Urban Affairs and New Nontraditional Programs Plan of Work

1998 - 2001


STATE GOALS

Goal 1

Goal 2

Goal 3

Goal 4

Goal 5

Goal 6

STATE GOAL 1:

Create a greater appreciation for the value of diversity.

SITUATION:

The Extension Committee on Organization and Policy and the Extension Service, U.S. Department of Agriculture in the document "Pathway to Diversity" (1991) expressed a vision for the Cooperative Extension System as "a diverse and multicultural organization that values, is committed to, and embodies pluralism as a long term investment in the future." The document further expressed the perceived role of Extension as "a model for achieving a pluralistic society." A pluralistic organizational culture values diversity in all dimensions of human differences and incorporates mutual respect, acceptance, teamwork, and productivity among all people.

As the outreach component of the state's Land Grant institutions, the Alabama Cooperative Extension System has a tremendous role to play in helping families and communities understand, accommodate and respond to individual and cultural differences. Extension, by its very definition, is an organization operating under the commitment to provide educational programs, materials, and equal opportunity employment to all people without regard to race, color, national origin, religion, sex, age, veteran status or disability. This commitment addresses directly the responsibilities of Extension to provide outreach services to diverse audiences, and indirectly addresses the organization's obligation to design its programs around the expressed needs of all citizens, i.e. diverse audiences.

All communities need to establish a sense of unity among culturally diverse families, groups and organizations. Programs and activities implemented under the concept of valuing diversity are applicable to communities statewide-urban as well as rural. However, there is a recognized need within urban communities to strengthen the sense of unity through more intense programming efforts which demonstrate more fully the significant relationship of unity to quality of life (Schweitzer, 1996).

The population in the state of Alabama is becoming increasingly diverse relative to age, race, gender and culture. As the state's population changes, so must its response to diversity. The nature of this response is crucial to the well being of individuals, families and communities. The truth is, differences alone do not cause racial problems, but how people respond to differences can. The history of the nation unfortunately reflects a race consciousness which its southern states have struggled to overcome for many years. There is a growing need for Alabama citizens to strive to enhance their appreciation for differences and to move forward to eradicate prejudice through education. America was built on the unified contributions of its diverse constituents. Each race, culture, sex and age group has positive contributions to make toward the betterment of human society. The diversity of the nation as a whole and within the state of Alabama "is a source of strength that should be appreciated and cultivated" (Beyond Rhetoric, 1991).

OBJECTIVE 1:

Educate urban communities on diversity issues including age, gender, race and culture, to promote understanding and respect for diversity.

Performance Goal:

Increase by 10% the number of programs and community events designed to enhance the understanding of citizens on diversity issues of age, gender, race and culture.

Outcome:

More Alabama citizens will have opportunities to increase their knowledge and understanding of individual differences including race, gender, age and cultural differences.

Baseline Measures:

Number of diversity programs and community events planned and implemented during the previous year (1996).

Indicators:

Number of diversity programs implemented during present year. _____

Number of citizens participating. _____

Diversity of participating audiences by:

Sex:

Race:

Age:

Number of cultures represented at events and activities. _____

OBJECTIVE 2:

Establish environments that promote unity and sustain diversity within urban communities.

Performance Goal:

Expose citizens to multicultural (involving many cultures) activities which go beyond simple awareness of other cultures, to include adapting to or integrating cultural differences to build healthy and lasting relationships across racial and cultural barriers.

Outcome:

Citizens will become more tolerant and accepting of the differences of others, and more cognizant of the positive impacts of diversity on individual, family and community well-being.

Baseline Measures:

Existing community activities which have a multicultural focus.

Existing statistics on the level of involvement in these programs.

Indicators:

Number of multicultural programs or activities developed during the present year. _____

Number of multicultural programs or activities implemented. _____

Number of citizens exposed to multicultural programs or activities involving adapting to or integrating cultural differences. _____

Number of citizens reporting more tolerant and accepting behavior. _____

OBJECTIVE 3:

Collaborate with law enforcement and criminal justice agencies to establish programs to expand and enhance understanding of diversity in the law enforcement arena.

Performance Goal:

Conduct law enforcement and criminal justice diversity training to equip a minimum of 5% of the state's law enforcement and criminal justice professionals with an enhanced understanding and more competent skills to react appropriately to diversity and diversity issues in their professional roles.

Outcome:

Law enforcement and criminal justice personnel are better prepared to respond to diversity issues in their role as professionals.

Baseline Measures:

Statistics on the racial and cultural make-up of the state of Alabama.

Indicators:

Number of law enforcement and criminal justice personnel indicating:

Better understanding of diversity. _____

Taking initiative to improve how they respond to cultural/racial issues in their roles as professionals. _____

OBJECTIVE 4:

Develop and implement cultural arts programs to expand the knowledge and appreciation of diversity among cultures.

Performance Goal:

Provide cultural arts programs in a minimum of 15% of the state's counties.

Outcome:

Increased knowledge of cultural differences and folkways among Alabama citizens.

Baseline Measures:

Cultural arts programs offered during the previous year.

Indicators:

Number of cultural arts programs implemented during the present year. _____

Increase in cultural art program offerings over last year:

Number of participants involved. _____

Number of participants indicating a greater understanding and appreciation for cultural diversity. _____

REFERENCES:

Beyond Rhetoric, A New American Agenda for Children and Families, Final Report of the National Commission on Children, Superintendent of Document, U.S. Government Printing Office, Washington, DC, 1991.

