Building Community Capacity focuses on enhancing the capacity of providers, organizations, and systems to support whole child health by providing training and coaching, supporting development of systems infrastructure, and increasing collaboration and alignment of efforts toward shared goals.

Fostering Change in Organizational Practices for Whole Child Health

The Training Resource and Coaching Center (TRACC) provides child-serving organizations with assessment, training, resources, coaching, and consultation to ensure that children are developmentally on track from birth onwards. Children’s Institute was awarded a grant to serve as the coordinating partner for TRACC– a collaborative of 13 agencies working in different areas of whole child health and across sectors including early childhood, K-12 education, out-of-school time, health care, and trauma/mental health services. A key partner in work with schools, TRACC is collaborating with Rochester City School District schools to facilitate a whole-child health inventory and action planning process.

Supporting Systems Infrastructure

GROW Rochester, an initiative of ROC the Future directed by Children’s Institute, provides comprehensive developmental screening and referral services to three-year olds and their families in the City of Rochester. The program facilitates early detection and intervention for vision, hearing, speech/language, dental health, and social-emotional needs, which can improve school readiness and reduce risk for later academic, behavioral or health problems.

Healthy Baby Network is engaged in planning for training and certification of Black Doulas. The project aims to improve equity and quality of perinatal care available to Black mothers, a group that suffers disproportionate mortality and morbidity from pregnancy-related causes as well as disparities in birth outcomes linked with historical and structural racism as well as health inequities.

Fostering and Supporting Networks and Coalitions

Convening the Greater Rochester Commission on Children’s Social and Emotional Health Implementation Task Force (ITF)

The ITF is a group of cross-sector representatives working to address issues of access, capacity, and quality of care related to children’s social-emotional and behavioral health. The ITF has focused on trauma response and prevention and also actively promotes effective intersectionality across systems. Key stakeholders and local school districts are working collaboratively with consultants from the University of Rochester Child Psychiatry Division to improve information sharing and service coordination across sectors. A more detailed summary of the work of the ITF is available here.


Participating at Community Tables

Community tables are venues for knowledge sharing and collaboration with other organizations and initiatives working directly or indirectly to improve children’s health, well-being, and achievement including ROC the Future, Rochester-Monroe Anti-Poverty Initiative (RMAPI), All Kids Thrive, Systems Integration, the Greater Rochester Afterschool Alliance (GRASA), and the Early Childhood Development Initiative (ECDI). To better understand the landscape of these efforts, the Health Foundation engaged Collaborative Health Research to perform a scan of initiatives, organizations, and programs supporting children 0-8 and their families. Findings of this “Community Mapping” project will be shared with the community to identify opportunities for further alignment and coordination.

Evaluation and Dissemination

In May 2018 the Health Foundation awarded a contract to the RAND Corporation for a comprehensive process and outcomes evaluation of the Healthy Futures strategy. The evaluation will assess the contributions of the strategy and its components to organizational practice and systems changes as well as improved physical, cognitive, social, and emotional health of children in the Greater Rochester Area. The evaluation is also intended to provide the foundation and its grantees with ongoing feedback to support successful implementation as well as utilization of data.

In the course of the Healthy Futures strategy, we will share past and ongoing learnings to ensure that effective strategies are scaled to benefit more children and families. For example, results and lessons learned from the past Childhood Healthy Weight initiative will be disseminated through a variety of venues, with the aim of informing local and national efforts focused on school-based health promotion and obesity prevention. We will look to support efforts to bring stakeholders together to share knowledge and lessons learned regarding whole child health, facilitating cross-pollination of successful efforts across organizations, coalitions and communities.