Strategic Plan 2011-2015 CNCS' primary role is to provide critical resources and leadership to support local initiatives that tackle community challenges. We do this by directing resources to those organizations and community programs that have proven to be effective in using service at the local level to address the key priorities of Disaster Services, Economic Opportunity, Education, Environmental Stewardship, Healthy Futures, and Veterans and Military Families. We implement direct service programs, make grants, provide capacity-building and support to nonprofits, conduct research and evaluation to inform best practices, provide thought leadership, and foster collaboration with other federal agencies, foundations, community organizations, and state, local and tribal governments. CNCS adds further value through our focus on the quality of the service participant's experience and continued engagement. Successive Administrations of both parties have recognized the importance of volunteers in addressing key issues and made investments in national service to build the capacity of America's voluntary sector. Most recently in April 2009, President Barack Obama signed into law the Serve America Act, which amended the national service laws to reauthorize CNCS and expand its scope and programs. This landmark bill, which passed with bipartisan support, is the foundation for our Strategic Plan. The legislation authorizes CNCS to focus on key issues, expand opportunities to serve, build the capacity of individuals, nonprofits and communities, and encourage innovative approaches to addressing community challenges. Corporation for National and Community Service CNCS _38872bf7-72b0-4fa4-84ec-c713729c43b8 We are the federal agency that provides pathways and opportunities for Americans to engage in their communities. Our mission is to improve lives, strengthen communities and foster civic engagement through service and volunteering. CNCS Programs Our work is carried out through the following programs that engage people from all communities and of all ages in service and volunteering -- from one-day or occasional volunteering to an intensive year-long commitment. Senior Corps Senior Corps consists of three programs -- RSVP, Foster Grandparent Program (FGP) and Senior Companion Program (SCP) -- that use the experience, skills and talents of more than 450,000 volunteers age 55 and older to serve at-risk youth, help seniors live independently and meet other community needs. Senior Corps volunteers serve through more than 65,000 local nonprofits, public agencies, faith- based and other community organizations. AmeriCorps AmeriCorps provides opportunities for more than 80,000 Americans each year to provide intensive results-driven service to respond to natural disasters, expand economic opportunity, strengthen education, protect the environment, enable access to health services, support veterans and military families, and meet other critical needs. AmeriCorps members serve in thousands of nonprofit, faith-based and other local organizations through three programs: AmeriCorps State and National, AmeriCorps VISTA (Volunteers In Service To America) and AmeriCorps NCCC (National Civilian Community Corps). AmeriCorps members "and the nearly three million volunteers they recruit and supervise "tutor and mentor youth, build affordable housing, operate afterschool programs, help veterans readjust to civilian life, and help communities respond to disasters. Learn and Serve America Learn and Serve America provides opportunities for more than 1.3 million students every year to strengthen communities, enhance education and develop an enduring ethic of service for youth. We fund state education agencies, K-12 schools, community-based organizations, Indian tribes and U. S. territories, and institutions of higher education to develop, support and sustain high quality service-learning programs. This teaching and learning strategy integrates community service with classroom learning, enriching academic experiences and promoting civic engagement. Social Innovation Fund The Social Innovation Fund (SIF) targets public and private dollars to expand effective solutions across three issue areas: Economic Opportunity, Healthy Futures and Youth Development. The SIF is a competitive grant program that invests in innovative solutions with evidence of impact and that are ready to grow to meet the needs of more communities. This work will create a catalog of evidence- based approaches that can be replicated in communities across the country. Volunteer Generation Fund The Volunteer Generation Fund strengthens the role of volunteers in tackling pressing problems by expanding the capacity of state service commissions and volunteer connector organizations to recruit, manage, support and retain individuals to serve in high-quality volunteer assignments. Call to Service The Call to Service engages citizens in service opportunities that expand the impact of community organizations and encourage volunteers to develop their own "do-it-yourself" projects. Each year, annual service days, such as the MLK Day of Service and the 9/11 National Day of Remembrance and Service, mobilize millions of Americans to become active participants in community solutions. Intermediary Organizations Special Focus: Intermediary Organizations -- those that provide sub-grants to and place service participants with other organizations -- have always been a critical part of the national service network. We work with an extensive network of intermediaries including state service commissions, state education agencies, consortia of higher education institutions and other regional and national organizations. They provide many faith-based and community-based organizations from small towns and rural