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Implementing Mothers’ Advocates in the Community (MOSAIC)

Prerequisites for Implementation

Last Updated

July 2013

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Type of Implementing Agency

The model developers, at La Trobe University and the University of Melbourne in Australia, oversaw and supported program implementation.

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Staffing Requirements

MOSAIC developers recruited eight maternal and child health (MCH) nursing teams covering 82 MCH clinics and 27 general practice (GP) clinicians in 24 practices to provide program referrals. The developers also appointed two mentor coordinators to select, train, and oversee “mentor mothers,” or nonprofessional peer mothers who conducted home visits and other outreach. Mentor mothers had to be available at least two hours per week. Mentors who supported more than one woman were offered payment.

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Staff Education and Experience

Mentor mothers were mothers themselves who resided in the northwest Melbourne suburbs and demonstrated both strong listening skills and a mentoring approach that was compassionate, open, and nonjudgmental. MOSAIC did not establish education requirements for mentors.

Coordinators were required to possess a graduate qualification in community development, social work, or other relevant qualification, or substantial experience in community service. They were also required to have knowledge of parenting skills, the needs of women and children experiencing IPV, and the impact of IPV on young children; experience working with culturally and linguistically diverse communities; experience supervising, training, or managing volunteers; and excellent communication and liaison skills.

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Supervision Requirements

MOSAIC coordinators matched participants with mentors and attended the initial meeting between mothers and mentors to facilitate a mutual understanding and agreement about roles, responsibilities, goals, and boundaries. Mentors were encouraged to alert coordinators when their visits were challenging or when they needed information support.

Coordinators held four quarterly reviews with the participants to solicit their feelings about the mentoring relationship. Participants also could contact the coordinator at any time to discuss their relationship with their mentor. Coordinators reviewed biweekly contact sheets that mentor mothers used to document progress with each participant. If the coordinator felt that feedback was unsatisfactory or incomplete, or if she were concerned about the welfare of the mentor or participant, the coordinator would contact the mentor.

Coordinators held six to eight meetings during which mentor mothers could share their successes and challenges. The meetings included support from both peers and coordinators, as well as information sessions. On occasion, guest speakers would discuss issues of interest, such as new laws about family violence.

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Staff Ratio Requirements

There were 2 mentor coordinators and 32 mentors who were paired with a mother. Mentors chose whether to support one or more than one mother; many elected to support one mother.

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Data Systems/Technology Requirements

Information about participants (including their background, contacts made with the program, and safety issues); mentor mothers (including background information and program contacts); and referrers (including their names and contact information) was stored in a Microsoft Access database. Additionally, mentor mothers received prepaid mobile phones that could not be traced to them to ensure their safety while communicating with participants and coordinators.

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Notes

The information contained on this page was last updated in July 2013. Recommended Further Reading lists the sources for this information.

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