All In For Youth: Evaluating a Collaborative Model of Support for Children, Youth and Families in Inner-City Edmonton Schools

Principal Investigator: Jason Daniels (CUP)
Co-investigator: Karen Edwards (CUP)
Research Team: Teresa Mejia, Nicholas Lesyk
Funder: United Way of the Alberta Capital Region
Duration: August 2016 to Present

The All in For Youth (AIFY) initiative is a school-based, wraparound model of social support service delivery for children, youth, and families who are experiencing vulnerability in their school communities. The overal objective of AIFY is to support the overall wellbeing of students and their families, so students can achieve success in their schooling and families can thrive. These AIFY wraparound supports include student mentoring, mental health supports, family supports, nutrition support, success coaching, and out of school care. Since 2016, five inner-city schools in Edmonton (spanning elementary to high school) have adopted and integrated the full AIFY model of support into their school communities.

AIFY was developed by a collaborative team of partners, including Boys and Girls Clubs Big Brothers Big Sisters of Edmonton and Area, The City of Edmonton, e4c, Edmonton Catholic School District, Edmonton Public Schools, The Edmonton Community Foundation, The Family Centre, The Mental Health Foundation, REACH Edmonton, and the United Way of the Alberta Capital Region.

Since 2016, CUP has been supporting the annual evaluation of the AIFY initiative. The aim of the evaluation is to gain valuable insights into the AIFY model of support, when it comes to its effectiveness and its impact on the lives of students and families in the AIFY school communities. We have taken a developmental and community based participatory research approach to the evlaution and the AIFY partners are active participants in their evaluation. The AIFY partners help inform evaluation planning, study design, data collection, data interpretation, and dissemination strategies. The evaluation also captures the perspectives of all stakeholder groups involved (e.g., students, families, teachers, principals, agency staff, agency managers and supervisors, AIFY partners, community partners) through interviews, focus groups, and stakeholder surveys. We also use secondary quantitative data from the participating school Districts and service delivery agencies to contextualize and support the evaluation data we collect from stakeholders (e.g., school demographic data, measures of student resiliency, data about service use). We are currently finishing the 4th year of evaluation and have started to work with the AIFY partners to develop the focus and scope of the Year 5 evaluation.

Read the Year 3 AIFY Evaluation Report here 

Read the Year 4 AIFY Evaluation Report here