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SPF-SIG Home > Projects > Unified Governance Structures

Unified Governance Structure (UGS) Study

The Unified Governance Structure (UGS) Study delineates and describes systems that local Maine communities have built to deliver a wide variety of prevention and health promotion related services. The study includes the structures and processes that these communities have developed to accomplish the five steps(1) delineated in the SPF-SIG grant. These five steps are generic - a familiar part of most planning processes. The participating UGS sites have each created distinctly different approaches that have worked well for their geographic areas.

The study was led by Dr. Paul Florin, a Professor of Psychology at the University of Rhode Island and Adjunct Professor of Community Health at Brown University and staffed by Meredith Fossel, former SPF SIG Prevention Specialist at the Maine Office of Substance Abuse. The study was participatory, with substantial input and direction coming from the study sites themselves. Participants from all of the study sites met with the researcher monthly and completed activities between meetings.

Products produced include a Coalition Function Matrix (PDF) and a report on What Coaltions Can Do (PDF).

The following sites to participated in the UGS study:

  • Community Wellness Coalition of Southern York, York, ME – Diane Brandon
  • Healthy Androscoggin, Lewiston, ME – Angela Westhoff
  • Healthy Community Coalition, Wilton, ME – Leah Binder
  • Healthy Hancock, Ellsworth & Bucksport, ME – Helena Peterson, Mary Jane Bush
  • PATCH/Communities for Children and Youth, Waterville, ME – Janet Sawyer, Alison Webb
  • Portland Public Health, Portland, ME – Ronni Katz
  • River Valley Healthy Communities, Rumford, ME – Patricia Duguay
  • Youth Promise of Lincoln County, Newcastle, ME – Mary Trescot

The SPF-SIG Five Steps:

1. Profile population needs, resources, and readiness to address needs and gaps.

2. Mobilize and/or build capacity to address needs.

3. Develop a Comprehensive Strategic Plan.

4. Implement evidence-based prevention programs and activities.

5. Monitor, evaluate, sustain, and improve or replace programs that fail.