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The HHSinnovates Program: Winners' Gallery

October 3, 2011

Winning Innovations Selected by Secretary Sebelius

Supporting Tribal Grantees – ACF Makes it Simple 

Navigating grant requirements can be challenging, particularly when forms are complex and staff turnover is high.

 Read how ACF’s Children’s Bureau has helped tribal grantees access funds through streamlining processes and better understanding tribal needs.

The Tribal Child Welfare Team within the Administration for Children and Families (ACF) Region VI Children’s Bureau created a solution for improved accessibility to title IV-B grant funds (non-competitive grant to serve Indian families and children who are at risk of abuse and neglect). This process included developing improved relationships with Tribal grantees to better understand how the processes and forms could be improved to match their needs.

Without this streamlined procedure to apply for title IV-B funds, many Tribal directors would not have the time or resources to apply. The new templates are user-friendly, are written in clear and concise language and have helped improve transparency in the application process.

The new templates also allow Tribes to make updates into the same document each year. This process allows for any new directors to review an entire five year cycle and update the document with information about what has happened in their program each year. This new approach minimizes the risk of losing funding because of staff turnover.

Since implementation two years ago, nearly all of the 67 recognized Tribes within the states of Louisiana, Texas, Oklahoma and New Mexico are taking advantage of title IV-B funding.  

Visit the Children’s Bureau website for more information about Tribal IV-B funding.

Background on HHSinnovates

The HHSinnovates program was created as part of HHS Open Government efforts to celebrate innovation by employees of HHS. The program is aimed at building a culture of innovation at HHS through facilitating the exchange of innovative ideas throughout the Department. This contest seeks not only to recognize and reward good ideas but also to help promote them across the Department.

Twice a year, HHS employees are invited to submit innovations via an internal intranet site. The top innovations are posted for secure, on-line voting and commenting by the entire HHS community. The winning innovations are recognized by the Secretary in an awards ceremony and the innovators are personally invited to share their innovations with the Department’s leadership.

The first round of HHSinnovates was launched in May 2010, the second round was launched in October 2010, and the third round was launched in May 2011. The last three rounds of HHSinnovates have demonstrated how HHS employees have overcome resource constraints, packed schedules and organizational silos to provide creative, replicable and sustainable innovations that demonstrate outstanding leadership and promising results.


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