Providence House


The Crisis Nursery model is an effective and proven early intervention resource that can strengthen and preserve families and help children thrive.

External Evaluations of Providence House

Providence House has participated in two long-term outcomes studies with Case Western Reserve University to measure the effectiveness of our services:

Our first long-term outcomes study affirmed our belief that when parents and guardians are actively engaged in our recommended support services, there is less chance of their children entering foster care. The study was published in Volume 61 (February 2016) of the Children and Youth Services Review.


Providence House completed a study of our long-term outcomes against public foster care data:

  • First in the U.S.: This is the first study of crisis nursery outcomes against public data in the United States
  • Independent University Evaluation: Directed by David Crampton, PhD., Associate Professor of Social Work at the Jack, Joseph, and Morton Mandel School of Applied Social Sciences, Case Western Reserve University – respected child welfare researcher
  • 5 Year Evaluation Period: The study assessed the relationship and outcomes between families who received Providence House services between 2006-2009 and public child welfare system data from 2005-2010
  • Nationally and Locally Funded: By the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation and several local funders

Major Findings

  • Reduced Foster Care Placements: When parents and guardians engage in Providence House services, and complete recommended Providence House services (case managementparent education, and Aftercare), their children are less likely to be placed in foster care after they leave Providence House.
  • Successful Minority Families: Minority families (African American and Bi-racial) are the most successful (vs. Caucasian), with more engagement in Providence House services and less foster care involvement after their child’s stay. 
  • Sometimes It Takes More Than Once: 26% of children at Providence House in this study had multiple admissions. Families that used Providence House multiple times were found to be no more likely to become involved with the foster care system than families that only used Providence House once.

To prove that our services have a long-term impact that goes beyond foster care prevention, Providence House also engaged in an evaluation with the Partnership for Program Evaluation and Research Implementation (PERI). This evaluation, conducted by researchers from the Begun Center at Case Western Reserve University, found that families who participate in our services experience greater long-term success in obtaining housing, employment, and income, among other social determinants of health.


Providence House partnered with PERI, a high-quality program evaluation resource for health and human services organizations, to help ensure that our data points reflected the impactful outcomes achieved from our programs and services.

Major Findings


PERI researchers also assisted us in revising the questions we ask parents/guardians during admission, discharge, and through Aftercare to help us to better evaluate our program internally.

What’s Next?

In an effort to further prove the enduring impact of Providence House services beyond the findings from our two previous evaluations, we are now focused on completing a second external evaluation. This evaluation will focus not only on foster care prevention, but on our service as an alternative response to foster care for open case families as well as further evaluating minority success in our program. We are also seeking to share our data through current community data systems in an effort to monitor the continuum of services helping children and families in our community.

Other Crisis Nursery Research

A growing body of national data is emerging to support Crisis Nursery programs as a vital service for families and children in crisis. These results, coupled with recent research linking brain development and chronic illnesses to adverse childhood experiences (ACEs), as well as the local and national effort to identify effective interventions as alternatives to foster care, clearly position the Crisis Nursery model as an effective and proven early intervention resource that can strengthen and preserve families and help children achieve their optimum potential throughout their lives.

Learn more about the research that supports Crisis Nursery programs as a vital service for families and children in crisis: