Panel Paper: Local Factors That Lead to Impact: Findings from the Baltimore City Health Department’s Implementation of the TPP Program

Saturday, November 10, 2018
Johnson - Mezz Level (Marriott Wardman Park)

*Names in bold indicate Presenter

Catherine Watson, Baltimore City Health Department and Meredith Kelsey, Abt Associates, Inc.

The Teen Pregnancy Prevention Program (TPP) in the Office of Adolescent Health (OAH) began in 2010 with a congressional mandate to fund medically accurate and age-appropriate programs to reduce teen pregnancy. After an initial round of five-year grants to replicate and evaluate evidence-based programs (EBPs) and test new models, OAH awarded a second round of grants to 50 organizations in 31 states and the Marshall Islands in 2015. These “second-generation” grants focus on taking EBPs to scale in communities and with populations in greatest need.

To learn how individual communities planned and launched these community-wide efforts, Abt Associates staff visited five grantees midway through the second grant year and first year of full implementation to collect data for case studies. The five grantees were purposively selected to highlight themes of particular relevance to the community-wide approach.

This case illustrates how grounded, visionary leadership in a public agency inspires, engages, and sustains collaboration across sectors and within the grantee’s agency through a “Collective Impact” approach. U Choose is an initiative spearheaded by the Baltimore City Health Department (BCHD), the backbone organization coordinating partners in an effort to reduce teen pregnancy and improve adolescent sexual health across all of Baltimore, Maryland.

The case study is based on analysis of interviews and onsite observations carried out in spring 2017 and a review of program materials. Specifically, Abt staff conducted telephone and in-person semi-structured interviews with five BCHD staff, 10 staff from partner organizations, and members of the U Choose Youth Advisory Council; observed two partner meetings, a Youth Advisory Council meeting, and a classroom session of an EBP; and reviewed program documents (e.g., grant application, annual progress report, community needs assessment, dissemination materials) and event artifacts (e.g., U Choose website and Facebook page).