Youth At-Risk of Homelessness: An Early Picture of Youth and Services Supplemental Analytical Plan
This analytic plan provides supplemental information about the data and analytic methods used in the associated descriptive report. Specifically, it describes the following:
- The five data sources used to describe the services delivered and youth and young adults participating in the summative evaluation
- The analytic samples used in the report
- The process for cleaning and analyzing data
- The response rates for survey data used to describe the characteristics of youth
- Granular data on the characteristics of hubs presented in the associated descriptive report
Preventing homelessness among youth and young adults involved in the child welfare system remains an urgent issue for child welfare policymakers and practitioners. To expand the evidence base on interventions designed to prevent homelessness among youth and young adults with foster care histories at age 14 or older, the Administration for Children and Families (ACF) of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services launched the Youth At-Risk of Homelessness (YARH) multiphase grant program.
ACF contracted with Mathematica in the first two phases of YARH to conduct process studies, provide evaluation technical assistance to grantees, support grantees in articulating and refining the design of their service models, assess the evaluability of each service model, and disseminate the knowledge grantees developed. ACF is in the third phase of YARH (2019 to 2028, known as YARH-3). This phase provides information to the field on how to better serve youth and young adults through a rigorous summative evaluation of a policy-relevant comprehensive service model, Pathways to Success (Pathways), developed by Colorado. Pathways is an intensive, coach-like case management model for youth and young adults with foster care histories at age 14 or older.
37 counties within Colorado are participating in the summative evaluation. Some counties have a small number of youth and young adults who need services. In these cases, adjacent counties form a hub for service provisions. 15 hubs, encompassing the 37 counties, are participating in the summative evaluation. Enrollment for the summative evaluation began in September 2021.
About a year into the enrollment period, the YARH descriptive report (Shiferaw et al. 2023) takes stock of the services delivered through Pathways and comparison (business-as-usual) programs, the characteristics of the hubs in the evaluation, and the characteristics of the youth and young adults enrolled through August 2022. The YARH team, in consultation with ACF, is releasing a series of analytic plans for the summative evaluation. This analytic plan provides supplemental information about the data and analytic methods used in the descriptive report. The team will release additional analytic plans that focus on the methods for a specific product.