"Celebrating Diversity: A Learning Tool for Working With People of Different Cultures," American Association of Retired Persons, 1990.

"The Challenge of Diversity," Equal Employment Opportunity and Managing Differences in the 1990's, Bureau of National Affairs, Inc., Rockville, Maryland.

Dumas, Lynn. Talking with Your Child About a Troubled World, New York: Ballentine Books, 1992.

Dupecher, Martha. "Breeding Bigotry Out of Children" Kiwanis, January 1994.

"Pathway to Diversity," Strategic Plan for the Cooperative Extension System's Emphasis on Diversity, Strategic Planning Task Force on Diversity, October 1991.

Schauber, Ann C. "Leap Into Diversity," News and Views, The Official Publication of the National Association of Extension Agents, January 1993, Vol. 46, No. 1.

Schweitzer, J. "Studying the Social Fabric in Urban Neighborhoods" Urban Record, Urban Affairs Program, Michigan State University, Vol. 12, No. 1, Summer, 1996.

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STATE GOAL 2:

Strengthen the resiliency of individuals, youth and families by enhancing coping and survival skills of citizens in Alabama's urban communities.

SITUATION:

The concept of family has expanded over the years to include many types. Families can be as diverse as single headed households managed by teenage moms to widowed senior citizens residing in retirement communities. In fact, the meaning of family has become so broad that the term is no longer associated only with those who dwell together under the same roof, but is inclusive of individuals who share similar concerns and conflicts (Rouse, "A Profile of Families in North Carolina Public Housing Communities"). For many urban families this broad definition is significant, for as society and traditions change, larger numbers of families are having to rely upon their communities for support in addressing needs and responding to issues which must be confronted daily.

Social, economic, environmental and legal issues including violence and crime, increased abuse and neglect, family conflicts and welfare reform place some urban families at risk for meeting basic core needs and having coping skills necessary for survival. Specific factors likely to be related to risk are race, gender, income, and age (Wireman, 1985). With respect to age, for example, seniors are making up an increasingly larger percentage of the nation's population and more widowed seniors are living independently and heading their own household (Winchip, 1995). The elderly comprise a large portion (one in five) of the nation's population at poverty level, as larger numbers of elderly women are now living alone with decreased pensions.

At the other end of the age spectrum, thousands of youth across the nation and within the state live in distressed neighborhoods of high poverty and high crime. During 1995, 1,232 juveniles in the state were arrested for violent crimes including murder, rape, robbery and aggravated assault (VOICES, Spring 1996). About two-thirds of these arrests were in the counties of Mobile, Jefferson and Montgomery.

Relative to race, black females are more likely than white females to head a household or have an income below the poverty level. For most of those affected, being below the poverty level means more than simply lacking amenities of life-it means lacking adequate food, medical care, heat and clothes (Wireman, 1985).

These are only a few examples of situations which place families at risk and pose threats to their health and safety. When families are forced to function in troubled environments of deficiencies and conflict, they are denied opportunities to grow and develop to their fullest potential. Community institutions such as Extension outreach services, other service groups, government agencies, schools and charitable organizations have important roles to play in establishing supportive environments to help parents and their children experience full and fruitful lives.

The social problems facing families of the 90's have emerged over time, and helping families to cope and survive will also take time. The level of success will depend upon the commitment, leadership and financial resources provided to make a difference.

OBJECTIVE 1:

Implement family dynamics training to teach urban families how to identify and respond to forces which impact their lives.

Performance Goal 1a:

Increase the availability of training programs for urban audiences in balancing work and family by 10%.

Outcome 1a:

Families have access to training which will help them to become more knowledgeable of techniques for managing work and family responsibilities.

Baseline Measures:

Number of programs in balancing work and family which were offered in previous year.

Indicators:

Number of training programs implemented which focused on balancing work and family during present year. _____

Number of participants. _____

Number adopting new behavior. _____

Performance Goal 1b:

Increase the availability of programs on understanding family diversity by 10%.

Outcome 1b:

Families who are more understanding and accepting of their status as a diverse, yet functional unit.

Baseline Measures:

Number of programs offered on family diversity during previous year.

Indicators:

Number of programs requested by community groups on family diversity. _____

Number of training programs implemented during present year which focused on understanding family diversity. _____

Number of participants. _____

Number of participants reporting having obtained an enhanced understanding of family diversity. _____

Performance Goal 1c:

Increase the availability of programs on handling family conflicts by 10%.

Outcome 1c:

Families who are more prepared to live, function in, and ultimately change settings of family conflict.

Baseline Measures:

Number of programs offered on handling family conflict during previous year.

Indicators:

Number of training programs implemented which focused on handling family conflict. _____

Number of participants. _____

Number reporting adopting behavior on handling family conflict. _____

Performance Goal 1d:

Increase the availability of programs which focus on the effects of substance abuse on the family by 10%.

Outcome 1d:

Greater awareness among Alabama's citizens of the effects of substance abuse.

Baseline Measures:

Number of programs conducted during the previous year which focused on the effects of substance abuse on the family. _____

Indicators:

Number of training programs implemented during present year which focused on the effects of substance abuse on the family. _____

Number of participants. _____

Number reporting having obtained an enhanced understanding of the effects of substance abuse on the family. _____

OBJECTIVE 2:

Initiate survival skills programs to prepare citizens to respond to and function in environments of stress and change.

