Effective violence prevention programs often rely on coalitions that share a common vision and pursue a common goal. However, coalitions often vary in terms of their functioning. Poorly functioning coalitions can have a dramatic impact on program process and outcome evaluation findings. The purpose of this presentation is to review existing measures of coalition functioning and to provide a case study of coalition functioning in Sarasota County, Florida. Sarasota Against Violence (SAVE) interventions will address the individual, relationship, community and societal causes of violence and all aim to prevent violence before it occurs, immediately after, or provide long-term care and help to victims in an effort to avoid additional violent encounters. To implement SAVE and achieve these outcomes, the underlying SAVE coalition must demonstrate high levels of functioning. To assess and improve, where needed, coalition functioning, the Wilder Collaboration Factors Inventory, a reliable and valid measure of coalition functioning, will be administered to steering committee members on a quarterly basis through the life of the SAVE grant. The Wilder Collaboration Factors Inventory among others will be recommended as a formative evaluation tool for use in assessing group functioning (e.g., communication, leadership, etc.) that can be used for program improvement purposes.
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