LIVE WELL ERIE is the result of more than nine months of work beginning in October 2018. Many county departments including the Departments of Social Services, Senior Services, Health, Mental Health, Public Advocacy, Parks, Environment and Planning, and Information and Support Services, were involved. More than 60 different community partners were also involved including the United Way of Buffalo and Erie County, the Childcare Resource Network, Say Yes Buffalo, the University at Buffalo School of Law Community Justice Clinic, the International Institute of Buffalo, Population Health Collaborative, Catholic Charities of Buffalo, and many more.
The effort was led by a steering committee consisting of representatives from the County Executive’s office and several key departments. Early on in the process the steering committee agreed to employ a RESULTS BASED ACCOUNTABILITY (RBA) methodology. RBA is a data-driven, decision-making process that starts with the ultimate goal or result in mind and works backwards from there. RBA allows for a focus on the targeted population for each goal or desired result.
In addition to using RBA, the steering committee also established five guiding principles in which to frame the work. These GUIDING PRINCIPLES include:
- A clear focus on the social determinants of health;
- An integration of the Racial Equity Impact Analysis (see Appendix);
- An invitation for innovative thinking;
- An opportunity for the modernization of service delivery;
- An expectation of partnership and collaboration.
With the RBA methodology and the guiding principles established, the steering committee convened a partner orientation with more than 60 community organizations in January 2019. At that time, the partners were invited to join Erie County departments in three different working groups: Every Child Deserves a Chance to Succeed; Empowering Working Families; and Support for our Seniors. Each working group then discussed the goals and desired results for each population, identified the data that would be used to track progress towards the goals, and brainstormed a variety of initiatives Erie County and the community partners could work on together to help make progress towards the goals. The initiatives brainstormed by each of the working groups were vetted by the steering committee and are assembled in a separate document called LIVE WELL ERIE Community Strategies. While the Live Well Erie Vision will stay the same, Erie County recognizes that the Community Strategies and initiatives will need to change and evolve over time based on how effective the initiatives are at helping to achieve the goals.