Public/Private Ventures (P/PV)

Legacy Collection

Innovation. Research. Action.

After almost 35 years Public/Private Ventures (P/PV) has ceased operations. The organization leaves behind an incredible legacy of knowledge, including hundreds of research reports, case studies and evaluations about how best to improve programs and outcomes for children, youth and families. We are fortunate that P/PV has decided to archive its publications collection with the Foundation Center's IssueLab so that practitioners can benefit from this knowledge for years to come.

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Mentoring Former Prisoners: A Guide for Reentry Programs

November 1, 2009

Few social programs have attempted to provide high-risk adults -- and, particularly, former prisoners -- with mentors. And thus there are few resources that offer practical advice and recommendations for mentoring this population, given its distinct needs, assets and challenges. While much remains to be tested and learned, this manual draws on the experience of the 11 sites involved in P/PV'sReady4Work prisoner reentry demonstration, as well as established best practices in the mentoring field, to provide guidelines for practitioners who are interested in developing a mentoring program to support former prisoners and enhance the effectiveness of other reentry services, such as employment and case management services.The guide was originally published by the US Department of Labor in November 2007 under the title Mentoring Ex-Prisoners: A Guide for Prisoner Reentry Programs. However, because of growing interest in establishing mentoring programs as part of larger reentry efforts around the country, P/PV decided to reissue the guide, along with updated information related to P/PV's evaluation of Ready4Work (particularly findings published in Mentoring Formerly Incarcerated Adults, 2009.)

High School Mentors In Brief: Findings from the Big Brothers Big Sisters School-Based Mentoring Impact Study

October 1, 2009

This issue of P/PV In Brief is based on High School Students as Mentors, a report that examined the efficacy of high school mentors using data from P/PV's large-scale random assignment impact study of Big Brothers Big Sisters school-based mentoring programs. The brief presents an overview of the findings, which suggest that high school volunteers bring inherent strengths to their role as mentors but also present notable challenges for programs; implications for policy and practice are also explored.

Reaching Through the Cracks: A Guide to Implementing the Youth Violence Reduction Partnership

July 1, 2008

In 1999, the Youth Violence Reduction Partnership (YVRP) was launched by a group of key stakeholders in Philadelphia -- including the district attorney's office, adult and juvenile parole, other city agencies and community organizations. Its goal is to steer young people, ages 14 to 24 and at greatest risk of killing or being killed, away from violence and toward productive lives. To accomplish this, YVRP provides participants with a combination of strict supervision and ongoing support. Each participant is assigned to a team that includes a probation officer and a community streetworker, who maintain intensive contact with the young person to make sure that he (and less often she) not only stays out of trouble but starts on a path toward responsible adulthood.Reaching Through the Cracks draws upon lessons learned from seven years of experience in Philadelphia to describe how cities and other jurisdictions can plan and carry out an initiative like YVRP. It includes an overview of the key elements of YVRP; steps in planning the initiative; roles and training of staff who work with the participants and details about the supervision and support these staff provide; essential practices for maintaining and strengthening YVRP; and an exploration of the costs and other issues involved in making decisions about expanding the initiative.

Growing Bigger Better: Lessons from Experience Corps' Expansion in Five Cities

June 25, 2008

Going to scale often entails replicating a program in new locations, but it can also involve efforts to expand a programs reach in existing locations, enabling it to have a greater effect on communities already being served. This was the case with Experience Corps, a Civic Ventures program that enlists older adults as volunteers to help strengthen literacy and other skills of elementary school students in low-income neighborhoods. Beginning in 2001, with support from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and The Atlantic Philanthropies, Experience Corps embarked on a four-year initiative to expand in five cities. P/PV examined the five sites efforts to increase the size of their volunteer pool and expand to additional schools, manage their larger and more complex programs, and raise sufficient funds to meet annual goals and sustain growth.Growing Bigger Better considers how the sites initial readiness to expand, the organizational resources they possessed, and the receptivity of the external environment (i.e., the local school districts) shaped the sites progress. The report reflects on whether and how the local sites, and the program as a whole, benefited from the expansion effort, drawing out lessons that are relevant to other programs considering expansion. It concludes that while program expansion is a major undertaking, the Experience Corps expansion initiative clearly demonstrates how programs can become stronger, more energized and even more innovative through carefully planned and managed growth, and thus extend the benefits of their services to larger numbers of individuals and communities.

Growing Bigger Better: Lessons from Experience Corps Expansion in Five Cities Executive Summary

June 25, 2008

This summary presents key findings from the full report, Growing Bigger Better, which examines the Experience Corps programs four-year expansion initiative. The summary briefly considers whether and how the local sites, and the program as a whole, benefited from the expansion effort and presents lessons that are relevant to other programs considering expansion.

Advancing Achievement: Findings from an Independent Evaluation of a Major After-School Initiative

February 1, 2008

This report presents outcomes from Public/Private Ventures research on CORAL, an eight-year, $58 million after-school initiative of The James Irvine Foundation. Findings described in the report demonstrate the relationship between high-quality literacy programming and academic gains and underscore the potential role that quality programs may play in the ongoing drive to improve academic achievement. The report includes a 12-page executive summary.

Gaining Ground: Supporting English Learners Through After-School Literacy Programming

February 1, 2008

This brief presents findings that demonstrate a relationship between key approaches in CORAL, an eight-year, $58 million after-school initiative of The James Irvine Foundation, and the academic progress of English learners. In addition to presenting findings, the brief suggests important considerations for any policymaker and funder interested in the success of English learners as a growing student population.

Just Out: Early Lessons from the Ready4Work Prisoner Reentry Initiative

February 17, 2006

Just Out examines the early implementation of Ready4Work, a three-year national prisoner reentry demonstration project funded by the US Departments of Labor and Justice the Annie E. Casey and Ford foundations. The report focuses on emerging best practices in four key program areas. While P/PV provided the basic program design to the 17 lead organizations participating in the project, each site was given creative latitude to build programs unique to their own organizations, resources, partnerships and missions. Through this work, many innovative and promising approaches to effective prisoner reentry emerged, as did challenges for which solutions were sought. Just Out focuses of Ready4Work's 11 adult sites (the other six sites serve juvenile offenders). It offers practical advice about recruitment, case management, mentoring and employment, and documents early lessons in this growing area of study, policy and advocacy.

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