Kansas MIECHV Newsletter

Maternal, Infant and Early Childhood 
Home Visiting Program


Welcome to the MIECHV monthly newsletter. We hope you will find the content informative.  
In This Issue

Key Contacts 
State MIECHV Lead:
Debbie Richardson, Ph.D.
Program Manager
Maternal & Child Health Home Visiting
Bureau of Family Health
Kansas Department of Health and Environment

MIECHV Benchmark Reporting, Performance Management & Evaluation:
Teri A. Garstka, Ph.D.
Associate Director
Center for Public Partnerships & Research
University of Kansas
Kathy Bigelow, Ph.D.
Assistant Research Professor
Juniper Gardens Children's Project
University of Kansas

MIECHV Funding Update
 Dr. David Willis, Director of the Division of Home Visiting and Early Childhood Systems, Maternal and Child Health Bureau, Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA), recently announced plans for federal fiscal year 2016 (FFY'16) MIECHV grant funds. There will be two Funding Opportunity Announcements (FOAs). The first FOA for FFY'16 Formula grant funds will be released in November 2015 with an anticipated due date 60 days later in January 2016. This will be the primary funding vehicle for all grantees, which is a change from previous Formula funds. The second FOA, to be released in March 2016, is for Competitive grant funds and is open for all grantees, regardless of current competitive grant awards. With this next round, Competitive grants will be much less and more targeted to certain priorities or innovations.
 Final details are still in development, but it appears distribution of formula funding to the states will be based on: 1) addressing the needs of eligible at-risk families, 2) strengthening capacity to serve families and support services, 3) rewarding quality performance, 4) stability and continuity.MIECHV objectives per federal legislation stay the same (evidence-based models, primary home visiting strategy, targeted at-risk communities, targeting benchmark outcomes).Additional information will be shared as it becomes available.
Home Visitor C.A.R.E. Summit
Cultural Awareness, Respect, and Engagement
 More than 50 home visitors and program supervisors attended the cultural awareness mini-summit held September 25th in Kansas City, Kansas. Catholic Charities, Bethel Neighborhood Center and the Kansas Department for Children and Families discussed the refugee population in Wyandotte County, Kansas and identified existing community resources. Home visitors from Healthy Families Wyandotte, Project Eagle Early Head Start, and Healthy Families KCSL shared personal lessons learned from serving diverse populations. Participant feedback indicated the summit was a success! Specifically: 
  • Increased my knowledge about the refugee population in my community and Kansas. 91.5% agreed or strongly agreed with this statement.
  • Learned new (or learned more about) resources to assist refugee or non-English speaking families. 89.4% agreed or strongly agreed with this statement.
  • The summit was helpful and I plan to use what I learned to better serve families. 89.4% agreed or strongly agreed with this statement.
 The C.A.R.E. Toolkit, a new resource developed for home visitors to better engage and serve diverse populations and improve practice in cross-cultural settings, was introduced at the summit. Toolkit materials were developed by KU-Center for Public Partnerships and Research (KU-CPPR) in partnership with the Kansas Department of Health and Environment's (KDHE) MIECHV and Project LAUNCH programs. The multimedia toolkit contains webcasts, interactive webpages featuring resources for specific cultures, and other resources. The C.A.R.E. Toolkit may be accessed at http://kshomevisiting.org/home-visitor-resources/       
 Building Knowledge and Skills for Cross-Cultural Home Visits
 On September 9th in Southeast Kansas and September 25th in Kansas City, Kansas, KU-CPPR provided a training workshop. The half-day workshop brought together home visitors and interpreters serving families who speak languages other than English. The training was designed to increase the quality of interpreted home visits and improve family outcomes by providing strategies to improve the provider-interpreter relationship and training on cross-cultural issues. The workshop covered best practices when utilizing an interpreter, working collaboratively to communicate with families, and considerations of cultural issues affecting service delivery. Feedback was positive, with 92% of participants agreeing or strongly agreeing the content was useful for the work they do and 96% agreeing or strongly agreeing they learned new information. Participants also indicated the training provided them with strategies to think critically about their biases when working with culturally and linguistically diverse families.
What's Happening at the State Level

 Sustainability planning is a key objective in the State Home Visiting Strategic Plan. Last month, state leaders and representatives from local MIECHV teams participated in an onsite sustainability planning workshop facilitated by the Center for Public Health Systems Science, Washington University - St. Louis. Data from a sustainability assessment survey completed by state and local MIECHV partners prior to the workshop acted as the starting point. The meeting resulted in identification of four priorities for Kansas Home Visiting Sustainability: 1) strategic sharing of evaluation data, 2) structured communication/information sharing between partners, 3) engaging new partners and strategic use of "champions" to influence decision makers. A sustainability planning group has been identified and will meet in November to plan next steps.
Did You Know?

Southeast Kansas MIECHV enrollment (Montgomery, Labette, Wilson, and Cherokee counties) improved dramatically!
  • Formula grant enrollment increased from 86.6% of caseload capacity in early May to 103% caseload capacity on June 30th, and a level of 100% was maintained through September. 
  • Development grant enrollment increased from 80.7% to 89% of caseload capacity between early May and the end of June and enrollment has continued to increase. 
  •  Combined enrollment increased from 154 families in May to 190 families in September, an increase of 36 families!  
Upcoming Activities and Meetings
for MIECHV Partners
Nov. 10
Sustainability Planning Group, 1:30-2:30pm, Conference Call.
Nov. 13
SE Kansas MIECHV Team, 10:00am-2:00pm, Labette Center for Mental Health, 1730 Belmont, Parsons.
Nov. 17
Home Visiting/Domestic Violence Collaboration, 1:00-3:00pm, KCSDV, 634 SW Harrison, Topeka.
Nov. 18
State Home Visiting Leadership Group, 1:00-4:00pm, Curtis Building/KDHE, Topeka.
Dec. 3
Wyandotte County MIECHV Team, 1:00-4:00pm, Unified Government Public Health Department, 619 Ann Ave., 3rd Floor Operations Center, Kansas City, KS.
Dec. 4
Data/Evaluation/CQI Workgroup, 9:00-11:30am, KU-CPPR, 1617 St. Andrews Dr., Lawrence.
Jan. 22
SE Kansas MIECHV Team, 10:00 am - 2:00 pm, Labette Center for Mental Health, 1730 Belmont, Parsons.

Past MIECHV Newsletters  

Past newsletters have been archived and can be accessed here
Contact Us    
If you have ideas for the newsletter, feedback, questions, comments, concerns, etc. please email kshomevisiting@gmail.com


 This project is supported by the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) under the Maternal, Infant and Early Childhood Home Visiting (MIECHV) Program Development Grant to States (Grant # D89MC25208, $5,805,587) awarded to the Kansas Department of Health and Environment (KDHE). This information or content and conclusions are those of the author and should not be construed as the official position or policy of, nor should any endorsements be inferred by KDHE, HRSA, HHS or the U.S. Government.