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Planning Tools

Overview

Planning tools are things that agencies use as they plan for the implementation of father engagement and father involvement activities. They may come in very different formats and varieties, including, but not limited to: agendas, summary notes from meetings, timelines, action steps, strategic planning documents, etc.

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Planning Tools used in California's Father Engagement Efforts

Statewide Timeline

The California Department of Social Services (CDSS), the California Social Work Education Center (CalSWEC), Regional Training Academies (RTAs), counties, community partners, and other stakeholders met periodically to make plans for the duration of the father engagement project. One resultant planning document was a timeline that outlined the activities divided by each year.

View or download the timeline.

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Meeting Agenda Templates

In addition, stakeholders came together several times to discuss their plans of progress and to discuss the implementation of father engagement strategies. Several agendas are included below for your review.

1. 04/06/10 - Bay Area Academy planning meeting
2. 05/28/10 - Bay Area Academy planning meeting
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Napa County Planning Tools

Napa County has created several unique planning tools to help them implement their father engagement strategies.

1. The county facilitated an all-staff meeting where staff from various levels contributed to ideas they thought would be helpful to engage fathers. The father engagement implementation team synthesized the ideas and discussed the feasibility of the ideas.

View or download the IDEAS that staff offered as part of the county's father engagement efforts.

2. Family Support Clearance Form - This form collects information from people who have agreed to support a child in some way, options include:

a. Placement
b. Visitation
c. Supervise visitation
d. Overnight visits
e. Holidays/celebrationsf. Transportation
g. Transport to appointments
h. Participate in team meetings
i. Participate in school meetings
j. Respite

This is a great planning tool, because it allows staff to see who they can call for child caring issues.

View or download a copy of the Family Support Clearance Form (English), Family Support Clearance Form (Spanish).

3. Important Telephone Numbers Template - This document is used to store the names, addresses, and telephone numbers of people involved in the life of children. Staff can keep it handy and use it as a reference when trying to find someone who may be of assistance to a child on their caseload.

View or download a copy of the Important Telephone Numbers Template

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Merced County Planning Tools
Merced County created a planning tool that they use to strategize for the provision of fathers. The document, entitled Father Involvement Efforts, asks staff to consider:

  • Fathers' involvement in Team Decision Meetings (TDMs)
  • Efforts to reach and engage with fathers
  • Fathers' contributions to their children

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Strategies, Inc. Planning Tools
Strategies suggests that organizations ask themselves several questions as part of an organizational reflection and assessment process before implementing father engagement activities as a way to focus their efforts and direct their energies into best practice.

The questions are:

  • What strengths and opportunities are evident in the organizational self-assessment?
  • What do we know about fathers in our agency/community? Where are they? What do they do? Where do they go for recreation, socializing, employment, education, spiritual pursuits, family time?
  • What do fathers need? What does our agency/community provide? Where are the gaps?
  • What is our agency's vision for father involvement?
  • What specific outcomes grab our interest? Where do we want to focus our energy and resources?
  • What challenges do we anticipate? What obstacles do we need to overcome
  • Who can partner with us to support fathers in our community?

View or download a copy of the Discussion for Action Planning form.

Strategies, Inc. meets with upper-level management in organizations to discuss their plan of action for implementation.

During the meeting, they discuss the vision for the agency as it relates to father engagement. Goals and objectives are devised and well as things to be accomplished and the person/people assigned to accomplish the tasks. They discuss potential barriers and/or challenges to implementation as well.

View or download a copy Agency Action Plan template.