Performance Goal 2a:

Increase skills in stress management for 25% of Alabama's urban citizens who participate in survival skills programs.

Outcome 2a:

Citizens who can function in and respond to stressful situations.

Baseline Measures:

Number of groups requesting stress management training during previous year.

Indicators:

Number of individuals trained in stress management skills. _____

Number of groups requesting stress management training. _____

Number of groups trained in stress management skills. _____

Number of participants reporting greater control of stressful situations. _____

Performance Goal 2b:

Increase competence in layoff survival skills (including financial and emotional survival and job search survival) for 25% of unemployed citizens in urban communities in Alabama who participate in lay-off survival skills programs.

Outcome 2b:

Workers experiencing lay-off are aware of effective financial and emotional approaches to survival.

Baseline Measures:

Unemployment statistics in urban communities in Alabama.

Indicators:

Program participants reporting:

Performance Goal 2c:

Increase the availability of workforce preparedness training to a minimum of 5% of the unemployed population in Alabama's urban counties.

Outcome 2c:

Enhanced employment-seeking skills

Baseline Measure:

Percentage of unemployed in Alabama's 10 urban counties.

Number of citizens in urban counties seeking employment in previous year.

Indicators:

Percentage increase in the number of job seekers on the job market. _____

Percentage increase in the number of people becoming employed. _____

Performance Goal 2d:

Educate citizens and communities on their roles and responsibilities in violence prevention and conflict resolution.

Outcome 2d:

Citizens are more informed of their roles and responsibilities in community violence and conflict resolution.

Baseline Measures:

Number of workshops and training meetings conducted during the previous year on roles and responsibilities of citizens in violence and conflict resolution.

Indicators:

Number of training meetings conducted. _____

Number of participants. _____

Estimated number of contacts through:

Performance Goal 2e:

Partner with emergency response agencies to prepare a minimum of 10 citizens in 20 urban communities of the 10 urban counties in Alabama to respond to emergencies through emergency response training.

Outcome 2e:

An increase in the number of citizens who are trained to respond in emergency situations.

Baseline Measures:

Existing number of emergency response trainees in Alabama's urban counties.

Indicators:

Number of partnerships with emergency response agencies. _____

Number of citizens trained. _____

Number of counties involved. _____

Number of communities involved. _____

Number of emergencies responded to by trainees. _____

Performance Goal 2f:

Collaborate with health care providers to address health and safety issues in 25% of Alabama's urban communities.

Outcome 2f:

Increased access to health care information in urban communities.

Baseline Measures:

Percentage of families with limited access to health care.

Indicators:

Number of health care brochures distributed. _____

Number of health care programs/workshops/seminars presented. _____

Number of health care providers collaborating with the program/s. _____

Number of citizens serviced through the program/s. _____

OBJECTIVE 3:

Raise the awareness of parents and community leaders about the needs of urban youth.

Performance Goal 3a:

Conduct community assessments in 15% of Alabama's counties to prioritize needs of urban youth.

Outcome 3a:

Accurate and current analyses of needs based on scientific assessments.

Baseline Measures:

Existing data from youth assessments.

Indicators:

Top 5 priority needs obtained from youth assessment and the number of programs initiated to address each of the top 5 identified needs:

 Priority 1. _____________  Number of programs initiated. ______
 Priority 2. _____________  Number of programs initiated. ______
 Priority 3. _____________  Number of programs initiated. ______
 Priority 4. _____________  Number of programs initiated. ______
 Priority 5. _____________  Number of programs initiated. ______

Performance Goal 3b:

Develop community coalitions to address 50% of the needs/priority issues of urban youth which were identified by the assessment.

Outcome 3b:

Reductions in negative behavior among urban youth resulting from un-addressed needs.

Baseline Measures:

Alabama Kids Count Data.

Indicators:

Number of coalitions established. _____

Percentage of youth issues addressed. _____

Number of youth involved. _____

Number of communities involved. _____

Number of parents gaining new knowledge about interacting with their youth. _____

Number of parents reporting adopting the behavior. _____

OBJECTIVE 4:

Educate young adults to take responsible roles in their families and communities.

Performance Goal 4a:

Provide training to prepare young adults for responsible independent living.

Outcome 4a:

Young adults who can successfully move from a state of dependence to one of independence.

Baseline Measures:

None listed at this time.

Indicators:

Number of young adults moving into responsible independent lifestyles who participated in training. _____

Number reporting adopting practices recommended to prepare them for independent living. _____

Performance Goal 4b:

Reduce the incidence of negligent teen fathers by 10% in a minimum of 15% of the state's counties.

Outcome 4b:

Teen fathers who accept more responsibility for their children.

Baseline Measures:

Number of teen fathers within the state exhibiting irresponsible behavior.

Indicators:

Number of teen fathers who report accepting more responsibility for their children as a result of training. _____

Percentage of decrease in the number of irresponsible teen fathers. _____

Performance Goal 4c:

Establish coalitions with rescue missions, senior housing facilities, etc. to prepare youth, homeless citizens and the elderly to function in transitional environments during transitional periods through counseling and training programs in transitional living.

Outcome 4c:

Enhanced coping and management skills for families and individuals who must function in new, temporary and transitional home environments.