communities with access to infrastructure support and national service resources, thereby helping these organizations better meet needs in their communities. Some intermediaries, due to their responsiveness to local needs, are multi-focused and address a variety of community needs from education to economic opportunity to disaster services. Intermediaries build the capacity of nonprofits and local education agencies to expand and improve services, foster collaboration among organizations, recruit volunteers, and engage community members as partners in creating sustainable solutions to local problems. Many intermediaries also invest in developing the leadership and life skills of service participants. As intermediaries, state service commissions play an important role in capacity building, infrastructure development, program development, and training and technical assistance for service and volunteering programs in their states. They enhance service and volunteering in their states through the creation of a state service plan. These plans are developed through an open and public process that provides for maximum participation and input from diverse stakeholders resulting in improved coordination and effectiveness of federal, state and local resources. These key functions improve community outcomes. Intermediaries also play a critical role in the SIF. In order to identify those community-based organizations with the greatest potential for generating increased impact, help them strengthen their evidence base, and proactively support the growth of their work in order to significantly improve the lives of more people in more economically disadvantaged communities, the SIF relies on intermediaries with strong skills and track records of success to do the critical work of selecting, validating and growing high-impact nonprofit organizations. Given their distinct roles, collaboration with intermediary organizations is necessary to achieve both our community impact and participant experience goals. CNCS is working with our intermediary grantees and sponsors to develop performance measures that adequately capture their impact in communities and on service participants. Rural Communities Special Focus: Rural Communities -- Investment in community solutions is central to our Strategic Plan. One of our top priorities is to ensure that national service reaches all kinds of communities, including those in rural areas. National service provides the opportunity for people from rural communities to get involved in community solutions while reaping the benefits of service. In particular, state service commissions are instrumental in ensuring that national service reaches communities in rural areas. The needs of rural communities align with the Disaster Services, Economic Opportunity, Education, Environmental Stewardship, Healthy Futures, and Veterans and Military Families priorities discussed in this Plan. They are also addressed through all of CNCS' programs. In recent years, AmeriCorps has provided increasing grants to small and rural states such as Kansas, Mississippi, Iowa and Utah, all of which received an average increase of 51 percent in their state formula grant allocations in the AmeriCorps State and National program in FY 2010. Also, 67 percent of grantees that self-identified as having a rural programming focus received funding. 29 United Way of Northwest Georgia supports nine VISTA members who participate in activities related to early childhood education, parent enrichment, community-based educational opportunities, and adult assisted learning. VISTA members assist with helping maintain critical services that promote literacy, improve health and human services, and increase housing and supportive housing initiatives in rural counties in Northwest Georgia, specifically Whitfield, Murray, Gilmer, Pickens and Fannin Counties. The Nevada Rural Counties RSVP annually engages over 900 volunteers in rural Nevada to provide more than 160,000 hours of volunteer service to over 160 public and nonprofit community agencies and to Nevada's elderly population. The activities of RSVP volunteers are far-ranging, from managing food distribution efforts to providing transportation services for seniors to offering respite for 24/7 care providers. Many of these programs provide opportunities for residents in rural communities to become national service participants and therefore benefit from the economic opportunity and educational benefits of service while giving back to their communities. 13044c95-baaa-494e-9b71-fee435799cef To improve lives, strengthen communities and foster civic engagement through service and volunteering. d9f5b5c0-2686-46f1-b6ee-11d8f45df07b Community Solutions Core Principle #1: Identify and invest in community solutions. CNCS believes that many of the best solutions come from outside Washington, D.C., where people are finding ways to solve problems in their communities. CNCS program participants serve through more than 70,000 organizations, from national nonprofits to small faith-based and community groups. In 2010 they mobilized more than 3.5 million volunteers to engage in results-driven service for these organizations. We work closely with state service commissions to support citizen-centered community solutions. For example, at least 35.3 percent of AmeriCorps State and National funds go to states through formula funds and an additional 30 percent is awarded through a national competition. We also work with national organizations, state education agencies and Indian tribes to identify and invest in local programs with place-based strategies that deliver tangible and measurable outcomes to the local community as well as service participants. Service Core Principle #2: Engage Americans in service. By engaging