS), a division of the Kentucky Cabinet for Families and Children.1 The 120 Kentucky counties are grouped into 16 regions for purposes of FPP administration. There is a family services specialist in Frankfort who has responsibility for statewide coordination of family preservation services including program oversight of contracts, providing training and meeting program reporting requirements. Direct services are delivered by private providers under contract to the state.

Kentucky counties participating in the evaluation originally included Jefferson County (Louisville) and Fayette County (Lexington). Fayette County only participated in the data collection effort for eight months and referred 32 of the 349 net study cases. Therefore, this chapter highlights service delivery, family preservation services, and the implementation of the evaluation in Jefferson County. Study enrollment began in May 1996 and concluded in February 1998.

The sources of material for this chapter are reports and documents produced by the state and interviews with personnel at the DCBS and FPP programs. This information is presented to help understand the context in which services were provided, and to identify any changes that occurred during the implementation of the evaluation. The observations only reflect the perceptions of the individuals we interviewed.

This chapter begins with an overview of the characteristics of Kentucky's children and families. Details of the Kentucky family preservation program, service delivery in Jefferson County, implementation of the evaluation, and other organizational initiatives are then provided.

(1) At study inception the Department was known as the Department of Social Services (DSS).