National Evaluation of the Welfare-to-Work Grants Program: Final Report. The Study Sites

09/01/2004

Study sites in this evaluation are local grantees whose initiatives were funded fully or mainly by WtW grants. The sites were either WtW competitive grantees funded directly by DOL (and in one case subgrantees of a competitive grantee) or local WIBs that were subgrantees funded through a states formula grant. For simplicity, both grantees and subgrantees are referred to as grantees, as both had to adhere to the same administrative requirements. Most local grantees contracted with local service providers  sometimes many of them  for actual service delivery.

The evaluation included 13 sites in the implementation analysis, but only 11 in the outcomes analysis (Exhibit II.1). The 13 sites represented 11 different grantees, since the local programs in three sites  Baltimore County, Maryland; St. Lucie County, Florida; and Long Beach, California  were operated by subgrantees of a single competitive grantee, Johns Hopkins University (JHU). We did not include Southeastern Indiana and Long Beach in the outcomes analysis because their WtW operations were too small-scale to merit the intensive effort of tracking a group of enrollees for follow-up surveys.

EXHIBIT II.1
STUDY SITES FOR THE WELFARE-TO-WORK EVALUATION
Study Site Grantee Type of Organization Enrollmenta Fundingb (millions) Distinctive Features of Program Design
Baltimore Co., MD* Johns Hopkins University, Institute for Policy Studies, Career Transcript System Nonprofit Educ. Inst. 240 $5.2
C
Workplace liaisons worked with employed individuals and their employers to promote retention and helped participants move up a career ladder.
Boston, MA* Office of Jobs and Community Services, Boston Econ. Dev. and Industrial Corp. Public agency

WIB

900 $11.3
F
Partnership programs: employers selected participants and collaborated with nonprofit partners on employability and skill training.
Chicago, IL* Mayors Office of Workforce Development (MOWD) Public agency

WIB

8,900 $60
F,C
MOWD contracted with 24 agencies for case management, training, and support services.
Ft. Worth, TX* Tarrant County Workforce Development Board (a.k.a. Work Advantage) Nonprofit

WIB

350 $7.2
F,C
Contracted with 12 CBOs for rapid work attachment services.
Long Beach, CA Johns Hopkins University, Institute for Policy Studies, Career Transcript System Nonprofit Educ. Inst. NA $5.2
C
Workplace liaisons worked with employed individuals and their employers to promote retention and help participants move up a career ladder.
Milwaukee, WI* WI Dept. of Corrections, Div. Of Comm. Corrections, Region 3 (Milwaukee Co.) State agency 850 $2
C, D
The NOW program served male noncustodial parents on probation/parole. TANF contractors provided employability/job retention services.
Nashville, TN* Nashville Career Advancement Center (NCAC) Public agency

WIB

600 $4.2 C Pathways entails monthly peer meetings to plan steps to employment, and intensive case management and problem-solving support.
Philadelphia, PA* Transitional Work Corporation (TWC) Nonprofit

corporation

7,500 $22.4  F, C, D Phil@Work provided a two-week job readiness class, six months in subsidized public/nonprofit jobs, then placement in unsubsidized jobs.
Phnix, AZ* City of Phoenix Human Services Dept., Employment and Training Division Public agency

WIB

750 $5.95
F, C
Three weeks of pre-employment preparation, followed by job placement and retention support from career specialists.
Southeastern Indiana River Valley Resources, Inc. Nonprofit WIB NA $7.0
F, C
Intensive case management, job placement, and subsidized employment for less job-ready participants.
St. Lucie Co., FL* Johns Hopkins University, Institute for Policy Studies, Career Transcript System Nonprofit Educ. Inst. 230 $5.2
C
Workplace liaisons worked with employed individuals and their employers to promote retention and help participants move up a career ladder.
West Virginia (29 counties)* Human Resources Development Foundation (HRDF) Nonprofit

foundation

650 $4.9
C
Four-week job readiness workshop, followed by graduated-stress supported work experience over six-month period, with skills training where possible.
Yakima, WA* Tri-Valley Workforce Development Council Nonprofit WIB 800 $6.4
F
Individualized case management, job search assistance, job placement, subsidized work placement, and supportive services.
a Approximate cumulative enrollment through mid-2003. Unknown for two sites included only in process analysis (Southeastern Indiana and Long Beach, California).
b Total value of WtW grants (in Philadelphia includes private foundation funding). Codes: F = formula; C = competitive; D = discretionary.
c Combined funding for seven JHU sites.
* Site was included in the outcomes analysis.

Although the estimation of WtW program impacts based on an experimental design ultimately proved infeasible in this evaluation, suitability for impact analysis was a major factor in the selection of study sites.(13) Other factors were also used to ensure substantial variety among the study sites with respect to the type of grantee, target population, degree of innovation, geographic region, and urbanicity. These last factors led to inclusion of the two sites whose scales of operation made them unsuitable for the impact and outcomes analyses but that were of interest for the implementation analysis.

The sites reflected the flexibility given to WtW grantees under the BBA in terms of program structure, targeting, and service activities. The remainder of this section highlights distinguishing characteristics of the WtW initiatives and programs sponsored by grantees included in the evaluation.(14)

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