Objectives: To describe a project that used mini-grants plus technical assistance to disseminate evidence-based programs, to understand how the project worked in different settings, and to generate recommendations for future programming and evaluation.
Design: Process evaluation using program records, activity forms completed by grantees, interviews, and focus groups.
Setting: Churches and worksites in rural, southwest Georgia.
Participants: Site coordinators (n = 10), organizational leaders (n = 7), and project committee members (n = 25) involved in program implementation at 7 funded organizations.
Intervention: The Emory Cancer Prevention and Control Research Network solicited applications from churches and worksites to implement one of 2 evidence-based nutrition programs: Body & Soul for churches and Treatwell 5-a-Day for worksites. Successful applicants (n = 7) received funding and technical assistance from Emory and agreed to conduct all required elements of the evidence-based program.
Main Outcome Measures: We assessed adoption, reach, implementation, and maintenance of specific programs and their core elements, as well as contextual influences and the resources required to implement the mini-grants program.
Results: Four of the 7 funded organizations conducted all programmatic core elements; all 7 sites conducted at least 6 of 8 core elements, including at least 1 food-related policy or environmental change as a result of the program. Program reach varied widely across sites and core elements. All site coordinators stated that they intend to continue at least some of the activities conducted under the project. Sites reported that contextual factors such as the program's fit with the organization's mission, leadership support, and leadership or staffing transitions influenced program implementation. Over 18 months, Emory staff spent 47.7 hours providing technical assistance to grantees.
Conclusions: A mini-grants and technical assistance model has the potential to be an effective mechanism for disseminating evidence-based programs to community organizations, and further study of this method is warranted.