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Maximizing impact: CR supporting OHT’s and other community collaboratives to assess and improve foundational group elements

Collective Results has had the joy of supporting numerous community collaboratives, networks and groups that are coming together for a shared purpose and vision. We have worked with community drug strategies, housing collaboratives, mental health committees, Ontario Health Teams, health system integration tables, and more. These types of  groups are formed to work together on complex issues that require the collective wisdom and collaborative efforts of the group to make true progress and impact in communities. These groups often include diverse representation from community members, people with lived experiences (PWLE), organizational leaders from across the community and frontline staff. While there is so much potential in collaborative planning and working together, there are sometimes challenges in making progress. 

Has your group experienced this before? 

Some common challenges that these tables face are:

  • Some group members are motivated to dive right into action (let’s do this!) and others may want to cautiously plan, and plan, and plan

  • There is lack of clarity among the group on what the group is there to achieve and what support is needed from members

  • There is not agreement on the best way to make progress towards the group’s goals and which actions to prioritze

  • Decision making frameworks may be unclear so it may be hard to make decisions and/or some group members may feel that decisions are made in an unfair way

  • Group structures may seem inefficient (e.g. some people may feel like there are too many meetings or not enough meeting, some key people may be missing from the table, etc.) 

  • Members may not have capacity to do the work outside of the meetings

  • New group members can sometimes find it difficult to enter a new group when long standing relationships are already established

  • Any many, many more….

These challenges can stall the group’s formation, momentum and achievement of goals, depending on which stage your collaborative table is at. 

Collective Results can help! 

We have developed a tool called the Community Collaborative Assessment and Action Toolkit (CCAAT) that we use to provide customized support for community collaboratives. The CCAAT will help you assess your collaborative’s current state and provide tailored recommended actions that align with your needs and capacity. The CCAAT was adapted from evidence-based community readiness and collective impact readiness tools, and enhanced through CR’s expertise and experiences working with community collaboratives. It is basically a tailored “pulse-check” for your community collaborative! 

The CCAAT is implemented over three phases: (1) Understanding, (2) Interpretation and (3) Prioritization. 


The process begins with the completion of an evidence-based survey tool that assesses critical collaboration elements across five domains required to successfully move your community collaborative’s actions forward. The domains assessed include:

  • State of Collaboration

  • Group Foundations

  • Commitment 

  • Group Relationships

  • Evidence Informed Planning

This tool can be customized to your collaborative’s needs. For example, CR has recently supported the Nipissing Wellness Ontario Health Team with the CCAAT and the tool was customized to also include assessment of the provincially mandated OHT building blocks. 

Interpretation and Prioritization: 

Following data collection, CR will facilitate two sessions (virtually or in-person) to focus on gaining a shared understanding of the current state, and the root causes of the identified challenges. We will then work with you to develop and prioritize actions for short-term and long-term collaborative improvement implementation plans. We can provide you with a summary report and an infographic to support your continued improvement efforts. 

Why should CR lead this important work for you? 

CR recognizes that this type of group assessment and following conversations can sometimes be difficult to lead from within groups. As an objective third party, CR provides a safe and confidential space for group members to share their perspectives anonymously and maintain their confidentiality (through the survey tool) and functions as a neutral facilitator to create a welcoming and safe space to ensure that all perspectives are understood and captured (during the facilitations). Furthermore, we bring our extensive knowledge working with collaboratives across sectors to help you understand and develop meaningful strategies for improvement.

After numerous years supporting community collaboratives and truly understanding the roadblocks that they come up against, we are excited to launch this tool to get you unstuck. CR is passionate about supporting community collaboratives to truly make a difference. If you see a need for this within your own group, we would love to support your group with the CCAAT! 

Please reach out to Ishan if you would like to learn more about the CCAAT or any of CR’s other services, or for a customized estimate! 

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