Baseline Measures:

Number of training programs implemented during the previous year to prepare youth, homeless and elderly citizens to function in transitional environments.

Indicators:

Number of coalitions formed. _____

Number of training programs. _____

Number of participants. _____

Number reporting enhanced coping and management skills. _____

OBJECTIVE 5:

Partner with agencies who provide legal support to deliver training in legal education which will assist citizens in responding to basic legal issues.

Performance Goal 5a:

Reduce the incidence of evictions and tenant abuse through tenants rights and responsibilities education.

Outcome 5a:

Property renters who are more knowledgeable of their rights.

Baseline Measures:

Recorded evictions during previous year.

Indicators:

Number of training programs conducted. _____

Number of citizens participating. _____

Number having gained knowledge on tenants rights and responsibilities. _____

Number reporting changes in their behavior as tenants. _____

Percentage of reduction in evictions during the present year. _____

Performance Goal 5b:

Reduce the incidence of land and property disputes through land and property rights and responsibilities education.

Outcome 5b:

Land owners who are more knowledgeable of their rights and responsibilities.

Baseline Measures:

Existing reports/cases of land and property disputes.

Indicators:

Number of training programs conducted. _____

Number of citizens participating. _____

Number indicating having gained knowledge of their land and property rights and responsibilities. _____

Number reporting changes in their behavior as tenants. _____

Percentage of reduction in land and property disputes during present year. _____

Performance Goal 5c:

Provide legal assistance educational workshops for senior citizens groups.

Outcome 5c:

Accessible legal information for senior citizens.

Baseline Measures:

Number of workshops on legal assistance which were provided during previous year.

Indicators:

Number of workshops accessible to senior citizens during present year. _____

Number of senior citizen groups trained. _____

Performance Goal 5d:

Increase the number of training sessions on tax issues and concerns by 10%.

Outcome 5d:

Increased knowledge for action in dealing with tax issues and concerns.

Baseline Measures:

Number of training sessions on tax issues and concerns conducted during previous year.

Indicators:

Number of sessions held on tax issues and concerns during present year. _____

Number of citizens taking advantage of sessions. _____

Number reporting having gained increased knowledge of tax issues and concerns. _____

OBJECTIVE 6:

Partner with school PTA's, community centers, etc. to implement "family fairs" to promote family unity while simultaneously educating families on such issues as family health and nutrition, parenting, youth development, etc.

Performance Goal:

Conduct a minimum of one "family fair" in a minimum of 15% of the state's counties to promote family unity and to enhance families' knowledge of health and family issues.

Outcome:

Families have access to more activities that encourage family togetherness, and increase their knowledge of health and family issues.

Baseline Measures:

Number of "family fairs" conducted during previous year.

Indicators:

Number of community partnerships established to conduct "family fairs." _____

Number of "family fairs" conducted. _____

Number of families involved in "family fairs." _____

REFERENCES:

"Alabama's Juvenile Violent Crime: How Bad Is It?" VOICES for Alabama's Children, Spring 1996.

"Alabama Kids Count," 1995 Report, VOICES for Alabama's Children, Birmingham, AL, 1995.

Beyond Rhetoric, A New American Agenda for Children and Families, Final Report of the National Commission on Children, Superintendent of Documents, U.S. Government Printing Office, Washington, DC 1991.

Leidenfrost, N.B. "Fifty Facts About Poverty." National Program Leader, HEHN, Extension Service, USDA, 1993.

Leidenfrost, N.B. "Poverty: An Overview and Background Paper." National Program Leader, HEHN, Extension Service, USDA, 1993.

Rouse, S. "A Profile of Families in North Carolina Public Housing Communities," Cooperative Extension Program, North Carolina State University, 19___.

Winchip, S.S. "Proportions of Income Expended for Rent Among African American and Caucasian Elderly." Journal of Family and Consumer Sciences, Summer, 1995, p. 27-33.

Wireman, P. Urban Neighborhoods, Networks and Families. Lexington, Massachusetts: Lexington Books, 1984.

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STATE GOAL 3:

Build new supportive institutions, groups and teams that allow families to exercise their power to shape their own communities.

SITUATION:

"Unified visions" are key words defining a movement impacting many family and community decisions in the 1990s. Organizations are catching on to the idea that connectivity among individuals and organizations who share the same goals gets results. Empowerment groups contend that ultimately this connectivity, undergirded by a sense of common mission, can help change lives and build healthy environments for individuals, families and entire communities (Kordesh, 1995).

Today, families and communities must respond to unprecedented changes and challenges. While both change and challenge are in some respects attractive, particularly to growing urban environments, both sometimes include seemingly insurmountable problems. So it is with many urban communities where poverty, social despair and fiscal distress are pervasive.

To say the least, urban leaders and families are perplexed in their search for solutions to problems which undermine community growth and productivity. In response, empowerment groups stress agendas which encourage citizens to rally together. People working together can effect community changes which support people oriented policies and which produce family and community oriented programs which make a difference. President Clinton in the "National Urban Policy Report" (1995) described "metropolitan connections" which encouraged communities to cut through barriers of race, income and jurisdictional boundaries to form new empowerment support groups or teams to effect change.

Through well structured and organized supportive institutions, families can assert their power as a collective force within their communities. Essentially, advocates of family empowerment believe that families must take steps toward rebuilding the strengths and productive capacities they once had which are now provided by other formal institutions at local, state and national levels (Kordesh, 1995).

