Ohio Kinship and Adoption Navigator

Improving supports for kinship and post-adoptive families

We contributed foundational research on effective practices to help the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services and its partner organizations develop and roll out a navigation program to support kinship and post-adoptive families. Using our cloud-based analytics platform with geospatial-mapping ability, we developed a web-based tool to connect families to the local resources they need. Using the tool's collaboration, rating, and review features, service navigators keep the information up-to-date and useful.


Our research and recommendations helped the state to develop an effective Navigator program for kinship and post-adoptive families in Ohio.

Our web-based, interactive service mapping tool helps Navigators provide fast, tailored connections to local resources and reflects a major change in the field of kinship navigation.

  • Evaluation Consultation
  • Technical Assistance and Training
  • Data System Development


The OhioKAN (Kinship and Adoption Navigator) project was launched to support kinship and post-adoptive families using funding from the federal Family First Prevention Services Act. To meet its goals, the program needed to use a research-based model and involve a rigorous evaluation that would meet the standards of the Title IV-E Prevention Services Clearinghouse. To support the effort, we conducted widespread and comprehensive research to:

  • Identify the characteristics and risk factors faced by kinship and post-adoptive children
  • Examine the effectiveness of existing and previously implemented kinship and post-adoption navigation and support programs
  • Compare the appropriateness and effectiveness of assessment and measurement tools for clinical and evaluation purposes in the areas of child safety, child permanency, child and caregiver well-being, family functioning, and caregiver stress
  • Consider the theoretical underpinnings for such programs

Evaluation Consultation

To be eligible for reimbursement under the Family First Prevention Services Act, Kinship Navigator programs need to have demonstrated positive effects through either a quasi-experimental or randomized controlled trial study. We provided consultation to the OhioKAN evaluation team on evaluation planning, measurement selection, and other research activities.

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Using our web-based platform with geospatial mapping ability, we developed a tool that lets Navigators quickly identify and share local resources with families.

Resource Database

A core component of the OhioKAN model is connecting caregivers with existing local resources through regional Navigators. We developed a web-based, interactive tool that allows Navigators to quickly identify relevant resources based on a family’s unique needs and physical location. Our database of over 7,000 Ohio-based resources displays through an interactive map, providing ease of use for Navigators; once matching resources have been identified, Navigators can text or email service referrals directly from the system. The tool also includes Yelp-style review options and data dashboard and reporting features.


Kaye Implementation & Evaluation


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