millions of Americans in service and volunteering, CNCS is strengthening civic engagement and democratic participation and building a diverse, committed network of engaged citizens. Through the AmeriCorps programs, individuals embark on a pathway to opportunity that engages them in year-long projects where they learn valuable skills, earn money for education and chart a course of lifelong citizen engagement. A longitudinal study has suggested that AmeriCorps alumni are more likely to be civically engaged; to go into public service careers such as teaching, public safety, social work and military service; and to volunteer in their communities. The skills participants gain include both those specific to their service as well as general skills of leadership and problem-solving. Since 1994, AmeriCorps members have earned more than $2 billion in Segal AmeriCorps Education Awards for training, to help pay for college or to pay back student loans. Engaging Americans in service enables individuals to take action in their communities and contribute to solutions while developing skills and accessing new opportunities. Engagement Volunteering Evidence Core Principle #3: Support evidence-based programs. With guidance from Congress through the Serve America Act, we are targeting our programming to demonstrate impact on critical community issues and to build on the base of effective national service programming. By understanding how community solutions can be effective in responding to community needs -- and where national service can make the biggest difference -- CNCS can direct resources to support the most effective programs and encourage their growth and expansion to those areas that are under-resourced, such as rural and Native American communities. We continue to work with the national service network to establish a collective understanding of what works and why, based on evidence from well-designed and well-implemented experimental or quasi-experimental studies that demonstrate impact. Where appropriate, we also work to reproduce these evidence-based approaches and expand them to other communities. For example, the SIF awards grants to and works with intermediaries to direct resources to community-based nonprofit organizations that can validate and grow promising approaches to challenges facing local communities. Public-Private Partnerships Core Principle #4: Leverage public-private partnerships. National service was established as a public-private partnership, encouraging investment in the form of matching funds and other resources from businesses, foundations and state and local agencies. For example, AmeriCorps VISTA members help nonprofits expand services, raise funds, develop new collaborations, measure impact, and create innovative and sustainable programs. In 2010, we enabled grantees, sponsors and projects to leverage $800 million in funds and in-kind donations. 14 These resources "in addition to CNCS grants, training and research" help nonprofit, faith-based and community organizations across the nation expand their reach and better achieve their missions. We also encourage collaboration among organizations in order to reduce duplication of effort and ensure more effective approaches to solving complex problems. The nation is facing significant challenges and as Americans look for ways to give back, CNCS is more critical than ever. These core principles complement our specific strategies, which together inform how we will accomplish our strategic goals. Community Needs Increase the impact of national service on community needs in communities served by CNCS-supported programs ae5a3beb-cae9-4e8c-9936-ffb04480c96d 1 We will continue to focus on opportunities where national service can make the greatest difference in communities across the country. The Serve America Act amended the national service laws and expected CNCS to strengthen the service network and address areas of need that CNCS has the capacity to address, including Disaster Services, Economic Opportunity, Education, Environmental Stewardship, Healthy Futures, and Veterans and Military Families. Education Provide, support and/or facilitate access to services and resources that contribute to improved educational outcomes for economically disadvantaged people, especially children. e85340cf-583a-45c3-8acd-b18d01b5226f 1.1 Many economically disadvantaged children and youth have difficulty succeeding in school. The dropout process begins with young children entering school ill-prepared, and too many are unable to catch up and perform at grade level. With the right support, all children can succeed. Engaging children in the early years and throughout their academic career helps ensure more children, youth and adults develop essential skills and an appreciation for learning. Our education strategy is grounded in this challenge and in our unique role as a service provider and capacity-builder for schools and communities. When we examine the education interventions that lead to the best education outcomes for students in most need -- increased instructional time, family involvement, smaller student-teacher ratios, better teachers -- we can identify a common element. These kinds of policies promote personal attention by caring, capable adults devoting time and attention to a student. Personal attention from caring and capable adults is the reason we have a remarkable opportunity to improve education outcomes for students. Well-implemented national service-supported efforts can lead to critical outcomes such as improved attendance, improved engagement in coursework, improved course completion, performance at grade level, performance on standardized tests, high school graduation, and persistence in college and university. Academic achievement -- performance on standardized tests, high school or college graduation -- is premised on strong academic engagement -- high levels of attendance, positive behavior in class, or on-time course completion. Our education programs support both academic achievement and engagement, but the large majority of our education grants and expertise are focused on engagement. Thus, we don't propose to solve the dropout crisis, but we do propose to help strategically address what precipitates it. A chart outlining the education focus area strategy can be found in the Appendix. Below is an overview of our objectives, strategies and performance measures. 