Cooperative Extension, since 1914, has been in the business of helping people to help themselves. The System is thus well equipped to assist Alabama families in making positive strides towards building new supportive institutions of empowerment which will allow citizens to exercise their strengths in shaping their own communities.

OBJECTIVE 1:

Design mentoring groups or organizations to provide more positive role models in urban communities to support positive youth development.

Performance Goal 1a:

Increase the visibility and availability of mentoring programs and competent mentors by 10%.

Outcome 1a:

Youth in urban communities can identify with role models who are setting positive examples for them to follow.

Baseline Measures:

Number of existing organized mentoring programs.

Indicators:

Number of new mentoring programs established. _____

Number of mentors recruited. _____

Number of youth benefiting from the established mentoring programs. _____

Performance Goal 1b:

Through "preparation for mentoring programs" train a minimum of 100 mentors across the state to serve as positive role models in urban communities to support positive youth development.

Outcome 1b:

Mentors are prepared to function as models for youth in urban communities.

Baseline Measures:

Number of existing organized mentoring programs.

Number of mentors trained during the previous year.

Indicators:

Number of mentors trained during the present year. _____

Number of trained mentors accepting mentoring commitments. _____

Performance Goal 1c:

Establish agreements with individuals, organizations, corporations, etc. to support youth job shadowing programs for career development.

Outcome 1c:

Youth are exposed to potential career areas and can acquire basic job skills by observing professionals in an actual work environment.

Baseline Measures:

Number of existing agreements to support youth job shadowing programs.

Indicators:

Number of job shadowing agreements established. _____

Number of career areas explored. _____

Number of youth participating in job shadowing experiences. _____

Number expressing a career interest based on job shadowing experiences. _____

Performance Goal 1d:

Through organized workshops coordinated with schools, community centers, youth organizations, churches, etc. develop and disseminate state-of-the-art programming in small business operations for youth entrepreneurs.

Outcome 1d:

Youth will learn business management skills.

Baseline Measures:

None at this time.

Indicators:

Types of program information disseminated as indicated by number of:

Number of workshops coordinated with:

Total number of youth experiencing activities in entrepreneurism. _____

Performance Goal 1e:

Implement a statewide annual Youth Entre/Expo Spring Enrichment Camp involving a minimum of 100 youth.

Outcome 1e:

Youth will receive in depth experiential learning in business management skills.

Baseline Measures:

Number of existing youth entrepreneur camps.

Indicators:

Number of counties involved in Entre/Expo Camp. _____

Number of youth involved in Entre/Expo Camp. _____

Number understanding the process of entrepreneurism. _____

Number expressing interest in careers as entrepreneurs. _____

Number involved in or taking initiatives to implement small business (i.e., weekend lawn cutting, candy stores, sewing for profit, etc.) . _____

Performance Goal 1f:

Through organized training coordinated with juvenile correctional facilities, community centers, youth organizations, etc., involve youth-at-risk in prevention and intervention counseling including the YES I CAN Make A Difference Program.

Outcome 1f:

Reduced incidences of at-risk behavior.

Baseline Measures:

Number of cases in juvenile correctional facilities, previous year (1996).

Indicators:

Number of training sessions coordinated with:

Number of youth involved. _____

Number of cases in juvenile correctional facilities during present year. _____

Percentage of reduction from previous year. _____

Performance Goal 1g:

Use state of the art technology such as video transfer, computer programs, and distance learning to deliver tutorials to at-risk youth including those in juvenile correctional programs, those failing state exit exams, those involved in teen parenting programs, etc.

Outcome 1g:

Students who have struggled in school will experience success.

Baseline Measures:

Existing tutorial programs for at-risk youth.

Indicators:

Number of tutorial programs delivered using:

Number of programs delivered at:

Juvenile correctional facilities. _____

As a result of help from tutorials:

OBJECTIVE 2:

Create support groups in "elderly dynamics" to educate and counsel citizens on the physical and emotional needs of the elderly to prepare elder care givers and concerned communities to understand and better assist aging citizens.

Performance Goal 2a:

Establish coalitions with medical professionals to reduce incidences of the abuse or misuse of prescribed medication by 25% among senior citizens who participate in Extension programs designed to educate seniors on the use, abuse and misuse of medication and conflicting prescriptions.

Outcome 2a:

Fewer senior citizens who are abusing, misusing or on conflicting medications.

Baseline Measures:

None at this time.

Indicators:

Performance Goal 2b:

Collaborate with medical professionals to increase the availability of health care information to the elderly by providing video transfers of information on commonly asked medical questions to senior citizens groups.

Outcome 2b:

Seniors are more informed on health care questions.

Baseline Measures:

None at this time.

Indicators:

Number of senior groups serviced with video transfer programs. _____

Number of medical professionals lending support to the program. _____

Number of medical facilities lending support to the program. _____

Number of technical support groups lending support to the program. _____

Performance Goal 2c:

Promote pet facilitated therapy (awareness) programs for senior citizens.

Outcome 2c:

Senior citizens are educated on supportive therapy to address physical and psychological health needs.

Baseline Measures:

None at this time.

Indicators:

Number of senior citizens trained on the benefits of pet facilitated therapy. _____

Number acquiring pets as a result of training. _____

OBJECTIVE 3:

Develop volunteer recruitment activities which support volunteer programs to address the needs of urban communities.

