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Family Financial Recovery Program

Institutions
University of Minnesota
Start date
2009
End date
2011
Objective

The Family Financial Recovery (FFR) Program objectives: *Create a FFR Collaborative of Extension educators, faculty, identified family-serving agencies, and disaster response agencies. *Develop a guide for family and community response titled "Tool Kit for Family Financial Recovery." *Conduct staff training for extension and family-serving agency staff to use FFR toolkit. *Assess pilot project and disseminate through national launch of Family Financial Recovery Program. Timeline Oct.-Nov. 2009:

Complete Obj. 1 Project Milestones: *Organize core project work team. *Identify members of FFRP Collaborative and hold first meeting. *Develop first draft of guidance and protocol for developing local disaster networks for FFR. *Develop a detailed evaluation plan that outlines protocols and strategies for assessing objectives 1 to 3 of the project plan, including evaluation tools for webinar and in-person trainings, the on-line toolkit and other educational strategies included in the grant. Deliverables: Meeting minutes; draft guidance for local disaster network development. Dec. 2009-May 2010:

Complete Obj. 2. Project Milestones: *Compiled a literature review of current and on-going research related to best practices. *Assembled currently available resources on long-term disaster recovery for families. *Analyzed existing research findings to identify barriers to seeking help and strategies for overcoming these barriers. *Held webinar with Extension Educators and Family-Serving Organizations to present a research update on FFR. *Identified gaps in educational resources and programs on long-term recovery. *Produced materials to fill the gaps in various formats (Internet, print, video, audio). *Held second meeting with the FFRP Collaborative to review the tool-kit and provide advice on dissemination and training. Deliverables: Literature review of research and best practices; webinar; tool kit in various formats; usability assessment of web-based toolkit; meeting minutes. June-Aug. 2010:

Complete Obj. 3 Project Milestones: *Planned and held in-person training with Extension Educators and Family-Serving Organizations to roll out tool-kit. *Video recorded components of training to place on website and on DVDs. *Prepared Extension Educators to become certified Accredited Financial Counselors. Educators obtained the credentials. *Provided additional webinar-based training on timely topics to give a booster in person training. *Developed promotional materials and promote the national roll-out webinar. *Evaluated training activities using developed tools. Deliverables: Training agenda and notes; trained educators and other family professionals; video-based training components for multiple uses; webinars. Sep. 2010:

Complete obj. 4. Performance Milestones: *Coordinated posting of the project resources and materials, including videos and evaluation tools, on EDEN and eXtension. *Held national webinar to roll the toolkit to other state extension services. *Prepared a final evaluation report for the project to submit to funders. Deliverables: Materials posted on EDEN and eXtension; recorded webinar; evaluation report.

More information

NON-TECHNICAL SUMMARY:
The Family Financial Recovery Program (FFRP) will develop a tool kit and implement training for Extension educators and their family-serving community partners to address Family Financial Recovery during the recovery phase of the disaster life cycle. The foundation for this project is based on the FEMA cycle of disaster management that depicts the process through which emergency managers prepare for disasters, respond to them, help people and institutions recover, mitigate their effects, reduce the risk of loss, and prevent disasters from occurring. The four disaster management phases do not always, or even generally, occur in isolation or in this precise order. Often phases overlap and the length of each phase greatly depends on the severity of the disaster. Within the context of this disaster cycle framework, NDSU and UMN assessed their own disaster response and concurred that emergency management programs tend to focus on the preparedness and response phases, leaving limited resources left to address the recovery and mitigation phases. NDSU and UMN have historically partnered to address flood disasters along the Red River Valley on the border between Minnesota and North Dakota. In the spring, the Red River flooding often draws on Extension?s ?just in time? crisis response with news releases, news columns, and other written materials about flood mitigation on food safety, mold and mildew, and farm-related needs. This programming is critical but a new need emerged after the flood of 2009, which occurred in the context of a world economic crisis. As flood waters receded, exposed vulnerabilities in the recovery phase of the disaster cycle surfaced. One unmet need was for tools and information to help families make informed decisions from the range of disaster assistance available. Publications were distributed by reputable disaster response agencies, and provide an excellent starting point for families on repairing flooded homes. But they do not provide tools to help families understand how accepting or declining resources impact a family?s financial recovery. Such questions as, ?Can my family afford another loan on our house? ?Can I afford rent while my house is being repaired? or ?I already have a first mortgage, home equity loan, and $20,000 on my credit cards. Can I afford to fix my house, too? FFRP begins by gaining a better understanding of family financial crisis due to disasters. Current studies and resources will be reviewed and utilized to develop a tool kit that includes training on long-term financial recovery needs of families, lesson plans, resource materials, web resources, educational media, and other resources based on identified needs. Training will be provided to Extension and family-serving agency staff on how to use the tool kit. Extension educators in Minnesota and North Dakota will receive training to become certified financial counselors. Formative and process evaluation will include focus groups and training assessments, and the information obtained will be used to modify the materials where needed. The toolkit will be disseminated to the extension network via eXtension, EDEN, and web-based training.