92c77b7a-7550-4ec7-a79f-e3c9f1f72f6b School Readiness Improve school readiness for economically disadvantaged young children. 9f9ea396-df1e-4821-99dc-d418897c6465 1.1.1 Economically Disadvantaged Children Social & Emotional Development Gains Percentage of Children Unspecified TBD Percent of children demonstrating gains in school readiness in terms of social and emotional development. Literacy Skills Percentage of Children Unspecified TBD Percent of children demonstrating gains in school readiness in terms of literacy skills. Math Skills Percentage of Children Unspecified TBD Percent of children demonstrating gains in school readiness in terms of numeracy (math) skills. Activities Focus funding activities and other resources on programs in which CNCS-supported members, participants and volunteers develop or engage in proven or promising activities that include teaching, tutoring and/or the provision of education-related supportive services for children or their families that improve school readiness. 295f66c5-5819-4e3f-9b24-afff961dd31f 2fc45ed6-947f-4de3-936d-750fe92054d6 Educational & Behavioral Outcomes Improve educational and behavioral outcomes of students in low-achieving elementary, middle and high schools. 6baeef76-8c15-42cd-882f-9e608a230877 1.1.2 Students in Low-Achieving Schools Academic Performance Improvement Percentage of Students Unspecified TBD Percent of students served by or serving in CNCS- supported programs who demonstrate improved academic performance (including the percent meeting state proficiency levels in reading and math or whose scores on state standardized tests improved). Improved Academic Engagement Percentage of Students Unspecified TBD Percent of students served by CNCS-supported programs, or engaged in CNCS-supported service-learning, who demonstrate improved academic engagement. Learning & Grade-Level Success Focus funding and other resources on programs in which CNCS-supported members, participants and volunteers engage in proven or promising activities intended to improve learning and grade-level success in low-achieving schools, such as teaching, tutoring and/or mentoring of students; providing supportive services to assist staff; providing extended learning programs in cooperation with school systems (such as after school and summer learning); or providing other types of school improvement support to school systems a0a1c320-5d32-49fb-b858-69f6edec995b Low-Achieving Schools 8096dc34-236e-4147-ae81-0b5828b06a8a Service Learning Focus funding and other resources on programs in which CNCS-supported members, participants and volunteers engage in high quality service-learning projects in low-achieving schools 8a569c0f-0bb5-4a20-8b66-dc9fb1e6831f Low-Achieving Schools 32140b18-1f09-49ed-bd5a-4d1117a11e22 Teachers in Low-Achieving Schools Focus funding and other resources on programs in which CNCS provides assistance to higher education institutions and alternative certification programs to increase the number of teachers or teaching aids working in low-achieving schools or otherwise provide assistance to community-based learning centers in high poverty communities 2011a37c-c976-4486-960f-7c5d8a662083 Low-Achieving Schools Teachers Community-Based Learning Centers High Poverty Communities f95538e0-74f1-456f-a178-388b63437193 Capacity Building Focus funding and other resources on programs in which CNCS-supported members, participants and volunteers provide proven or promising capacity- building services for state and local education agencies or community-based learning centers ef93a67e-82ae-48bd-8250-c51d995ff630 State Education Agencies Local Education Agencies Community-Based Learning Centers 293e46d7-c03b-4a27-9be7-8d7a02bb5a89 Preparation Improve the preparation for, and prospects of success in, post-secondary education institutions for economically disadvantaged students. 4560f048-b81a-4653-bf49-e76253065aff 1.1.3 Economically Disadvantaged Students Counseling & Guidance Received Percentage of Students Unspecified TBD Percent of students served by CNCS-supported members, participants and volunteers, or serving in CNCS-supported programs, who received counseling and guidance associated with skills needed for college preparation and success. Enrollment in Postsecondary Institution Percentage of Students Unspecified TBD Percent of students served by CNCS-supported members, participants and volunteers who applied for and enrolled in a postsecondary institution. Continuation to a Second Year of Post-Secondary Education Percentage of Students Unspecified TBD Percent of students served by CNCS-supported members, participants and volunteers who continued to a second year of post-secondary education. Counseling, Academic, Enrollment & Retention Activities Focus funding activities and other resources on those programs in which CNCS-supported members, participants and volunteers engage in proven and promising counseling, academic, enrollment and retention support activities for economically disadvantaged students. fd7c2fe3-4559-4967-a1be-c68a5daca7b7 Economically Disadvantaged Students bda0be67-a475-46ee-955d-c8d8a4d50942 Veterans & Military Families Demonstrate the potential for CNCS-supported national service interventions to 1) positively impact the quality of life of veterans and 2) improve military family strength. 