Performance Goal 3:

Expand volunteerism recruitment programs and incentives to recruit a minimum of 100 new volunteers to support urban Extension programming efforts.

Outcome 3:

Increased access to volunteer assistance for urban program planning and implementation.

Baseline Measures:

Number of official volunteers during 1996.

Indicators:

Number of volunteerism recruitment activities conducted to support urban programming efforts. _____

Number of new volunteers recruited with an urban focus. _____

REFERENCES:

"Empowerment: A New Covenant with America's Communities." President Clinton's National Urban Policy Report, United States Department of Housing and Urban Development, Office of Policy Development and Research, 1995.

Kordesh, R. Irony and Hope in the Emerging Family Policies: A Case for Family Empowerment Associations. Institute for Policy Research and Evaluation, Graduate School of Public Policy and Administration, Pennsylvania State University, 1995.

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STATE GOAL 4:

Facilitate changes to improve urban environments and reduce the impact of environmental situations which threaten the safety and health of individuals, youth and families.

SITUATION:

Alabama, like all states across the nation, depends upon economically vital urban areas in order to thrive. The nation's economy is built upon the success of metropolitan areas. They account for 83 percent of the national income (Empowerment: A New Covenant with America's Communities, 1995). Unfortunately, the reverse is also true; declining central cities have an indirect impact upon us all because the decline can stifle growth and development of communities, regions, states and ultimately the nation.

More important, declining and unsafe central cities have a significant effect upon the families that dwell within. Community residents can not avoid the impact of the physical environment of their community. The general health and safety of an environment affects all individuals who live there, whether they are involved in other aspects of community life or not. Children and families who live in urban communities are particularly affected by air pollution, noise pollution, traffic problems, crime, violence and the lack of safe, healthy areas to play (Wireman, 1985).

Communities have a responsibility to provide safe, drug free and crime free environments for children and families to live and grow. The Alabama Kids Count Special Edition (1995) cited goals for all of Alabama's children including to: 1) live in a community that affirms their inherent value as members of the human family, and 2) grow up free from abuse, violence and the devastation of alcohol and other drugs. Despite these goals, disheartening statistics within the state show over 100,000 children living in distressed neighborhoods with high levels of poverty and increasing crime rates.

Of course, streets that are clean and safe areas in which to play are vital to the well-being of children (Wireman, 1985). But community environmental issues and concerns are much broader than that. The quality of the air we breathe is an environmental issue which poses human health concerns for the entire nation. Air pollution can cause respiratory diseases, heart disease, and cancer (Petit, 1995). Hence, pollution control is a serious issue for urban communities.

Additionally, over the past two decades there has been increasing concern that some segments of the population are at special risk for environmental threats. In February 1994, President Clinton issued Executive Order (EO) 12898, Federal Actions to Address Environmental Justice in Minority Populations and Low-Income Populations. Generally, environmental justice program efforts seek to ensure that limited resource and minority communities are not "unjustly dumped upon," or, more specifically, do not experience disproportionately high or adverse health or environmental impacts of programs, policies or activities within communities.

Real changes in the environment can not take place until community residents are prepared to provide broad input in environmental decision making. Additionally, each individual citizen must be prepared to make a conscious effort to minimize damage to enhance the environment whenever possible. Knowledge and understanding of environmental issues are essential tools for such in-depth involvement. People working together with agencies, such as the Alabama Cooperative Extension System, who share the goal of saving the environment and improving the living standards of families can make a difference.

OBJECTIVE 1:

Educate citizens to improve their practices in pollution control.

Performance Goal:

Enhance programming efforts in pollution control by conducting community workshops that will provide Alabama's citizens access to pollution education to an increase of 20% over the previous year's contacts.

Outcome:

Reduced pollution problems in Alabama's cities.

Baseline Measures:

Number of citizens involved during the previous year in pollution education workshops.

Indicators:

Number of citizens involved in pollution education workshops. _____

Percentage increase over last year's involvement. _____

Number reporting having gained knowledge about pollution control. _____

Number adopting practices. _____

OBJECTIVE 2:

Expand pest management programs to include home (interior) pest control.

Performance Goal:

Increase the number of home pest management programs by 10%.

Outcome:

Better control of pest infestations including roaches, rats, termites, etc., for families in urban communities.

Baseline Measures:

None at this time.

Indicators:

Number of cases of controlled pest infestation. _____

OBJECTIVE 3:

Partner with local and state agencies to train citizens in environmental law and environmental justice.

Performance Goal:

Fifteen percent (15%) of Alabama's communities will be prepared to initiate policies and procedures to respond to environmental law and environmental justice issues to protect the health and environment of citizens.

Outcome:

Citizens who are better prepared to respond to environmental law and environmental justice issues.

Baseline Measures:

None at this time.

Indicators:

Number of activities initiated by communities to intervene upon or prevent environmental injustice. _____

Number of public policies initiated by communities to intervene upon or prevent environmental injustice. _____

Number of fact sheets distributed. _____

Number of electronic media approaches used to convey information. _____

Number of other media approaches:

Number of workshops or seminars conducted. _____

Number of communities involved. _____

OBJECTIVE 4:

Improve the physical safety of urban environments.

Performance Goal:

Increase the number of programs designed to reduce community and family violence by 10%.

Outcome:

Reduced community and family violence.