APPROACH:
The FFR Program, using a participatory approach inclusive of a variety of perspectives, culture and socio-economic status, will establish a collaborative to give input and co-create the FFRP. It will include representatives from family-serving organizations/disaster-responding agencies: Lutheran Disaster Response, Red Cross, Head Start, church representatives, people impacted by disaster, immigrant organizations, and agencies. Preparation of "Tool Kit for FFR" uses these methods: literature review, assessment, and material /program development. A literature review will create a solid research base and theoretical framework for the project strategies. Data from on-going research will be analyzed. Existing educational materials and resources will be assembled into a web-based tool kit; new materials will be developed to fill gaps. Topics include: family financial decision making tools, guides on implementing local resource fairs, social marketing, radio and other media. An emphasis will be on working effectively with cultural groups and providing best practices, from a cultural perspective, for delivery at both the family and the community levels. The following training methods will be used: in-person training, webinar training, and training for Accredited Financial Counselor (AFC) certification. In-person training will be provided to Extension staff and family-serving organizations on: phases of disaster recovery; Extension's role in long-term Family Financial Recovery; understanding disaster assistance agencies and disaster assistance programs; best practices in helping families make their own informed decisions within the context of a disaster; resources available for families experiencing disasters; development of local community groups to address family financial recovery; impact of different kinds of disaster on family financial resilience; working effectively with different cultural groups; and using the web-based toolkit. The capacity of Family Resource Management educators will be enhance by Accredited Financial Counselor (AFC) certification, a self-study course offered by Association for Financial Counseling Planning Education (AFCPE). Training via webinar for the Extension staff and their family-serving agencies partners will highlight the ND and MN cooperative work in disaster response, provide baseline training on disaster response with the family, and the development of community teams to meet families needs. The assessment includes both quantitative and qualitative methods, as well as web-based data gathering to determine if objectives were met. The usability of the web-based toolkit will be assessed. The tool kit and training materials will be modified based on the evaluation results. Dissemination activities will include: national posting of the "Tool Kit for Family Financial Recovery" on eXtension and EDEN. After posting, a national webinar will be conducted to share lessons learned, best practices and use of the materials developed. These web-based training will be archived to provide on-going training as new staff and new states find the need for the tool kit and training to use the tool kit.

