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Training, Capacity Building, and Technical Assistance

LTG Associates has more than thirty years of experience providing tailored technical assistance and capacity building to a wide variety of organizations and topics. Examples of projects include:

Strengthening What Works. LTG Associates is the National Program Office (NPO) for the Strengthening What Works (SWW) Initiative, a national program of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF). This initiative supports the evaluation of program activities that focus on prevention of intimate partner violence (IPV) in immigrant and refugee communities in the United States. Eight projects were selected in a national competition and are engaged in a collaborative process of evaluation capacity building and project evaluation. Strengthening What Works seeks to:

  • Identify promising practices in IPV prevention in immigrant and refugee populations in the United States;
  • Strengthen evaluation capacity and skills of organizations addressing IPV;
  • Provide an understanding of the processes and outcomes of the projects; and,
  • Enhance program sustainability.

As the NPO, LTG has been responsible for directing the design of the planning for the SWW initiative; developing the call for proposals; designing and participating in the proposal review process; designing and conducting evaluability assessments of each of the grant finalists; working with a National Advisory Committee; and conducting analysis and grant-making recommendations. After conducting an evaluation/skills needs assessment, LTG is helping grantees develop needed skills as well as their theory of change, program logic model, and evaluation tools. LTG designed the master evaluation framework for the Initiative and is leading the development of information about the process and findings of SWW through presentations and articles.
SERVICES DELIVERED: Design, evaluation, capacity building, technical assistance, training, policy development.

OMH Evaluation Technical Assistance Project. LTG Associates worked with hundreds of Office of Minority Health (OMH) grantees ranging from community-based organizations working on HIV/AIDS services to state agencies, to data centers, over a five-year period. LTG accomplished the following:

  • Conducted an assessment of OMH-sponsored, minority-serving CBO evaluation plans, and assisted with refining the plans to ensure that the identified project outcomes were compatible with stated objectives in reaching the desired outcomes/impacts;
  • Provided individualized evaluation technical assistance to the first cohort of OMH-funded grantees to strengthen their evaluation design, data collection, and reporting plans;
  • Conducted systematic analysis of grantee evaluation plans and capabilities for the second cohort of OMH grantees, in order to provide individualized technical assistance and assist OMH as it prepared for Office of Management and Budget reporting requirements and PART review.

LTG senior analysts provided evaluation support to OMH and direct technical assistance in evaluation planning and implementation to grantees in four programs simultaneously. Grantees designed and implemented innovative approaches to improving the health of minority populations and reducing health disparities. LTG senior analysts worked closely with OMH to tailor each step in the process to ensure that: (1) changing needs of OMH were addressed rapidly and within budget, (2) OMH was fully informed of grantee progress, challenges, and facilitators, and (3) lessons from the field were communicated to OMH in a timely and useful manner. LTG conducted direct technical assistance to grantees focused on producing data that captured the direct impact their efforts were having on reduction of health disparities for their target population. LTG's evaluation plans incorporated OMH Performance Measures and Healthy People 2010 Objectives to assist OMH in linking their funding to broader efforts to decrease health disparities.
SERVICES DELIVERED: Design, evaluation, capacity building, technical assistance, policy development.

CentroNia. LTG provided technical assistance and capacity building to CentroNia, a community-based organization serving the Columbia Heights area of Washington, DC through 0-12 education services, family services, and professional training and development. The objective was to establish an outcome evaluation framework that was research and standards-based. LTG worked with both central administration and individual departments to understand CentroNia's activities and outcomes measurement. Using this understanding as the broad framework outline, LTG then surveyed the education literature to determine current standards and best practices in outcomes measurement for CentroNia's activities, and integrated these field-based findings into a formal evaluation framework that included process and outcome measures, as well as near- and far-term goals and objectives.
SERVICES DELIVERED: Design, evaluation, capacity building, technical assistance, literature review.

First Five Fresno Evaluation & Technical Assistance. For five years, LTG Associates provided evaluation services for the Children and Families Commission of Fresno County, California. First 5 Fresno (F5F) Commission's annual "First 5" program and its grantee organizations work to improve the health, security, and school readiness for children 0-5. F5F is a county-run program that administers approximately $16,000,000 a year of California tobacco tax monies. In collaboration with F5F staff, LTG developed and implemented an overall evaluation framework that encompassed the diverse set of Commission-funded programs in Fresno County. LTG's efforts gave the Commission the ability to evaluate their funding activities at the county level, instead of program by program, for the first time since its inception. LTG accomplished this task by identifying higher-level evaluation questions that cut across groups of programs and fit the Commission's Strategic Plan, and by researching and implementing both qualitative and quantitative data collection initiatives that gave the Commission the appropriate data. This effort required designing a complex evaluation framework that had to both fit existing funding patterns and accommodate future initiatives.

