Research and Evaluation Projects

Family Involvement Meetings

OVERVIEW: Family Involvement Meetings (FIMs) are one of the core components of the Family Center Practice Initiative.  This group decision-making process looks to engage the youth, all family members, and professionals in service planning in order to increase positive outcomes for both children and families.   The FIMs model was implemented in each of Maryland’s 24 jurisdictions.  The FIMs build the service plan based on the family’s strengths, cultural needs, and any other areas of need.  

FIMS DATA: The RYC researchers in partnership with Maryland’s Department of Human Resources have been collecting FIMs data from three main sources:

  • FIMS Feedback survey – Completed anonymously by participants of the FIMs
  • FIMS data from the LDSS
  • FIMS data from MDCHESSIE

FIMS EVALUATION: As part of statewide FCP evaluation, FIMs surveys are requested to be completed by the jurisdiction for one month after completion of their DHR Quality Assurance On-Site Review.  Surveys are administered to each willing participant who participated in the FIM.  One jurisdiction has volunteered to continue to complete the FIMs surveys monthly. The survey instrument was adapted from the University of Pittsburgh’s Child Welfare Training Program and the one page survey allows both family and professional participants to anonymously give feedback on the practices and services provided at the end of each FIM.  Data from the FIMs Feedback Surveys is coded and analyzed using SPSS.  

FIMS REPORTS: FIMs data is reported quarterly to Maryland’s Department of Human Resources through the Family Center Practice Reports.  The following is a citation to a FCP report:  

Ahn, H., Reiman, S., O'Connor, J., Shaw, T., Rushovich, B., Kolupanowich, N., Kong, J., & Moore, J. (June 2013). "Evaluating Family Centered Practice in Maryland." Annual Report from July 1, 2012 to June 30, 2013. Baltimore, MD: Ruth H. Young Center for Families and Children at the University of Maryland School of Social Work.