Colorado Governor’s Office of State Planning and Budgeting Announces Call for Innovation Finalists

In January 2017, the Colorado Governor’s Office of State Planning and Budgeting (OSPB) released a Call for Innovation (CFI), designed to accompany its ongoing Pay for Success feasibility study assessing the viability of linking government funding to rigorously measured results. The OSPB received 61 proposals through the 2017 Call for Innovation, all aimed at improving measurable outcomes for young Coloradans involved or at high risk of involvement in the child welfare or juvenile justice systems. Over the past several months, OSPB, in close coordination with the Colorado Department of Human Services (CDHS) and other state agencies and subject-matter experts, has led a multi-step review of these proposals. Through the process a short list of three of the strongest and most feasible projects for prioritized funding and implementation, summarized below.

OSPB and CDHS thanks everyone who submitted a proposal. Many, many great ideas were received through this process. We look forward to working with the local partners and stakeholders who proposed these projects, while continuing to explore financing models linking funding to measurable outcomes as a promising avenue for launching these Colorado initiatives. 

In brief, the three projects on the short list are as follows:

  • Denver Collaborative Partnership (DCP): The City and County of Denver application, jointly submitted by 9 local government and provider partners, is a bold proposal to help catalyze systemic change by emphasizing targeted prevention across the child welfare and juvenile justice systems. It aims to provide alternatives to detention for youth, short-term respite care for caregivers, and a rapid response team to reach out and connect youth and their families with effective services when they first become involved in the system. OSPB is working to connect DCP with other CFI applicants, namely Colorado Youth for a ChangeChildren’s Hospital, and Fostering Healthy Futures, for potential collaboration. These potential collaborators are discussed further in the longer attachment.
  • Jefferson County Public Schools and Jefferson Child Youth Leadership Commission (CYLC): Jefferson County Schools, Jefferson Human Services and the CYLC jointly submitted an innovative plan to improve educational outcomes for foster youth. The proposal targets low on-time high school graduation rates for these youth by funding specialists to better serve their unique needs, putting in place a system for tracking youth across placements, and providing additional “social capital” supports. The proposal builds on a small pilot that has served 30 Jefferson youth since 2015, and shown promising initial results. As part of this proposal, Jefferson County has partnered with the University of Northern Colorado topreliminarily design a randomized trial to scale and rigorously test this approach. If we can show its efficacy, we hope this intervention could expand to help foster youth in other Colorado communities.
  • Southern Ute Community Action Programs, Inc. (SUCAP) and the Center for Effective Interventions Expanded Rural MST Pilot across Multiple Counties. Southern Ute Community Action Programs, Inc. (SUCAP) proposed a substance abuse adaptation of its Multisystemic Therapy (MST) intervention in Archuleta and La Plata counties, where it serves families on and off the Southern Ute Reservation. OSPB and CDHS want to build substantially on this proposal, and on a separate proposal from the University of Denver’s Center for Effective Interventions (CEI), to scale SUCAP’s adaptation of MST across multiple rural Colorado counties facing a recent spike in substance abuse. Through this expansion, we hope to serve enough families in enough communities to, for the first time, rigorously evaluate the effectiveness of MST and MST-Substance Abuse in a less urban environment. 

Download a summary and further details including several additional proposals OSPB and CDHS see either as projects that could move toward implementation in the next budgetary cycle after they are further refined, or as additional opportunities for collaboration outside the official CFI process. 



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