By Sue Ellen Woodcock
These days if you want to go after grant dollars you have to be armed with your information and your numbers to make your case. Gathering this information is key in keeping the nationally recognized Recovery Program afloat.
The Winthrop Health Department and the Public Health Nurse Deanna Faretra have brought in a summer intern to work on numbers and statistics for the Recovery Program.
Jennifer Kish of Georgia is a master’s degree candidate in Public Health at Boston University. She landed her internship in Winthrop through the state Department of Public Health. The state agency places students working on their master’s degree and pays them a stipend. Kish received her bachelor’s degree in nutrition from the University of Wisconsin.
In Winthrop Kish is working on data analysis pertaining to the Recovery Program. No one has worked on the data analysis and the Winthrop Health Department needs more formal data for the Recovery Program. The Recovery Program is a collaborative program between the town and CASA (Community Action for Safe Alternatives).
“She’s professional, smart and helpful,” said Faretra. “When we streamline the data collection, management and analysis the Town will be able to come up with grants and we will have all of the data.”
All this work is specific to the recovery coaches.”
The Town’s two recovery coaches are funded through a grant and future grant may help keep them.
“My work is specific to the coaches,” Kish said. “We have data from the police and recovery coaches and all of this is done while protecting confidentiality.”
Kish keeps the database of 50-60 people who received services from the recovery coaches anonymous. Over 200 people have been served as a result police referrals. Kish is also tracking the amount of time spent on each person through the recovery program and track their progress.
“I hope to soon work with the police department in their data collection,” Kish said. “This gives us a big picture look. If you make it easier for police to track the numbers there will be easier reporting. We’re sort of building a plane while flying it.”
In August Kish will make a presentation on her findings to the Town Council.
“I hope to have trends, who is in progress, the mean ago, etc.” Kish said. “This will be the first real reporting of the data from the Recovery Coach Program.”