Family Support Program Evaluation

Project Type - Disability


The Family Support Program (FSP) is intended to support families caring for someone with a disability, at home, empowering families and helping them stay together and in touch with their local communities. Disability Services Queensland (DSQ) has funded the FSP since 2000 and as part of the ongoing accountability processes the FSP was subject to an evaluation in 2007/08.  


The purpose of the evaluation was to identify and confirm best practice model(s) for service delivery and optimum outcomes for participating families. 


The evaluation has two core objectives:

1. To identify the attributes of the FSP model that positively contribute to achieving the specific aims of the Program.

2. To evaluate the administrative and business processes of service development (including governance and service delivery in relation to achieving good outcomes for families, service providers and funding body.


Accordingly, the evaluation is expected to:

  • provide empirical evidence on best-practice to achieve desired outcomes for consumers with a disability and their families
  • ascertain best practice model(s) for family support programs
  • identify opportunities for improving and/or further developing the FSP (whilst taking into consideration the directions outlined in the Growing Stronger reform program). 
  • a comprehensive and evidence based Evaluation Framework was developed based on the findings of the Situational Analysis
  • analysis of qualitative data was based on grounded theory. A range of quantitative tools, including rudimentary statistical analyses were conducted on the numerical data made available to the evaluation team from the FSP. Data included:

- numbers and profiles of families using FSP services across the participating sites

- focus group and interview data

  • extensive stakeholder consultations including:

- surveys

> of families (the families were also asked if they would also like to participate in a critical incident technique (CIT) based Focus Group)

> to collect empirical data on all participating Service Agencies’ business and administrative processes and outcomes

- focus groups- with DSQ, Service Agencies and consumers (telephone interviews were offered to participants who were unable or did not wish to attend a focus group).


Consistent with the objectives of the evaluation, HOI produced a final report identifying:

  • findings related to resilience and capacity building
  • the characteristics of families providing feedback to the evaluation
  • families perspectives about:

- the administration and processes associated with FSP

- critical success factors of the FSP

  • key attributes of the FSP contributing to effective outcomes
  • future directions.