RAISE Families for Health

RAISE logo with black lettering that says RAISE Families for Health



Health and well-being are shaped from a very early age. Factors such as stress, tobacco use, sleep, nutrition, and physical activity play a role in determining how children grow and develop, their health as adults, and even the health of future generations. We developed our RAISE Families for Health Program to meet the pressing challenge of interrupting the intergenerational cycle of poor health and disease within the most underserved populations.

With support from the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment, BHWP piloted and evaluated RAISE Families for Health in partnership with Sheridan Health Services, a federally qualified integrated-care clinic operated through the CU School of Nursing. RAISE was later expanded to two additional social service demonstration sites in Larimer County, The Matthews House and The Center for Family Outreach.


A comprehensive evaluation examined the reach, effectiveness, acceptability, and sustainability of the program as a whole, as well as the costs and benefits of embedding tobacco prevention and cessation programming into an intervention focused more generally on “whole health and wellness” for families. Through interviews, focus groups, surveys, EMR records, and attendance records, our mixed methods evaluation focused on outcomes at multiple levels: 1) organizational (i.e. changes in organizational readiness to implement tobacco cessation and wellness services, initiatives, and policies) 2) provider (i.e. changes in self-reported attitudes, knowledge and behaviors related to tobacco cessation and wellness services) and 3) client (i.e. RAISE group referrals and attendance, engagement, and satisfaction, self-reported progress meeting tobacco and wellness goals, reported family-level impacts of group participation).


Additional demonstration sites in Larimer County presented an opportunity to conduct a more expanded evaluation of the implementation process of the RAISE Families for Health Program across different types of agencies. To compare the implementation processes, successes, challenges, and lessons learned across sites, we conducted a series of focus groups and key informant interviews with former RAISE participants, individuals in relevant organizational leadership positions, and RAISE facilitators across all three sites. Findings informed key recommendations for future program scaling and sustainability in Colorado.