Targeted Help for the Hard-to-Employ: Outcomes of Two Philadelphia Welfare-to-Work Programs. The Philadelphia Outcomes Study

09/02/2004

The WtW Philadelphia outcomes study is part of a congressionally mandated, national evaluation of the WtW grants program, conducted by Mathematica Policy Research, Inc. (MPR), the Urban Institute, and Support Services International under a contract to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS). The main evaluation includes three key components: (1) a descriptive assessment of grantees based on two surveys of all WtW grantees nationwide, (2) a process analysis based on visits to 11 in-depth study sites and a program cost analysis in most of these sites, and (3) participant outcomes analysis in most of the in-depth study sites.[5] In addition to these three components in the core evaluation, a special process and implementation study focuses on programs operated by American Indian tribes and Alaska Native villages.

The WtW Philadelphia outcomes study builds on and expands an examination of outcomes for the TWC program, which is included as an in-depth study site in the national WtW evaluation (Fraker et al. 2004). However, the examination of the TWC alone does not provide a full understanding of Philadelphias WtW strategy, since the RSCs were an important part of that strategy. To document more fully the outcomes of Philadelphias WtW efforts, MPR conducted this study to examine the employment experience of both RSC and TWC participants. Findings from the larger evaluation illustrate the employment experiences of participants in the 11 in-depth study sites. These sites offered similar kinds of services to a similar range of populations as the TWC and RSC programs. Thus, the larger evaluation findings provide a broader context in which to view these findings.

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