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HOPE Research

The Parent Child Center of Tulsa has a strong commitment to providing excellent client services. Several factors are in place to ensure that services are effective. For example, each program uses best-practice/evidence-based models and strong attention is paid to model fidelity. In addition, the agency is accredited by the Council on Accreditation (COA), which sets very high standards for service quality, accountability, communication with stakeholders, and quality improvement processes. Another factor in place to insure quality service provision is that the agency invests significant resources in program evaluation and quality improvement processes to ensure clients receive the best services possible. The agency has engaged in formal program evaluation efforts for over ten years, but since 2010 has partnered with Dr. Chan Hellman and the OU-Tulsa Center for Applied Research for Nonprofit Organizations for program evaluation services. Each program has its own evaluation process that is designed based on services provided, level of client risk for abuse and neglect, intensity of services provided, and nature of services provided. Results are analyzed and reported to key stakeholders at least annually, and are used to guide further program improvement as needed.

Since partnering with the OU-Tulsa Center for Applied Research for Nonprofit Organizations, the psychological concept of Hope, as developed by Charles Snyder, has become a guiding principle for our program evaluation activities. This concept is a chief research interest of Dr. Hellman’s and PCCT has found that it fits nicely with our focus on prevention and building on the strengths that our service recipients bring with them when they enter services here. In this conceptualization of hope, three elements are necessary in order for a person to have high hope. The person must have a goal, see pathways to pursue to achieve those goals, and have the mental energy or motivation to travel down the pathways toward the goals despite obstacles. During 2010 PCCT did an agency-wide survey of our clients including gathering information about hope and what we found confirmed that our services make a difference in the lives of the families we serve. We are currently in the process of integrating hope into individual program evaluation activities.