Using Digital Dashboards to Implement and Evaluate Programs

Part One - Introduction


In response to the higher rates of suicide among farmers and the limited access to healthcare and mental

health services, the Farm and Ranch Stress Assistance Network (FRSAN) was developed to address the rising

mental health crisis in farming communities. This publication serves the dual purpose of explaining the

necessity of mental and behavioral health services for farmers and rural communities and identifies the

challenges in coordinating complex programming and implementation of services. The NexGen Program

analysis creates a framework that helps to determine the most efficacious mental health intervention

programs, packages the suite of tools together, and promotes the adoption of improved programs to meet

the unique needs of agricultural producers and their allies. Missouri’s FRSAN evaluation program uses a

continuous improvement evaluation approach, implementing an educational decision-oriented model to

identify strengths and limitations in curricula, instruction, and delivery. Unique to this approach is the use of

digital dashboards to streamline and define processes that create a simple path forward to support large

multidisciplinary teams and multiple mental health training programs.


The New Technologies for Ag Extension Project Accelerator (NTAE) NexGen Program Evaluation simplifies

and streamlines the evaluation process for the University

of Missouri (MU) Extension’s mental health and suicide

prevention program. The program is part of the multi-state

North Central Farm and Ranch Stress Assistance Center

initiative (NCFRSACi) supported with funds from the United

States Department of Agriculture National Institute of Food and

Agriculture (USDA-NIFA) under project number (USDA-NIFA

Award #2020-70028-32728).

Given complex evaluation and program delivery challenges,

this publication outlines a strategy used by the University of Missouri (MU) Extension to manage and

evaluate complex initiatives to coordinate easy access to program assets and reduce project reporting

limitations when working with large, multi-disciplinary teams. The publication highlights the development

processes and tools created to help a large, multidisciplinary team improve the collection and reporting of

impacts and outcomes of the NCFRSACi training and education programs.


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