Published: January 2017
“In this brief, we examine the lessons from a partnership between Goodwill of Central and Southern Indiana and the National Service Office of Nurse-Family Partnership (NFP) — two individual organizations with a global presence. With support from the Aspen Institute, they are working together to scale both vertically and horizontally in order to deliver greater collective impact for families. … The ability to scale is a significant issue in the human services field. Extensive efforts are underway and supported by funders and thought leaders, which begs the question of why the scaling of evidence-based programs with extensive proof of return on investment is not complete.
First, many organizations lack the capacity to scale (infrastructure, local presence, funding, etc) while ensuring model fidelity. Second, perverse incentives to scale exist. Local communities tend to support local innovations even if the evidence of outcomes is less clear. While the funding community encourages and often provides incentives for partnerships, funders struggle to support multiple approaches simultaneously. Third, scaling together requires commitment from multiple levels within the collaborating agencies, from boards of directors to enrollment personnel. This paper shares lessons learned, practical approaches to scale, and a vision for two-generation solutions to poverty. The end goal is for families to have access to a wider array of evidence-based and evidence-informed supports to exit poverty.”