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> Measuring Success

The Collaboration Council firmly believes that decisions about services and systems for our children and families must be based on clear and measurable indicators. The data we collect and monitor are used to plan, coordinate, fund and monitor these programs and systems.

As public policy is developed and monitored, public and private agencies, community leaders and elected officials can use the data on indicators of child well-being to examine broad trends and track progress over time. Beyond that, individuals and organizations can use this information to:

  • Develop a strategic plan;
  • Establish a case statement for grant proposals; and
  • Identify areas for future advocacy. 

Demographics

Montgomery County’s demographics provide a context for understanding the children and families we serve and offer insight into their strengths and challenges. Important factors to consider:

  • Population growth and change;
  • Racial, ethnic and linguistic diversity;
  • Family composition; and
  • Levels of income and poverty within which children and families in Montgomery County live.

Key Indicators

Indicators are the measures of community-level progress toward achieving community-level outcomes. Thirty key indicators of child well-being together convey the current reality of child and family well-being in Montgomery County. By monitoring these indicators over time, the community can effectively target limited resources to focus on evolving needs.

Performance Measures

Performance measures look at how well a program or agency is working. Programs supported by the Collaboration Council use a results-based accountability framework. It focuses on ensuring the well-being of program participants and measuring whether or not the program is making an impact.

Reports

Data-driven decision making comes from our original analysis in three areas:

  • The key indicators of child well-being,
  • Systems-building initiatives and
  • Performance measures showing how programs perform

Special research reports investigate children and family topics that are relevant to policies. These reports provide information on community needs, emerging issues and trends.

A key tool in this endeavor is infoMONTGOMERY. which is a unique web-based directory of mostly free and low-cost community services for children, teens, families, adults and seniors. Its purpose is both to connect individuals to needed programs and supports, and to provide a way of identifying gaps in services.

Maps

Maps provide a visual representation of spatial data and an analysis of community resources and needs. Maps of demographic data, key indicators of well-being and available resources offer a look at what is happening at the community level.

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