By Athena Elton, Wood’s Homes Research Department
The Wood’s Homes Research Department has been measuring program outcomes by collecting and analysing data since 2001. With a staff complement of four, the department works to expand the body of knowledge in child, youth, family and community well-being. It is committed to developing innovative methods for monitoring treatment effectiveness and agency functioning.
Recently Wood’s Homes hosted its 5th annual Research Symposium. The purpose of these symposiums is to encourage the exchange of information reaped from research into children’s mental health treatment, and to build collaboration and conversations between staff from like-minded organizations and employees within Wood’s Homes. Five different children’s mental health-focused organizations presented including Aspen, Oak Hill Boys Ranch, the University of Calgary’s SHIFT Project, Enviros and, of course, Wood’s Homes.
Dr. Deinera Exner-Cortens of the SHIFT Project, gave the keynote address on the prevention of adolescent dating violence and how to promote healthy relationship.. There were 14 presentations given at the symposium including:
- Findings from Aspen’s implementation of a modified Sustainable Livelihoods (SL) approach as a framework to address issues among vulnerable youth.
- Therapeutic Crisis Intervention (TCI), and how it is being used and integrated in the Oak Hill Boys Ranch to make positive changes in the treatment of boys in care.
- Medication management at Wood’s Homes – youth adherence, agency trends and recommendations for change.
- How Enviros monitors and evaluates client progress during adventure-based addiction treatment.
- Outcomes for walk-in single session therapy for families and individuals at Wood’s Homes Eastside Family Centre
Our Research Department will be continuing to dig into the data to learn more about who uses our services, how our services are working and what other organizations are doing in the field.
Wood’s Homes is also looking to hire a Research Chair in Children’s Mental Health in partnership with the University of Calgary’s Faculty of Social Work. The Chair will investigate and deliver useful strategies that can be tested, refined, retested and then replicated in other settings. The Research Department will continue to provide timely, evidence-based practices and information that front-line practitioners can apply in their daily work.
For more information, click here: Research Chair in Children’s Mental Health
Ask for help. Don’t be afraid to reach out to your friends, family and community – let’s work together!