Our next Differential Response (DR) districts, 4 and 16, (representing Lincoln, Benton, Linn and Washington) are busy preparing for implementation in April. Since October these districts have been in what we call “the readiness phase.” That means they are orienting to what is DR and what is not, developing advisory committees, subcommittees, meeting with partners and contractors, working hard at mastering the Oregon Safety Model (OSM) and training staff and partners. All of this is being done, on top of regular daily duties. It’s a busy time.
You might be asking why it takes so long to implement DR; right now we are using a six-month period for readiness. Using implementation science principals we are working to give staff the resources and time they need to make this shift. DR is a major change in how we do our work and how an intervention is implemented can impact the outcomes of the intervention. We are striving for success so we are taking the time necessary to do this work right. As more districts implement the readiness phase could be adjusted.
In District 4, manager Marco Benavides says he and his staff are enjoying the ride of readiness. He advises his staff not to panic relying on the support of consultants and training. He is encouraging staff to volunteer for any task that relates to DR and consider it a learning experience and preparation for a change that is here to stay.
In District 16, manager, Rolanda Garcia says the district is very engaged in the readiness process and staff from Child Welfare and Self-Sufficiency are actively participating in subcommittee work and trainings offered. She also says the feedback from the DR orientations that they are providing has been very positive from partners and stakeholders in the community. Rolanda says her district is on track with their readiness plan and they are eager to begin serving families in April.
Thank you to Marco and Rolanda for sharing their DR readiness experience. We will keep you all updated as these districts continue the statewide implementation of DR.