492ca0bf-598b-4bf5-b8bf-8f63117c6664 1.2 Veterans Military Families Over the next five years, we will seek to expand national service interventions that improve the quality of life of veterans and military family strength. We will invest in emerging and established programs to address the needs of veterans and military families. We will focus efforts on learning where service-based programs have the greatest potential to improve military family strength and facilitate the reintegration of service members back into civilian life. Our focus includes programs that engage veterans and military family members in service (described in Goal #2), as well as those that provide service to this important population. Engaging veterans and military family members in programs that serve other veteran and military family members has the potential to be an effective approach. Veterans and military family members prefer to receive information about services from friends, family and neighbors. There is extensive research that indicates peers delivering social and mental health services to other peers results in better outcomes. Research suggests that peers are: 1) more able to empathize with other consumers, 2) more able to help them access services, 3) more able to appreciate other consumers' strengths, and 4) more able to be tolerant, patient and responsive to consumers' needs and desires. Finally, the use of peers in a mental health setting has been associated with improvement in illness management, larger social support networks, enhanced self-esteem and social functioning, improvement in skill deficits and use of available resources to meet needs, and lower service costs overall. Based on our work, CNCS will refine a theory of change and a logic model to inform our veterans and military families strategy in 2013. In 2014-2015, we will focus our work in implementing this strategy. A chart outlining the veterans and military families focus area strategy can be found in the Appendix. Below is an overview of our objectives, strategies and performance measures. a6e77ccc-8db7-459f-878e-ea70bcbac875 Number Served Increase the number of veterans and military service members and their families served by CNCS-supported programs. b277af24-399e-423e-8355-7a95a086a534 1.2.1 Veterans Military Service Members Families of Veterans Families of Military Service Members Members & Families Served Number Unspecified TBD Number of veterans and military service members and their family members who are served by CNCS-supported programs. Information & Technical Assistance CNCS will provide information and technical assistance that encourage grantees and sponsors to develop established program responses tailored to veterans and military service members and their families. 6802d9a9-1121-4466-974c-0a2f7fee8974 a9f15caf-fea9-4a43-8d5b-893ac74bbf3b Innovative Approaches CNCS will encourage the national service network to consider and apply for support to implement and test innovative approaches that will benefit veterans and military service members and their families, particularly in rural and underserved areas. 024a738f-e211-401c-a326-89c56714ec81 240df71f-746b-448e-9c39-20f8660dad99 Activities CNCS-supported members, participants and volunteers will engage in or develop proven or promising activities that provide, support and/or facilitate veterans and military service members and their families access to: Services/benefits to which they are entitled; Workforce development resources and services (e.g., financial, computer and job-search and workforce skills training or job placement programs); - Services that improve educational attainment (e.g., mentoring, tutoring, peer-to-peer counseling); Safe, affordable housing; and Other quality-of-life improvements. 484d729e-c9ae-44d8-926e-9f124f1fda7a 1f251591-2a1c-4937-b06f-dcd415a16c16 Satisfaction, Meaning & Opportunity Strengthen national service so that participants engaged in CNCS-supported programs consistently find satisfaction, meaning and opportunity 0ee48823-7e53-4bea-9352-8c0cc763170f 2 National Service Participants We will strengthen and enhance the national service experience so that we can continue to offer a unique combination of professional, educational and life benefits to service participants. We will continue to expand our reach to include more Americans of diverse backgrounds so that they can take full advantage of the distinct benefits of service and develop a sustained commitment to civic engagement and national service. Moreover, by engaging diverse citizens who possess a wide range of cultural competencies, we will achieve greater impact on community challenges. In order to accomplish this goal, we have established the following objectives ... In order to achieve the goal of expanding the opportunity to serve and strengthening the CNCS participant experience, CNCS will employ two overarching strategies: a) An outreach strategy that involves: * Increasing applications from rural and underserved communities for national service programs; * Engaging the national service network in knowledge sharing about best practices for ensuring that participants find satisfaction, meaning and opportunity; * Forming partnerships with organizations in the national service network that are working in alignment with our goals; and * Connecting national service participants engaged in programs to each other to enhance the participant experience. b) A targeted funding strategy that involves: * Identifying, sharing and supporting the program models that best accomplish our goals in strengthening the participant experience or expanding the opportunity to serve. Opportunities Make CNCS-supported national service opportunities accessible and attractive to Americans of all backgrounds. 