Baseline Measures:

Existing reports on cases of community violence. _____

Indicators:

Number of programs implemented which were designed to reduce community violence. _____

Number of programs implemented which were designed to reduce family violence. _____

Number of communities involved. _____

Number of families involved. _____

Number of communities showing reduced violence. _____

Number of families reporting reduced family violence. _____

OBJECTIVE 5:

Help families to maintain or increase the value of personal property, enhance family satisfaction with home environments, and improve the general safety of homes through community renewal activities.

Performance Goal:

Promote community improvement activities through home improvement, self help and volunteer assistance programs.

Outcome:

Homes that are aesthetically appealing and physically safe.

Baseline Measures:

Property value of homes during previous year.

Indicators:

Number of families reporting enhanced satisfaction with home environment. _____

Number reporting increased safety features. _____

Estimated property value increases (average) . _____

REFERENCE:

"Alabama Kids Count 1995 Report," VOICES for Alabama's Children, Annie E. Casey Foundation, Birmingham, AL.

"Alabama Kids Count Special Edition, December 1995." VOICES for Alabama's Children, Annie E. Casey Foundation, Birmingham, AL.

Environmental Justice Plan. National Aeronautics and Space Administration, George C. Marshall Space Flight Center, Huntsville, Alabama, September, 1996.

Executive Order 12898, Federal Actions to Address Environmental Justice in Minority Populations and Low-Income Populations, Federal Register, Vol. 39, No. 32, February, 1994.

Wireman, P. Urban Neighborhoods, Networks and Families, Lexington, Massachusetts: Lexington Books, 1984.

Petit, J. and Gangloff, D. "People of the Urban Ecosystem" Urban Forests, December/January, 1995.

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STATE GOAL 5:

Employ an expanded conceptual understanding of Urban Agriculture to develop programming that addresses real issues of urban/rural interdependence.

SITUATION:

The field of agriculture has in years past conjured images of rural farmers growing large numbers of acreage in cotton and produce. But more process oriented thinking from a broader perspective gives new meaning to a 1990's definition of urban agriculture. Much of the demands for and use of farm products are within commercial marketing channels, and large percentages of farm products are actually processed and consumed by urban populations. Specifically, Urban Agriculture is defined by those activities and products for which the U.S. Department of Agriculture has statutory responsibility occurring within an urban area as defined by the U.S. Census Bureau, or in the immediately surrounding area. Included would be the production and processing of food, short of final serving; production, installation and usage of ornamental plants; control of plant and animal diseases; regulation of pesticide use; and supporting activities such as financial services, management consulting and product advertising. Examples of Urban Agriculture are production/sale within urban areas of fruit, vegetables, dairy products, meat, etc.; bakeries, malt producers, meat packing plants; production/use of ornamental plants, trees, shrubs, turf, and flowers; pesticide use in plant and animal production, as well as indoor and outdoor pest control. (USDA, 1993).

An accurate interpretation of the true meaning of Urban Agriculture gives impetus to a rural/urban interdependence programming concept. Further, the definition opens up tremendous Extension programming opportunities for urban community-based agriculture. An excellent example of a program which depicts a rural/urban relationship is described in The U.S. Department of Agriculture's Bulletin 685, "Nutrition, Eating for Good Health." The bulletin describes "gleaning programs." Gleaning programs are offered to agencies and cooperating farmers as an alternative to leaving unharvested crops in fields. According to statistics, presently approximately 20% of America's farm crops may be left in the fields unharvested because the produce may not meet market standards or there may be a shortage of labor, etc. Through gleaning or second harvest programs, limited resource individuals and families can take advantage of unharvested and discarded agricultural products from urban gardens, farmers, processors or retailers. The organized activity allows "volunteer gleaners" to collect unused and discarded food and provide it to the needy. The program also provides training in appropriate harvesting techniques as well as food processing and preserving.

Urban Extension: A National Agenda, a Report of the National Extension Urban Task Force, encourages programming which supports rural/urban interdependence. Considering the increasing urban population (approximately 67% nationwide), and the interaction of rural, urban, and even suburban communities, this thinking is logical. All Americans have common needs for food, clothing and shelter which are end products of the agricultural system. And, whether the focus is rural or urban agriculture, Extension's purpose is to provide practical education for all citizens- education which they can use to address critical issues that affect their lives. To meet this challenge, "Extension educators nationwide must join forces to support existing efforts in developing information, education, and demonstration programs that promote economically sound, socially acceptable, and environmentally friendly agricultural practices" (Strategic Directions of the Cooperative Extension System, 1993).

OBJECTIVE 1:

Collaborate with local government and businesses to develop green spaces within urban communities by creating walkways from alleys, building nature trails, reviving park spaces, etc.

Performance Goal:

Create new green spaces in a minimum of 5% of the state's urban counties.

Outcome:

Esthetically appealing urban environments which promote physical and psychological health.

Baseline Measure:

Number of green spaces established in Alabama communities during previous year.

Indicators:

Number of communities developing green spaces. _____

Number of local agencies collaborating. _____

OBJECTIVE 2:

Expand Master Gardening follow-through programs.

Performance Goal

Fifteen percent (15%) of Master Gardening follow-through programs will initiate activities that are supportive of urban community efforts to create green spaces.

Outcome:

Esthetically appealing urban environments which promote physical and psychological health.

Baseline Measures:

Existing Master Gardener follow-through programs which support urban community efforts to create green spaces.

