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 June 30, 2014

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Action Plan Implementation Status Update Report to the Evaluation, Performance Measurement and Review Committee - As of June 30, 2014

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: Completed - Closed

Update/Rationale:
As of 22/02/2013:

AANDC is working with Tripartite Tables in the Regions to address how both federal and provincial governments can assist in improving service delivery on reserve including cultural appropriateness of services.

For example, AANDC has been meeting with Alberta FNCFS agency Directors, First Nation PTOs, and the province to discuss challenges and strengths within the CFS program. Work will continue on both a strengthened tripartite engagement process and a bilateral accountability framework aimed at improving services and results for First Nation children in Alberta.

As well, in Nova Scotia, a tripartite Executive Steering Committee meets regularly to understand the continuum of provincial services, as well as provincial staffing standards to ensure better response times. The tripartite committee is in the process of having a consultant conduct an organizational review and provide coaching for the development of a new Business Plan. This will support operational effectiveness and enhance service delivery in the one FNCFS Agency in Nova Scotia.

All jurisdictions transitioned to EPFA are based on tripartite frameworks, and these tripartite groups comprised of First Nations, and Provincial and Federal officials, continue to meet regularly in order to ensure FNCFS Agencies are aware of provincial trends and training sessions. Annually updated Business Plans are a requirement of funding agreements between AANDC and FNCFS Agencies, and these are reviewed and approved by the respective province before being accepted by AANDC.

AES: Closed.
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: Completed - Closed

Update/Rationale
As of 31/03/2013:

Ongoing tripartite meetings take place in all six EPFA jurisdictions to monitor progress. Tripartite meetings took place in British Columbia in January 2013 to update the 2008 framework for the implementation of EPFA. Tripartite meetings were held in January 2013 in Nova Scotia to continue the monitoring of implementation of EPFA. Tripartite meetings took place in Manitoba in March 2013 to discuss the development of a data sharing agreement.

Tripartite meetings were held in Alberta in January and March 2013 to discuss a tripartite engagement process and to continue the monitoring of the implementation of EPFA. Regular tripartite meetings also take place in Saskatchewan and PEI.

AES: Processes are in place to address this recommendation. Closed.
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: Completed - Closed

Update/Rationale:
As of 30/09/2012:

Bi-lateral conference calls with regions continue to take place on a regular basis. Monthly conference calls continue to be held between HQ FNCFS program staff and their regional counterparts, and the SPPB DG and ARDGs on all Branch issues.

In addition, FNCFS had a face-to-face meeting with regional counterparts in May 2012. This meeting targeted program management issues such as risk-based reporting and Data Collection Instruments, and policy issues such as targeted funding/unexpended funds and program terms and conditions.

A Branch-wide email inquiry address is now in place; this address is provided for AANDC regional staff requiring clarification on respective program policies or management practices from SPPB. HQ responses and clarifications are stored in a repository that is available to all regional and HQ users.

These forums continue to improve the flow of information between FNCFS HQ and regions.

AES: The Program has sufficiently addressed this recommendation. Closed.
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 30/06/2014:

  • The national working group for FNCFS on compliance has been meeting to discuss the requirements. There have been delays due to other priorities and dependencies, but it is expected that the work on program-specific compliance tools be completed in Q2. Pilot reviews to test and optimize national compliance approaches and tools suitable to each region/jurisdiction are expected to take place in Q3.
  • GCPedia is being used as a project management platform over the next year to: 1) engage, coordinate and track department-wide implementation of AANDC’s eight commitments in response to the Internal Follow-up Audit of Capacity Development; and 2) track implications of using this tool for people, processes and outcomes (more information on this below).
  • The FNCFS program has established the working group on National Data Collection Instruments. This working group is currently updating the Business Plan template and adapting its content to assist FNCFS agencies in meeting AANDC requirements. These tools and modifications to the reporting cycle will also assist FNCFS agencies in their strategic planning. By aligning the timing of business planning and reporting to federal and provincial requirements, the agencies’ reporting burden will gradually be reduced. These measures are expected to improve tripartite collaboration throughout the business cycle.
AES: Good progress to date. Update in Q4.
  • 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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