2d59ab10-ae73-493f-8d69-cd22047b02b7 2.1 Americans Members of Underrepresented Populations Percentage of Participants Unspecified TBD Percent of CNCS-supported participants who are members of underrepresented populations. Engagement in Providing Services Number of Veterans & Military Family Members Unspecified TBD Number of veterans and military family members engaged in providing services through CNCS- supported programs. Prioritization Prioritize funding to organizations that seek to recruit and engage traditionally underrepresented populations in service. c3547368-3581-4c8d-b51f-5361c250ee48 2.1.1 Underrepresented Populations We will prioritize funding through our grant competition processes to ensure that grantees and sponsors are provided incentives to engage underrepresented populations that may require innovative recruitment, training and retention strategies. b46976da-cb4e-4eee-8919-89b0a531143e Grant Applicants Strengthen outreach and technical assistance efforts to ensure an expanded pool of grant applicants proposing specific programs and strategies that engage underrepresented populations in service to their communities. 3a77714e-1b00-46a9-9937-a4a592efb947 2.1.2 Grant Applicants 52634179-050e-4e23-86ae-d734950239e8 Collaboration Conduct outreach to encourage existing CNCS- supported programs to collaborate with organizations with depth of experience in serving veterans, military service members and their families and/or traditionally underrepresented populations. ac6f4a1a-6d3e-4e52-bfab-3b4f0239982e 2.1.3 4461ddff-3689-48bb-bd53-310659a138c2 Partnerships Explore partnerships with other federal agencies that work directly with veterans, military families and Veterans Serving Organizations (VSOs). 808cd23b-9583-4d83-aace-4e15d5567ee3 2.1.4 Veterans Serving Organizations (VSOs) 1db80119-bf2d-4d02-905b-dd7ed34e9544 Meaning & Engagement CNCS-supported participants find meaning in their service experience and remain engaged in their communities. c17d9068-e526-4053-96d6-feb516138afa 2.2 ebeda2b7-bd0b-4a19-9512-903b504e60ce Experience CNCS-supported participants have a high quality service experience. 8177f60d-c7a7-48b5-8fc8-60e28c92e91f 2.3 fd3e2dcb-3ce5-4fc8-bab4-d00a8f951334 Growth CNCS-supported participants find professional, educational or civic growth opportunities in their service experience. 67e3bf52-6d8f-4ddd-a9dc-eb362ad5a594 2.4 Strategies (for Objectives 2-4): * Collect best practices and promising program models that provide the "best in class" in terms of understanding and distinguishing "meaningful" and "satisfactory" participant experiences. * Disseminate that knowledge to the national service network so that it can continue to improve the service experience it provides to CNCS-supported participants. * Continue to study CNCS-supported participant satisfaction and develop a solid baseline measure for it. Awareness Percentage of Participants Unspecified TBD Percent of CNCS-supported participants who are aware of community needs and community driven solutions. Connection to the National Service Community Percentage of Participants Unspecified TBD Percent of CNCS-supported participants who report that they are connected to the national service community. Service Experience Satisfaction Percentage of Participants Unspecified TBD Percent of CNCS-supported participants who report that they are satisfied with their service experience. Skill Gains Reported Percentage of Participants Unspecified TBD Percent of CNCS-supported participants who report gaining skills they can apply to future educational or professional endeavors. Health Benefits CNCS-supported participants age 55 and older and veterans experience health benefits associated with service. 997a45f1-f24f-416a-beaf-11fe900569ff 2.5 CNCS-Supported Participants Age 55 & Older CNCS-Supported Veterans Psychosocial Health Benefits Reported Percentage of Participants Unspecified TBD Percent of CNCS-supported participants 55 and older, or veterans, who report psychosocial health benefits associated with service. Impact Measurement CNCS will measure the impact of service on veterans as well as participants age 55 and older, including Senior Corps and encore volunteers. 76ac82cd-75bb-46ee-885c-3c289c7af92c 2.5.1 Veterans Participants Age 55 & Older Senior Corps Volunteers Encore Volunteers The national service laws call for the inclusion of older adults in service. Congress set a goal that 10 percent of AmeriCorps competitive funding should support encore service programs. CNCS seeks to meet that 10 percent target and encourages programs that engage a significant number of participants age 55 or older to apply. As we continue to engage veterans and older adults in service, we will measure the psychosocial health impacts that they experience. 7c67baaf-51c4-4730-8e27-0c09cb064f78 Value Maximize the value we add to grantees, partners and participants a39bb96e-0277-4fdb-830d-fe1110694543 3 Grantees Partners Participants We will strengthen the collective capacity of CNCS and the national service network to measure performance and conduct rigorous evaluations of program impacts. In order to maximize the value we add to grantees, partners and participants, we will focus on three interrelated objectives ... Measurement Build on the knowledge base of best practices and support efforts to measure results. 19bc0277-8183-4cd7-9c99-09f01330fbb5 3.1 Performance Measurement Opt In Percent of Grantees & Sponsors Unspecified TBD Percent of grantees and sponsors that opt into performance measures who participated in a specific capacity building activity. Research & Evaluation Conduct research and evaluation activities to build knowledge in three specific areas: How national service delivers effective solutions to community problems; How engagement in national service programs and projects delivers benefits to participants; and How to improve CNCS' effectiveness. 