PROGRESS: 2009/09 TO 2011/08
OUTPUTS: 1. Obj 1: Create a Family Financial Recovery Collaborative of Extension educators, faculty, identified family-serving agencies, and disaster response agencies to better understand the family financial long-term recovery process and resources to support financial recovery. A Collaborative was created. Agencies included: Red Cross, businesses impacted by a recent flood in MN, Agricultural Services, United Way, VOAD, Extension educators, Extension administrators, Home Land Security Emergency Management, local disaster response coordinators, and Lutheran Disaster Response. 2. Obj 2: Develop a resource guide. "Recovery After Disaster: The Family Financial Toolkit" was developed. Units include: How do I use this toolkit; What are the key strategies for financial recovery; Where do I Start; Where am I Financially; Where Will I Live as a homeowner; Where will I live if I'm a renter; The New Normal; Resources for Families. RAPID UTILIZATION OF TOOLKIT: Extension colleagues have self reported that the Toolkit has been used by disaster survivors in Minnesota, North Dakota, South Dakota, Iowa, Mississippi, Alabama, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, Montana, Missouri, Kansas and Virginia. WEBSITE HITS: From 4/15/2011 to 09/15/11 (5 months) web visits to the toolkit on numbered 110,049. providing direct links to the toolkit from their websites. 3. Conduct staff development to implement using the tool kit. Training topics included: The complexity of agency roles in disaster response; The dynamics of family financial recovery from a natural disaster; human response to loss and anger in financially stressful times & how it affects decision-making; emotional recovery and resilience; introduction to financial recovery tools including: eXtension, EDEN, and disaster recovery resource fair, and the "Family Financial Toolkit"; Case Studies using the toolkit; discussion of roles and when to refer to mental health or financial specialists; & planning for implementation. Over 550 individuals were trained from the 10 educational offerings offered. 4. Assess pilot project and disseminate through national launch of Family Financial Recovery Program. Assessment provided in outcomes section. National Trainings occurred both in-person and via webinar: webinars were conducted for Cooperative Extension professionals (102 participants from 36 states) and an additional webinar by request for National Voluntary Agencies Active in Disaster (66 participants representing 27 voluntary and governmental agencies). Additionally, trainings about the toolkit and how to use it were conducted at the following state and national conferences: Financial Recovery from a National Disaster Conference: 9/8/2010, Fargo, ND; National Extension Disaster Education Annual Mtg: 11/2-11/5, 2010 Lexington, KY; Minnesota Voluntary Agencies Active in Disaster Annual Conference: 2/26/11, Minneapolis; NDSU Extension Spring Conference, 4/15/2011; Minnesota Financial Fitness Conference: 4/21/11, Alexandria; National Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster: 5/24-26, 2011 Kansas City, MO; EDEN National Conference 10/11-14,2011 Portland Oregon, AFCPE Annual Conference: 11/16-18, Jacksonville, FL. PARTICIPANTS: Individuals (1) principal investigator Patricia Olson, PH.D. University of Minnesota Extension. Project director: Phyllis Onstad,University of Minnesota Regional Extension Educator Family Resource Management (2) each person who has worked at least one person month per year: Sara Croymans, University of Minnesota Regional Extension Educator Family Resource Management; Lori Scharmer, NDSU Extension Agent, Family Economics. Partner Organizations: FEMA, SBA, Red Cross, Lutheran Social Services, EDEN, eXtension, VOAD. Collaborators and contacts are others within the recipient's organization: Susan Shockey, NIFA Program Leader. Trainings: Financial Recovery from a National Disaster Conference: 9/8/2010, Fargo, ND; National Extension Disaster Education Annual Mtg: 11/2-11/5, 2010 Lexington, KY; Minnesota Voluntary Agencies Active in Disaster Annual Conference: 2/26/11, Minneapolis; NDSU Extension Spring Conference, 4/15/2011; Minnesota Financial Fitness Conference: 4/21/11, Alexandria; National Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster: 5/24-26, 2011 Kansas City, MO; EDEN National Conference 10/11-14,2011 Portland Oregon, AFCPE Annual Conference: 11/16-18, Jacksonville, FL. Telephone townhall training for those impacted by flood in Red River Valley. Virtual Resource Fair Webinar for agency staff during flood. TARGET AUDIENCES: Target audience was extension family and consumer science educators and partner agency staff to understand the complexity disaster response & recovery, of the financial impact of disasters to individuals and households, and how to utilize the "Recovery After Disaster: The Family Financial Toolkit" to meet survivors of disasters educational needs. PROJECT MODIFICATIONS: We added smartphone "app" application as an additional outreach educational tool for through experience during the duration of the grant it became more prevalent that smartphone apps were being utilized more and more in the two years we had the grant and so developing one with the resources from this grant made sense. We needed to utilize our resources in a responsive way during the duration of the grant. It took a bit longer to implement than we anticipated. We conducted more outreach activities than anticipated due to the increasing need - due to the increasing number of disaster in the context of a national recession. Disaster and recession together make for a "double disaster" for unemployed or under-employed. Additional information: Potential partnership between NIFA & FEMA. Susan Shockey, NIFA Program Leader, is in conversations with FEMA for potential partnership for family and consumer science extension educators to conduct education nationally (in each state) utilizing "Recovery After Disaster: the Family Financial Toolkit." This potential collaboration is at beginning stages - but it offers an insight of how the Smith Lever Special Needs funding can provide the seed money for great educational outreach. 2011 AFCPE Outstanding Consumer Financial Information Award to "Recovery After Disaster: the Family Financial Toolkit" a joint project of the University of Minnesota Extension and North Dakota State university Extension, November 18, 2011. Onstad, P., Croymans, S., and Scharmer, L. (2011). Putting the Pieces of the Puzzle Together: Financial Recovery After Disaster., Juried Conference Presentation. AFCPE Conference, Jacksonville, FL Onstad, P.A., Danes, S. M., Hardman, A. M., Olson, P. D., Marczak, M.S., Heins, R. K., & Croymans, S. (submitted, review and resubmit status to Community Development). The Road To Recovery from a Natural disaster; Voices from the Community.