As part of the design process LTG identified established instruments and measures, created new instruments, and translated and adjusted them for language and literacy issues. In addition to county-level evaluation, LTG provided F5F staff and over 80 grantees with direct evaluation technical assistance. LTG also:

  • Provided F5F staff with analysis of competing data systems;
  • Aided staff and grantees in the transition to a new data system;
  • Assisted staff with the County's annual report to the state.

Finally, LTG was responsible for producing F5F's annual evaluation report to staff, the Commission, grantees, and the public.

SERVICES DELIVERED: Design, evaluation, capacity building, technical assistance, report writing.

World Health Organization Preparing for Treatment.LTG designed and conducted an evaluation of the Collaborative Fund's Preparing for Treatment Programme. Its objective was to support and expand national and local community-driven HIV/AIDS treatment preparedness efforts to reinforce the scale-up of national ART Programmes and the achievement of the "3 by 5" target (3 million treated world-wide by the end of 2005). Under contract to the Department of HIV at the World Health Organization (WHO,) LTG developed the evaluation questions, and designed and implemented an evaluation of an AIDS Treatment Preparedness initiative involving a global infrastructure and nearly 200 grantees worldwide. LTG was responsible for: the evaluation framework; data collection instruments, including qualitative and quantitative data collection; and, data management methods. LTG also identified or developed process and outcome indicators for each area of program funding: Advocacy; Community Mobilization; Reduction of Stigma & Discrimination; Treatment Literacy; and, Direct Services. Indicators were distributed to all governing bodies and grantees. LTG designed and implemented evaluation training and capacity-building support, including the project website available in five languages. Success of the project was due to the following key components.

  • Facilitation of the development of core indicators for summarizing the progress and achievements of highly diverse grantee activities;
  • Developing and implementing the means of capturing the socially and culturally distinctive achievements of diverse grantees;
  • Developing and operating a web-based electronic communication system to link grantees with each other and with the evaluator.

The final report and PowerPoint presentation targeted a variety of audiences such as policymakers, international donors, NGOs, and the organizational grantees. The presentation was first used in a WHO organization-wide briefing, next, at the International AIDS Conference, and later by the WHO and the Collaborative Fund. The report was widely cited for its utility and sensitivity and earned LTG the national Praxis Award for excellence in translating anthropological knowledge into action.

SERVICES DELIVERED: Design, evaluation, capacity building, technical assistance, policy development, report writing.

Community Identification Training. LTG created a novel field method for developing information about new and hard-to-reach populations for the Division of STD/HIV, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Over three years, LTG Associates trained CDC professional staff and 200 individual health care providers from 30 health departments nationally, including physicians, nurses, psychologists, epidemiologists, public health advisors, and outreach workers. The method is now used across the country in STD programs for CDC, and in other countries for formative research. The CID is an effective behavioral intervention.
SERVICES DELIVERED: Innovative data collection methodology, training.

Library Engagement Assessment Process (LEAP) As digital publishing grows and the role of libraries metamorphoses, LTG has helped the California State Library move library systems through a process of reaching out to complex communities to understand their needs and resources. The California State Library identified midlife adults as important library users, yet current library services for "seniors" lacked specific programs that addressed this adult population. The Transforming Life After 50 (TLA50) initiative aimed to position libraries as catalysts, resources, meeting places, and partners in creating opportunities for midlife adults to learn, teach, build skills, re-career, and become civically engaged. LTG designed a customized assessment tool, the Library Engagement Assessment Process (LEAP,) that allowed libraries to better match Baby Boomers to their resources and programs. Eighty-eight participants from 44 California libraries attended a three day session that included a LEAP training. Twenty-four libraries were awarded grants to conduct a LEAP assessment. LTG provided technical assistance to the participating libraries in conducting their assessments. Library staff was able to determine how each library and its Boomer users could share skills and serve each other, and identified new resources and community partners. The success of the LEAP program led to inspiring new program models that were shared throughout the state and spread beyond to the IMLS Western Regional Fellowship. LEAP results yielded insights and discoveries into the changing nature of aging and how institutions may mutually benefit from greater understanding of the 50+ generation and our extended human life span.
SERVICES DELIVERED: Assessment, design, training, technical assistance, capacity building.

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