963fa46c-216f-4dac-a6ec-923913b210a9 3.1.1 e1400e16-1a84-4f05-8421-e774679a2b67 Learning & Thought Leadership Work with the national service network to develop targeted materials that will facilitate application of learning and thought leadership, specifically in the following content areas: Best practices in using service in the six focus areas; Performance management and measurement practices aligned with CNCS performance measures; and Best practices in maximizing participant impact. 5caeda52-b2f8-46d8-91ea-d83b4d9d8a08 3.1.2 090acc1f-ba29-4492-8b95-74072fd80a1a Dissemination Disseminate thought leadership and capacity building tools, publications and reports to those who have the potential to integrate service into community solutions and achieve results in the six focus areas (i.e., state service commissions, nonprofit leaders, policy makers, federal agencies and other actors). 95687698-f6eb-45fd-9315-5719ec15ec64 3.1.3 Depending on the content area and the targeted audience, the kinds of methods we might use include: Website and media outlets (e.g., online courses, blogs and facilitated learning communities); The National Conference on Volunteering and Service; Meetings or convenings; and Articles and reports. 7d0e137e-9514-4a82-8e5e-fceee3a21c37 Outcome/Impact Evaluation Improve organizational capacity to conduct rigorous evaluations of our programs to measure outcomes and/or impact. 87049096-c333-4aa2-b36c-530bb16c1ef4 3.2 While this objective and measures are specific to the SIF, in the future we plan to use the experience and knowledge gained through this work to disseminate best practices and support across all our programs to enhance evaluation capacity... Evalutations Implemented Percent of Organizations Unspecified TBD Percent of organizations that implement evaluations that demonstrate stronger evidence of program effectiveness than in the year prior to receiving CNCS funding. Evaluation Require evaluation as a prerequisite to funding allocations 04071b9c-784f-4f88-9dcf-c374747c6e74 3.2.1 48596069-7af3-4f89-97b3-4f3577a62428 Technical Reviews Conduct technical reviews of evaluations to inform investment decisions 8ddff2f9-86be-4f9e-8b64-d51e9bfac4bf 3.2.2 483be144-bcc6-44e1-909b-49f6466d9755 Evaluation Strategies Review grantee evaluation strategies 6d140f8e-cab5-415a-b01f-9f7f076c251b 3.2.3 Grantees fc8c8811-1ed0-4f3e-b829-d424cd9816fa Training & Technical Assistance Provide training and technical assistance in support of grantee program and evaluation strategies 3701a35a-ad2c-4bf0-bc77-97aeab34af35 3.2.4 a37f0328-fc2f-457a-b32a-845c841639cf Learning Communities Develop, implement and maintain active learning communities. 1a6bc703-2657-4be9-99fa-eab8eb4d570a 3.2.5 Social Innovation Fund Knowledge Network The Social Innovation Fund Knowledge Network provides opportunities to share protocols, ideas and promising practices, as well as a forum to discuss strategies, ask questions and solicit support. It is a prototype for establishing future learning communities among organizations working in each of our strategic focus areas. CNCS has established a learning community to maximize the individual and collective impact of the entities involved with the SIF. 3f281ccd-4274-4d59-9be8-7069407c9c3a Public-Private Partnerships Leverage community assets through public-private partnerships. 337fc53d-9569-43b0-917d-3ee00740c74d 3.3 National service has always been a vehicle for public-private partnership through match requirements and strategies requiring local collaboration to receive our resources. The structure of the SIF reinforces CNCS' role as a catalyst for leveraging federal investments with private funding... TBD TBD TBD TBD Priority Measure: * To be determined -- Outcomes of capacity building efforts initiated by CNCS activities on key indicators of nonprofit organization capacity. Impact Measurement Develop a plan for measuring the impact of capacity building activities that leverage private investment in community solutions. 79853ecc-d536-451b-8e36-f7e67b4c1c9b 3.3.1 These capacity building activities may be provided by VISTA, state service commissions, intermediary grantees and others 800ac71d-24c3-4908-ab7b-23087b94a225 National Service Network Organizations Develop collaborations with national service network organizations for disseminating CNCS knowledge, expanding opportunities to serve and building capacity to use service at the local level 2e28e7c4-c45b-4915-80fa-37e59e5dc020 3.3.2 National Service Network Organizations fe4d79e0-3d1e-4a4d-8e3f-f9b154c64374 Philanthropic Community Develop collaborations with the philanthropic community. 557743f1-57ec-4526-902d-44f7506f0bd8 3.3.3 Philanthropic Community We hope to supplement our investments in local communities by actively seeking opportunities for joint investment. d8285605-7ddb-4823-abf5-919f55256021 Operations & Accountability Fortify management operations and sustain a capable, responsive and accountable organization 1db85fb7-4dc6-4ac2-8f41-d73d53dcb94e 4 IT Systems Strengthen IT systems to enhance efficiencies, enable program effectiveness and improve accountability. 9837ccff-2413-4713-9bc9-72f529371c24 4.1 Priority Measure: * Complete modernization of IT infrastructure. 7f079f1a-ec2f-4d5d-8d0b-4b48ab867c15 Data Warehouse Enhance data warehouse. 2e91b517-772b-4467-8510-39c8115eba71 4.1.1 With our focus on results, we need to improve collection and analysis of grantees' and sponsors' performance measures. We will rely on an enhanced data warehouse that will provide the infrastructure needed to collect, analyze and report detailed performance measures. This work will continue to support the Open Government initiative to make data more readily available to the public. 