Comprehensive Prevention Planning Tools and Resources

The California Department of Social Services (CDSS) envisions “An integrated state-wide system that supports families to provide safe, stable, nurturing relationships and environments for their children and youth”.This vision, developed through the CDSS Office of Child Abuse Prevention (OCAP) 2020 Strategic Plan, involves a system of care supported by a framework for prevention that includes primary, secondary, and tertiary strategies, grounded in principles of fairness and equity. 



As outlined in the All County Letter (ACL No. 22-23), the Prevention Planning Capacity Assessment tool is available to assess the motivation, commitment and readiness of the local Title IV-E agency and community partners, to change, develop and implement comprehensive prevention strategies. The Capacity Assessment is comprised of four domains that address the (1) motivation for change, (2) provider capacity and capability, (3) system capacity and capability, and (4) policy supports. 

To complete and submit the CDSS Capacity Assessment Tool virtually, please use the following link (a hard copy of the tool can also be found here): Click to Access Capacity Assessment Tool


Developing and Utilizing a Cross Sector Collaborative Approach 

A. Developing a Cross-Sector Comprehensive Prevention Planning Collaborative

The prevention of child maltreatment and its recurrence cannot only be the charge of the child welfare system. Therefore, cross-system coordination, collaboration, and practice are critical to meeting the goals of FFPS.

B. Regional Collaborative Option

The CDSS will accept CPPs that are submitted by a regional collaborative to streamline the delivery and infrastructure of prevention services across counties where such services are not readily available or will be more efficiently administered.

C. Required and Encouraged Partners

  1. At minimum (based on ACL*), you must identify who should be represented on the Prevention Planning Collaborative (include agency, title, name, and email).

Additional considerations and strategies for engaging community members in governance structures can be found here: Collective Impact Forum Community Engagement Toolkit

While there are many different approaches to engaging community members, specific strategies are listed in the Data Playbook in section 2, beginning on page 35: Safe and Sound Data Playbook

D. Authentic Community, Parent, Youth & Tribal Engagement

The prevention planning process is built on the concept that client feedback is critical and community organizations provide invaluable information to inform the process. 

Additional resources and guidance can be found here: 


E. Governance and Infrastructure

As an outgrowth of this multi-agency planning, with the implementation of AB2083 and the development of Memoranda of Understandings (MOUs), local Title IV-E Agencies are strongly encouraged to incorporate comprehensive prevention planning and implementation into their AB2083 MOUs and Interagency Leadership Teams (ILTs). 

Click here for Memorandum of Understanding Information Guide


A mission statement articulates the cross-sector collaborative’s purpose, the reason the team exists, and the overall goal.

Vision, Values, and Principles 

A vision statement is a succinct, aspirational statement which reflects the overall goal of the cross-sector collaborative. 

Center for States, Teaming Brief: Click Here

Population Change Institute Collective Capacities: Click Here

Stanford Social Innovations Review, “Community Engagement Matters (Now More Than Ever)”: Click Here

FRIENDS NRC Collaboration toolkit: Click Here

Conducting Community Asset Mapping and a Needs Assessment

Asset mapping is a process whereby a community’s assets are specifically identified, described, and often (but not always) visualized geographically on a map.

Community Asset Mapping and Needs Assessment

Gap analysis instrument available on Strategies TA website: Strategies TA Gap Analysis Instrument 

Data Playbook for Prevention Planning: Safe and Sound Data Playbook     

Healthy City Program, Participatory Asset Mapping: Asset Mapping Toolkit

Casey Family Programs, Opportunity Maps: Community Opportunity Map

 Asset-Based Community Development Tool Kit: Asset Mapping: ABCD Institute Resources

Building Community Resilience Action Guide: Partner Build Grow Action Guide Tools 

Selection of Candidacy Population


Developing a Theory of Change

The theory of change or logic model which describes the activities and intended outcomes for children, youth, parents, caregivers, and families.

Theory of Change Information

Selecting Primary, Secondary and Tertiary Strategies

When selecting prevention strategies (programs, services, innovative approaches) for the CPP, collaborative teams should consider their learning from both the asset mapping and needs assessment processes.

CDSS ACL 21-144: ARPA-CBCAP lists Primary Prevention strategies in Attachment A: All County Letter 21-144

CDC Technical Brief on Preventing Child Abuse and Neglect: CAN Prevention Technical Package

CDC Technical Brief on Preventing ACEs: Preventing ACES CDC

“Supporting the First 1,000 Days of A Child’s Life: An Anti-Racist Blueprint for Early Childhood Well-Being and Child Welfare Prevention.” Center for the Study of Social Policy, February 2021. (Provides Primary, Secondary, and Tertiary prevention strategies.) 1000 Days Blueprint



Selecting EBPs

The selection of Evidence Based Practice (EBP) at the local level should be based on data and information analyzed during the needs assessment and asset mapping processes.

Rationale for EBP Selection

Title IV-e Prevention Services Inventory: Click Here

Casey Family Programs guide for selecting evidence-based programs: Improve Evidence-based Program Selection

Child Welfare Information Gateway: Identifying and Assessing Evidence-Based Practices:Click Here

California Evidence Based Clearinghouse for Child Welfare: Click Here 


Ongoing Monitoring and CQI

Continuous quality improvement is the complete process of identifying, describing, and analyzing strengths and problems and then testing, implementing, learning from, and revising solutions.

Logic Model

A logic model is a depiction or roadmap that defines the inputs, outputs and outcomes of a program.

FRIENDS NRC has a comprehensive logic model page with how-tos, formatting, examples, etc.:  Friends NRC Logic Models

Ensuring EBP Fidelity

Monitoring, Evaluation and Applying Findings: Monitoring Evaluating

Assurance of Monitoring Child Safety


Developing Spending and Sustainability Plan

Child welfare should engage in cross-sector planning and collaboration for the purposes of the CPP with the goal of long-term sustainability.

Developing a Collaborative Communications Plan

A communication strategy guides an entire program or intervention. It sets the tone and direction so that all communication activities, products, and materials work in harmony to achieve the desired change.

Communication Strategy

The Community Tool Box at the University of Kansas, Center for Community Health and Development is a comprehensive resource for developing a communications plan as well as many other things: Community Tool Box Communication Plan      

Community Comms Collective, Communication Plan Template


Considerations and Additional Requirements for Title IV-E Agencies 

Contracting with Community Partners

For California Child Welfare agencies this means working actively and consistently with Probation, Behavioral Health, Education, Tribes, Regional Centers, and other like-minded partners to align training, orientation and services for youth in all systems.

Developing Strategies for Use of the ICPM

CDSS Website: Click here for ICPM Home Page


2022 Annual Statewide Child Abuse Prevention Planning Convening Slides

Reimagining Prevention Resources: Click here for CalTrin’s Reimagining Prevention Initiative