Client Story

Child Development Institute

How CDI is changing the landscape of children’s mental health.

Child Development Institute

Client since

2014

Type of work

Evidence-based children mental health services

Current platform

SmartSimple Platform 3

Previous platform

Excel spreadsheets and Word Documents

Key challenges

  • Inefficient research data management
  • Confined by a system that could not accommodate program expansion

Gen3 Impact

  • Enabled CDI to structure and standardize the way it collects information at every stage of their process
  • Implemented system optimized for effective collaboration and high fidelity exchange of data between stakeholders and families across all communities

At a glance

Child Development Institute’s (CDI) spreadsheet-based administrative process needed a software solution to accommodate its Canada-wide expansion of mental health services. Not only did CDI need a way to consolidate and track all stages of their implementation and service delivery around the world, they also needed to maintain fidelity and create a support system for their affiliate offices across the country and beyond.

Gen3 built a centralized system on SmartSimple’s Platform 3 that enabled CDI to collect and report data across all of their locations to best serve families and support internal and external stakeholders during all stages of program implementation.

 

About CDI

CDI is an evidence-based, gender-specific intervention program with a proven track record in changing lives. CDI teaches children ages 6-11 and their families, how to stop and think before they act and make better choices “in the moment.”

South Asian father and son smiling
Photo of blond hair boy standing against a wall

Child Development Institute (CDI), an accredited children’s mental health agency based in Toronto, developed SNAP over 33 years ago as ain response for for at-risk children in conflict with the law. Since then, the SNAP program has grown and evolved into an internationally recognized and award-winning early intervention model.

“We’re changing the landscape of how children’s mental health is addressed, with Gen3 helping immensely in that process.”

Leena Augimeri
Director, SNAP Scientific and Program Development

Leena Augimeri
Smiling boy looking into the camera

Spreadsheets creating a spread-thin administrative process

In 2014, CDI launched its 5-year international expansion project to reach 140 communities across Canada through localized partnerships. To date, CDI is currently meeting its national targets and have over 70 sites worldwide. Prior to this, tracking down data took precious administrative hours, creating a lag in communication between CDI and its teams.

While the SNAP program was effectively scaling on a national level, consistent and clear communication with both internal teams and external partners was critical. “Our data was in need of centralization through an innovative operational platform so that we could work more efficiently toward our ambitious goal,” says Margaret Walsh, Manager, Research and Evaluation for CDI. “Gen3 helped change how we communicate our findings to licensed sites. We now have a platform to gather our data and best serve our families,” adds Walsh.

Mother and daughter, smiling, looking into the camera
Margaret Walsh

“Gen3 helped change how we communicate our findings to licensed sites. We now have a platform to gather our data and best serve our families.”

Margaret Walsh
Manager, Research and Evaluation for CDI

The need for a system to bring everything together

Before SmartSimple, CDI didn’t have access to customizable software. “We wanted to develop a tool to track all stages of our program’s processes, from pre-implementation to service delivery,” says Walsh. CDI was looking for a reliable solution that spoke to all elements of their implementation work that included collecting and tracking activities both at CDI headquarters and across all affiliate sites. “We wanted a centralized solution that does everything but slice bread,” says Adam Donato, Researcher, CDI.

Young girl smiling and looking into camera
Two young boys smiling and looking at the camera

When searching for systems, CDI had a limited scope. “We were looking specifically for case management, but in speaking with Gen3, we were able to expand and realize the possibility of incorporating everything else,” says Walsh. These other elements included pre-implementation management, implementation management (training, consultation), fund management, press and media management, and staff management (research studies, awards, outreach).

“We’ve cut down on admin time by 50% – the whole staff has made their workflow more efficient.”

Margaret Walsh
Manager, Research and Evaluation for CDI

Children wearing rain boots
Close up of a young boy looking to one side

Working with technology to change the landscape of mental health

After working with the SmartSimple system, CDI has structured and standardized the way it collects information. The CDI pre-implementation team “loves” the system. “We now have a very organized way to track our data and build upon our expertise,” says Walsh. The system has also provided built-in efficiencies in how the finance team tracks spending. “We’ve cut down on admin time by 50% — the whole staff has made their workflow more efficient,” says Walsh. On the research side, CDI has been able to collect data in a structured and standardized way.

Clinicians can get real-time pre-treatment and post-treatment data, and with ad-hoc statistical analysis tools, CDI can focus on unique ways to further deliver its services in children’s mental health. “We’re changing the landscape of how children’s mental health is addressed, with Gen3 helping immensely in that process,” says Leena Augimeri, Director, SNAP Scientific and Program Development.

Young girl resting her chin on her hand smiling at the camera
Photo of three little girls sitting together outside

“We were looking specifically for case management, but in speaking with Gen3, we were able to expand and realize the possibility of incorporating everything else.”

Margaret Walsh
Manager, Research and Evaluation for CDI

Breaking new ground in mental health research

CDI is now able to strategize more effectively and inform the mental health field as a whole. “Once we’ve analyzed the data, it helps to inform implementation processes and most importantly treatment response,” says Walsh. With their sights toward the future, CDI is focusing on refining and building a polished system to get to the core pieces they need to scale into a broader, international community. “We’re looking to integrate machine learning to link the quality of the training to the ability to affect the outcome of a child, creating a wraparound method to suggest the best treatment approach,” says Adam Donato. “We’re creating a hive mind resource,” adds Donato.

Young boy with curly hair looking at the camera
Children in a learning session with a teacher

As SNAP scales to additional new communities, the SNAP team feels confident with its flexible system providing support every step of the way. “Gen3’s support over the years has been wonderful and has helped us in our mission to transform the lives of children, youth and their families,” says Walsh. “I can’t imagine how we could manage everything in our work without Gen3,” concludes Walsh.

“I can’t imagine how we could manage everything in our work without Gen3.”

Margaret Walsh
Manager, Research and Evaluation for CDI

Two boys playing outdoors

We use cookies and other technologies so that we can understand how you use our site. Further use of this site will be considered consent. For more information, please view our Privacy Policy.