7ba9dff4-c1b3-42fc-a016-1a3a9347a384 Public Facing Systems Modify our public facing systems and user interface. 5133e88e-c319-4d0f-bb48-0c1fdc98abcd 4.1.2 The Strategic Plan public forums we conducted with the national service network identified key interfaces we need to modify (e.g., enhanced flexibility and ease of use in grant application and member management systems). d1d539fe-9fe4-4df8-ad3f-be018049a998 Software & Cloud Computing Continue to improve the computing environment by shifting to modern software and cloud computing. 2fc932c4-42dc-4cd1-81e3-4e0c0efd172c 4.1.3 A recent government-wide plan requires federal agencies to move toward cloud computing solutions. Embracing cloud computing will lower IT costs, improve system access and stability, and enable IT staff to focus on supporting the needs of the programs. 9e6eced7-f04e-431d-8bbb-7b0656133d16 IT Security Enhance IT security. 5523cd6f-4fcc-45cc-969c-9c3b1540faa3 4.1.4 As systems are enhanced and/or redesigned, we will prioritize security. There will be a concerted effort to reduce or eliminate privacy data and improve access controls while staying compliant with laws and regulations. e85344e2-8b3c-452a-a4e8-d4ec99a68247 Workforce Develop and retain a talented, diverse and adaptive workforce that continues to promote organizational excellence and advance national service. 1dfd9d28-3cf9-4692-803f-c9e3f8857018 4.2 CNCS Workforce Human Capital Plan Implementation Implement strategic human capital plan. TBD Human Capital Plan Develop and implement a strategic human capital plan to achieve strategic work alignment. bbc2bf5c-2215-4636-9ea2-010e8e8fc17b 4.2.1 CNCS will develop a human capital strategic plan reflecting workforce assessment, identification of new competencies and a baseline for recruitment and retention (including technical competency and leadership development). 6c304734-39cc-4d64-bc5e-e9d9a37f89c3 Organizational Culture Create an organizational culture that promotes adaptability and continuous learning 4c3d44c0-1047-4630-a59f-a00064801018 4.2.2 In order to foster innovation and responsiveness, we must also create an organizational culture that promotes adaptability and continuous learning through workforce engagement across program areas, cross-training and use of matrix management. f30e27c9-35a1-4a4d-9c23-eea44826e123 Planning, Recruitment & Positioning We will plan, recruit and place positions in the workforce in order to meet CNCS' current and projected work requirements. 0517cbd6-5f50-4ff0-aff2-d41dde62620c 4.2.3 CNCS is committed to the strategic management of federal personnel. Additional experience in our six focus areas will be needed to advance our work, along with a working knowledge of program evaluation and results accountability. We will continually assess the key requirements of our work. An assessment will be used to align the competencies of the workforce with the work requirements. Accordingly, on-going assessment and monitoring of key human capital talent dimensions will be planned to ensure our workforce is properly supporting CNCS' goals. 3e2031bd-7fea-4fbc-8b3e-07e7f7f4cf65 Business Infrastructure Ensure that financial and grants management systems and policies support CNCS' business infrastructure so that the objectives and goals of this Strategic plan can be met. 9e73268d-3762-4094-bab5-ba94c0b59f4f 4.3 Financial Statements Publication Prepare and publish audited financial statements covering CNCS operations within 45 days of fiscal year end. TBD Control & Compliance Issues Lack Of Ensure that no internal control or compliance issues are identified in annual financial statements. TBD Grant & Contracts Awards Timeliness Award and close grants and contracts within prescribed timeframes. TBD Acquisitions Cost Savings & Efficiencies Achieve acquisition cost savings and efficiencies. TBD Financial System Maintain an optimal, secure, financial system environment. b6819d82-eb36-4810-aac5-4398a7b5b633 4.3.1 CNCS will establish and maintain an environment for financial transaction integrity and internal controls because it is fundamental to our core grantmaking function and essential to providing fiscal accountability to the public. CNCS will continue efforts to achieve a grant payment processing environment that is convenient, efficient, automated, cost-effective, and secure, while ensuring transactions are processed at the highest level of security as demonstrated by preparing and publishing independently audited financial statements for the public. 8a2af901-9442-4468-8236-06bbb0b9f236 Internal Controls Promote adherence to internal controls. 352e37bc-a776-4266-bebc-633c269774bd 4.3.2 We will implement and test controls over financial reporting required by law and public policy. CNCS will expand the use of internal control associates to promote a strong control environment, identify areas for improved operations and test agency compliance. These activities will have a specific focus on CNCS' grant processes and program operations, which collectively comprise a majority of CNCS' funding. 9c1b317b-fd2f-4430-8e40-84ba8fca3321 Grants, Contracts & Results Award grants and contracts and publish results within timelines prescribed by policy. 3a671eb4-1d45-41ae-8e1b-37913f8cc983 4.3.3 We will carry out our grant award activity in a timely and transparent manner, promote accountability by providing the public with information and improve program effectiveness by promoting a focus on results, service quality and customer satisfaction. CNCS will continue efforts to streamline grant award processes. 57e31e17-b798-4e65-9a0c-0aa96bd10d34 2010-10-01 2015-09-30 2013-12-13 Submit error.