Indicators:

Number of Master Gardener follow-through programs which support urban community efforts to create green space. _____

OBJECTIVE 3:

Partner with local markets to educate consumers on making appropriate meat and produce choices in urban markets through consumer information "pick (buy) of the week programs"

Performance Goal:

Collaborate with local markets and T.V. stations to deliver weekly consumer education programs on the "pick (buy) of the week"¿ in a minimum of 15% of Alabama's communities.

Outcome:

Consumers can make more informed decisions about produce and meat buys.

Baseline Measure:

Number of communities serviced with "pick of the week" programs during the previous year.

Indicators:

Number of communities in which consumer education programs on the "pick (buy) of the week" were delivered. _____

Number of positive responses (Requests) from consumers. _____

Estimated dollars saved (weekly) . _____

OBJECTIVE 4:

Conduct "gleaning" or second harvest programs to increase the access of limited resource families to an affordable food supply.

Performance Goal:

Fifteen percent (15%) of Alabama's counties will initiate gleaning projects to increase the access of limited resource families to an affordable food supply.

Outcome:

Increased access to an affordable food supply for Alabama families.

Baseline Measures:

Number of counties involved in gleaning projects during previous year.

Indicators:

Number of counties involved in gleaning projects during present year. _____

Number of gleaning projects initiated. _____

Number of families involved in gleaning programs. _____

Estimated value of gleaned food products. _____

Number of families benefiting from gleaning projects. _____

OBJECTIVE 5:

Implement an annual conference designed to educate individuals, families, agencies, communities, stakeholders and organizations on the rural/urban interdependence concept.

Performance Goal:

Twenty-five percent (25%) of the state's counties will be involved in a rural/urban conference which focuses on the inter-relatedness of rural and urban systems, including the agricultural system.

Outcome:

Citizens who are more informed on how rural and urban systems must work together to address needs of communities.

Baseline Measures:

Counties involved in rural/urban interdependence conferences during previous year.

Indicator:

Number of counties involved in annual rural/urban conference. _____

REFERENCES:

Nutrition, Eating for Good Health, United States Department of Agriculture, Agriculture Information Bulletin 685, 1992.

"Strategic Directions of the Cooperative Extension System." Extension Service, U.S. Department of Agriculture, Extension Committee on Organization and Policy, 1993.

Current National Initiatives, "Sustainable Agriculture," Cooperative Extension System, USDA, November, 1993.

"Urban Extension: A National Agenda." A Report of the National Extension Urban Task Force, United States Department of Agriculture, Cooperative State Research, Education, and Extension Service, May 1996.

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STATE GOAL 6:

Create expanded access to public information through independent systems for information referral and retrieval

SITUATION:

As we approach the year 2000 Extension systems across the nation are faced with an ultimatum: "Extension must transform, be transformed or perish" (Strategic Directions for the Future of the Cooperative Extension System, USDA). Tendencies to resist change and attempts to address new and emerging needs utilizing old techniques and models place restrictions on program effectiveness. Essentially, solutions to today's problems, critical issues and concerns lie with Extension professionals who are prepared to meet challenges head on with creative, research-based and innovative problem-solving.

In his executive order for setting customer service standards, President Clinton wrote, "putting people first means ensuring that the Federal Government provides the highest quality service possible to the American people" (The White House, Office of the Press Secretary, September 11, 1993). In line with this charge, the Strategic Directions of the Cooperative Extension System (1993) outlines a vision for Extension as a future-oriented, self renewing, national educational network employing an interactive education process with state-of-the-art technology and creatively delivering programs that are at the cutting edge of critical issues. These programs must reflect excellence, are interdisciplinary in nature, have a strong disciplinary base and make a positive difference in people's lives.

In accordance with the national vision, a primary goal for the Alabama Cooperative Extension System's new nontraditional programs is to reach new audiences, in new ways, with new partners, utilizing new technology.

OBJECTIVE 1:

Increase citizens' access to Extension resources.

Performance Goal:

Utilize interactive computer technology, hotlines, e-mail, info-stands, etc. to establish independent information dissemination centers in a minimum of 5% of the state's counties.

Outcome:

Citizens have increased access to Extension resources.

Baseline Measure:

Existing interactive computer information dissemination centers.

Existing hotlines.

Existing info-stands at strategic sites.

Indicators:

Number of interactive computer information dissemination centers established. _____

Number of e-mail information disseminations to citizens. _____

Number of info-stands established at strategic sites. _____

Number of programs supported by hotlines. _____

OBJECTIVE 2:

Establish an urban and new nontraditional programs resource "outreach" laboratory.

Performance Goal :

Compile a directory of resources available within the System to address urban priority needs.

Outcome:

Educators have access to resources to support educational activities in urban communities.

Baseline Measure:

Number of existing resource directories available within the System to address urban priority needs.

Indicators:

Number of urban resource entries made. _____

Number of requests for urban resource information. _____


REFERENCES

"Environmental Justice Plan." National Aeronautics and Space Administration, George C. Marshall Space Flight Center, Huntsville, Alabama, September, 1996.

"Setting Customer Service Standards." Executive Order, The White House, Office of the Press Secretary, September, 1993.

"Strategic Directions for the Future of the Cooperative Extension System." Extension Service U.S. Department of Agriculture, Extension Committee on Organization and Policy, 1993.

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Page was last updated:
14 May 2003