PROGRESS: 2009/09/01 TO 2010/08/31
OUTPUTS: 1.A Family Financial Recovery Collaborative was created to better understand the family financial long-term recovery process after a disaster and resources to support financial recovery after a disaster. On March 24, 2010, the collaborative met and provided input to the content that should be included in the Tool Kit. Agencies represented included: Red Cross, businesses that had been impacted by a recent flood in Minnesota, Agricultural Services, United Way, VOAD, Extension educators, Extension administrators, Home Land Security Emergency Management, local disaster response coordinators, and Lutheran Disaster Response. 2.A draft resource guide for family and community response titled "Recovery After Disaster: The Family financial Toolkit" was developed. Units of this draft document include: Introduction, Where do I Start, Where am I Financially, Where Will I Live, and Tools for Financial Recovery. The tool kit was in draft form for the Extension Educator training conducted in early September with the intent to receive feedback from extension educators to improve the toolkit prior to final copy. This toolkit will be the main dissemination output of this grant. 3.Planning was conducted for a September 8, 2010, staff development training for extension staff in Minnesota and North Dakota. Topics planned for the training include: Understanding the complexity of agency roles in disaster response; understanding the dynamics of family financial recovery from a natural disaster; human response to loss and anger in financially stressful times and how it affects decision-making; understanding emotional recovery and resilience;introduction to financial recovery tool including: eXtension, Eden, and disaster recovery resource fair, and "Recovery after Disaster: the Family Financial Toolkit"; Case Studies using the toolkit; discussion of roles and when to refer to mental health or financial specialists; and ND & MN breakout discussion for implementation. Final report will provide evaluation from training. 4.Planning has been conducted to conduct evaluation of "Recovery After Disaster: the Family Financial Toolkit." Planning is also being conducted for training conducting national web education on the use of the "Recovery After Disaster: the Family Financial Toolkit." Results will be reported on in the final report. PARTICIPANTS: Regional extension educators who work in the area of family resource management provided content expertise for toolkit development. A Family Financial Recovery Collaborative was developed to provide input on toolkit development. Agencies and organizations who participated included: Red Cross, United Way, VOAD, Homeland Security Emergency Management, Agricultural Services, and local business impacted by a recent flood. In particular case workers from Lutheran Disaster Response provided additional expertise in toolkit development. In our no-cost extension year, MN and ND extension educators will be trained to utilize the "Recovery After Disaster: The Family Financial Toolkit." TARGET AUDIENCES: Target audiences include: extension educators in MN and ND. After training in MN and ND and testing the toolkit, a national webinar on use of the toolkit will be conducted via eXtension and or EDEN, therefore reaching a national audience of extension educators. Final report will share evaluation results of these efforts. PROJECT MODIFICATIONS: We are still on target with our original plan. After we have piloted the toolkit, the format and content may be modified.

Funding Source
Nat'l. Inst. of Food and Agriculture
Project source
View this project
Project number
MIN-FD-E02
Accession number
219721
Categories
Bacterial Pathogens
Risk Assessment, Management, and Communication
Education and Training