Oklahoma Marriage Initiative (OMI): A Process Evaluation. Extent of Workshop Implementation Within Sectors

05/23/2008

The scale of workshop delivery across the state is considerable.  An estimated 7,078 OMI workshops were conducted by the end of 2007 (Table V.2).  This includes 3,953 workshops reported by trained leaders, and an estimated 3,125 high school classes that have covered OMI material (the latter estimate is based on the number of curriculum supplies ordered and average class size).  The annual number of workshops has dramatically increased, from 18 in 2001, the OMIs first year of service delivery operations, to 571 in 2007, and the total number of workshops per year has continued to exceed 500 since 2003. 

Table V.2.
Number of Workshops by Year
  2001 2002 2003a 2004 2005 2006 2007 Total
Public Institutions
Adoption Services 0 0 0 3 5 4 9 21
High Schoolsb n/a n/a n/a n/a n/a n/a n/a 3,125
Youth Services 1 5 156 378 331 194 57 1,122
Universities 1 5 20 9 11 4 5 55
Business 0 1 2 0 2 5 14 24
Correctional Centers 0 0 14 41 23 25 24 127
TANF Agencies 0 0 0 0 50 224 284 558
Extension Services 2 89 91 65 15 6 2 270
Child Guidance 10 38 139 21 2 1 2 213
Head Start 0 0 7 1 0 2 0 10
Subtotal 14 138 429 515 434 461 388 5,525
Community Volunteers
Faith 2 31 97 92 98 69 35 424
Counseling 2 22 74 45 28 15 12 198
Community Services 0 7 48 20 8 21 24 128
Spanish Workshops 0 5 10 18 10 19 8 70
Native American 0 2 13 6 2 7 4 34
General Community 0 60 272 81 116 46 71 646
Subtotal 4 127 514 262 262 177 154 1,500
Large-Scale Community Events
All About Us or Sweethearts Weekends 0 0 1 10 10 12 20 53
Total 18 265 944 790 711 654 571 7,078
Source:  OMI Management Information System. 
a 200 of the total number of 2003 workshops that were verbally reported to interviewers during an initial calling effort to assess the needs of workshop leaders and improve technical assistance.  These workshops could have been led anytime between 2001 and 2003.
b Data on the number of workshops/classes held by trained high school teachers by year is not available. 

Sector variation in completed workshops.  More workshops were produced by institutional staff than by volunteers working largely on their own in the community.  The largest number of workshops (3,125) is estimated to have been delivered by high school teachers.  As part of its program for first-time juvenile offenders and their parents, Oklahomas Association of Youth Services (OAYS) also delivered a large number of workshops (1,122).  Two reasons may contribute to the OAYS leaders productivity: parents and children in this program have a strong incentive to attend in order to avoid adjudication, and OAYS was subsidized by the OMI for delivery of its workshops.  The next highest number of workshops produced in the public sector was TANF agencies, which embed the OMI curriculum in their mandatory orientations.  Cooperative Extension and Child Guidance Services provided many workshops, most of them between 2002 and 2004, with activity tapering off to two workshops in each sector in 2007.  Contracts for the OMI to subsidize these services were no longer in place in 2007.

In the community sector, the greatest number of workshops was provided by volunteers from the general community (646), and next by members of the faith sector (424).  The pace in the community sector peaked in 2003, but otherwise has held relatively steady across the years.

Number of participants.  As the OMI has built capacity, the number of workshop participants has also dramatically climbed, from 408 in year 2001 to 26,804 in 2007 (Table V.3)  with a total of 122,134 participants so far.[12] According to OMI guidelines, participation is reported only when the individual completes at least 70 percent of the curriculum offered, so this total number does not include participants who began workshops but did not meet the minimum participation threshold for reporting completion.[13]

Between five and 10 percent of Oklahomas households have participated in an OMI workshop.  According to data from the American Community Survey, there were about 1,385,300 households in Oklahoma in the year 2006 (U.S. Census Bureau 2006b).  If every participant attended a workshop with a spouse or partner, then the OMI would have reached around 5 percent of households; if participants always attended without a partner, and all were thus from different households, the estimate would be closer to 10 percent. Since it is unlikely that either assumption is true, the actual value is probably between 5 and 10 percent.

More than half of all OMI participants are youth.  This includes large numbers of high school students and adolescents receiving youth services in the First Time Offenders Program (FTOP).  Concern about the young age at first marriage in Oklahoma, and the associated risk for divorce, led the OMI to focus on the potentially preventive effects of working with youth.[14]

Table V.3.
Number of Participants by Year
  2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007b Total
Institutions
Adoption Services 0 0 0 172 268 297 726 1,463
High Schoolsa 0 0 5,000 5,000 15,000 15,000 15,000 55,000
Youth Services 2 39 1,518 7,343 6,751 4,251 534 20,438
Universities 20 128 187 101 144 45 125 750
Business 0 5 20 0 43 135 346 549
Correctional Centers 0 0 196 565 325 434 493 2,013
Welfare Offices 0 0 0 0 489 1,791 2,380 4,660
Extension Services 23 1,127 988 587 272 54 11 3,062
Child Guidance 279 420 1,393 216 16 4 16 2,344
Head Start 0 0 83 10 0 100 0 193
Subtotal 324 1,719, 9,385 13,994 23,308 22,111 19,631 90,472
Community Volunteers
Faith 14 802 1,419 1,215 1,714 1,468 573 7,205
Counseling 70 156 815 409 417 222 149 2,238
Community Services 0 124 574 200 58 376 456 1,788
Spanish Workshops 0 38 82 219 298 655 83 1,375
Native American 0 27 108 87 23 47 2,536 2,828
General Community 0 705 4,406 858 1,381 1,079 1,541 9,970
Subtotal 84 1,852 7,404 2,988 3,891 3,847 5,338 25,404
Large-Scale Events
All About Us or SW 0 0 600 1,130 1,289 1,404 1,835 6,258
Total 408 3,571 17,389 18,112 28,488 27,362 26,804 122,134
Source:  OMI Management Information System.
a Data for the number of students taking Connections-PREP® in the high schools is estimated, based on the number of curriculum workbooks ordered by teachers. Distribution across years 2003-2007 is unknown and therefore shown arbitrarily.
b Although 2007 reporting was not complete at time of publication, the OMI does not anticipate a significant increase in these numbers.

 Workshop intensity.  Although the standard PREP® model covers about 12 hours of material, the actual number of hours provided by OMI workshop leaders has varied by type of service-delivery provider.  A Native American adaptation, for example, includes three hours of PREP® material, and the large-scale community events typically cover about six hours, once breaks are factored in.  However, a few providers have offered more than the usual 12 hours.  At least one prison for women requires that interested inmates take the Within My Reach program in addition to the standard 12 hours of PREP®, and the curriculum adaptation used in high schools takes about 18 hours.  Thus, OMI workshops range from about three to 24 hours in length.

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