Evaluation of the Mid-Term National Review for the Strategic Evaluation of the Enhanced Prevention Focused Approach for the First Nation Child and Family Services Program - Follow-up Report Status Update as of March 31, 2012

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Action Plan Implementation Status Update Report to the Evaluation, Performance Measurement and Review Committee - As of March 31, 2012

EDUCATION & SOCIAL DEVELOPMENT PROGRAMS AND PARTNERSHIPS

Evaluation of the Mid-Term National Review for the Strategic Evaluation of the Enhanced Prevention Focused Approach for the First Nation Child and Family Services Program
Approval Date: 09/23/11
Project Recommendations Action Plan Expected Completion Date Program Response
1. Increase linkages with relevant federal and provincial ministries to address how governments can assist agencies in improving service delivery on reserve, as well as work with provincial governments to improve the cultural appropriateness of services off reserve. While continuing to work collaboratively with relevant federal and provincial ministries through existing tripartite tables, bi-lateral forums and other communication opportunities, AANDC HQ and Regions will explore the feasibility of Federal/Provincial/Territorial working groups as a means to facilitate the sharing of best practices and collaboration between all levels of government. Sharing best practices on-reserve will be done in an attempt to assist the provinces in their development of policies regarding culturally appropriate services off-reserve. June 2012 Status: Underway

Update/Rationale:
As of 31/03/2012:

On October 26, 2011, AANDC was invited to attend a meeting of the Federal/ Provincial / Territorial Directors of Child Welfare Committee. During this meeting, AANDC was given the opportunity to discuss the Enhanced Prevention Focused Approach, as well as the indicators associated with the FNCFS Information Management system.

AANDC has also had face-to-face meetings with several provincial/ territorial representatives in the past six months including Alberta, Yukon, British Columbia, Manitoba, Nova Scotia and Quebec. These meetings have targeted issues such as performance indicators, Accountability Frameworks, MOU discussions, EPFA discussions, etc. and have helped AANDC to continue to foster productive relationships with the provinces.

AES: Underway - The approaches undertaken by the program have the potential to effectively respond to this recommendation.
2. Encourage consistent follow-up tripartite discussions in every region to address issues as they arise and work collaboratively with all parties to resolve them.
  • AANDC Headquarters and Regional offices recognize the challenges of consistent follow-up and will explore the feasibility of developing an approach of proactively addressing these challenges, as agreed upon by relevant stakeholders.
March 2013 Status: Underway

Update/Rationale:
As of 31/03/2012:

In order to encourage consistent follow-up of tripartite discussions, AANDC has been providing regions with $30,000 per year for regional roundtable discussions. HQ has been following up with regions to ensure utilization of these resources to try to address and resolve issues within regions within tripartite discussions. HQ has attended some tripartite meetings with regions over the past year (i.e. Alberta, NS, MB).

AES: Underway - The program will have to ensure the consistent follow up of these meetings and continue to foster these relationships.
3. Ensure clear and continuous information sharing between AANDC Headquarters and Regional offices so that all parties are informed of decision-making processes and potential issues coming from the regions. AANDC has already been made aware of the challenges of information sharing between AANDC Regions and HQ. Within the last six months AANDC has begun to improve upon these challenges by scheduling monthly meetings for FNCFS staff as well as scheduling monthly meetings between Regional staff and Regional Director Generals. In 1 years time AANDC will re-evaluate how these meetings have improved information sharing between Regions and HQ and make any necessary adjustments or improvements as required. September 2012 Status: Underway

Update/Rationale:
As of 31/03/2012:

In 6 months time AANDC will re-evaluate how the monthly FNCFS staff meetings, and the Regional staff and Regional Director Generals meetings have improved information sharing between Regions and HQ and make any necessary adjustments or improvements as required.

AANDC has also had two face-to-face FNCFS HQ – Regional meetings in the past six months, which has resulted in increased information sharing between HQ and Regions.

AES: Underway - AES will incorporate the findings into the next FNCFS evaluation scheduled for 2012-13.
4. Increase capacity of First Nations agencies by developing/updating tools (i.e. manuals, guidelines, templates, etc.) and by providing training as appropriate to assist them in meeting AANDC reporting requirements and in being more strategic in their long-term planning.
  • The Operations and Quality Management directorate of SPPB has been developing and updating tools, manuals, guidelines and templates in order to enhance compliance and reduce reporting burden in the regions and agencies. These documents will be completed and shared with regions and recipients by on an as-built-basis starting in October 2011 with final implementation scheduled by March 31, 2012.
March 2012 & ongoing Status: Underway

Update/Rationale:
As of 31/03/2012:

AANDC has been developing and updating tools, manuals, guidelines and templates in order to clarify program requirements, enhance compliance and reduce reporting burden in the regions and agencies. The National Social Programs Manual has been updated and distributed to regions and is now available on AANDC's website, and the Management Control Framework; Integrated Risk Management Framework; a National Handbook on Program Compliance; and a DCI Management Framework are nearing completion.

Regions use capacity development resources within FNCFS to assist Agencies in increasing their capacity (i.e. on development and revisions to Business Plans; development and reporting of indicators; and financial management).

AANDC has reviewed the 5-year Business Plan and has ensured consistent use of the tool by clarifying that the intent is for recipients to provide annual updates which still project ahead 5 years (a "rolling" business plan). Modifications have been made to the Data Collection Instrument (DCI) reporting requirements in order to ensure alignment with risk and consistency with FNCFS Program and Policy on Transfer Payments requirements.

AES: Underway - AES will support AANDC efforts to assist FNCFS agencies to be more strategic in their reporting and long-term planning.

  • An AANDC department wide capacity development initiative is currently being developed that will help identify ways in which to enhance capacity within First Nations communities. Following the implementation of this initiative AANDC will assess linkages that could strengthen First Nation Capacity under the FNCFS program.
March 2012
The 5-year Business Plans are a required mechanism for funding under EPFA in response to improving accountability within the FNCFS Program. AANDC will review the existing Business Plan template and make modifications as needed, in conjunction with the departmental-wide exercise of implementing the Policy on Transfer Payments and reducing the overall recipient reporting burden. April 2014
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