Arnall Family Foundation Announces $1 Million Transportation Innovation Grant Winner

by | Mar 28, 2019

OKLAHOMA CITY – The Arnall Family Foundation recently announced the Community Transportation Association of America (CTAA) as the winner of its $1 million Transportation Innovation Grant focused on improving transportation for families in Oklahoma County who have children in the foster care system. CTAA, in partnership with EMBARK and the Oklahoma Transit Association, will develop a pilot program that increases parent-child reunifications in Oklahoma County through innovative transportation delivery.

“We’re thrilled to be part of a team tailoring innovative transportation solutions to the challenge of increasing biological parent-child reunifications in Oklahoma County’s foster care system,” said CTAA Executive Director Scott Bogren. “Effective public transportation must create real outcomes in the communities it serves and this is a great opportunity to do exactly that.”

As the lead agency, CTAA will leverage its transportation and social service experience in human-centered design to implement the winning approach which included mobility management services, technology integration, on-demand rides, driver training and incentives. One-on-one coaching for the biological parents will be provided by a mobility manager. Participants will receive an individualized transportation plan that will accommodate child visitation, scheduled classes and therapy sessions, and court hearings. Planned, as well as unanticipated trips that fulfill the parents’ DHS-required services, will be scheduled through a custom mobile application. Approved rides will be available by a variety of vetted and trained providers. EMBARK, CTAA’s on-the-ground transit partner, will provide free trips on its fixed-route system to reward participants who meet monthly progress benchmarks.

“We’re partnering with some of the most passionate organizations to help ensure some of our most vulnerable families grow stronger,” said Jason Ferbrache, EMBARK administrator. “The opportunity to connect families and strengthen our community is at the heart of what we do. We can’t wait to get started.”

CTAA’s previous experience includes supporting a team through the National Center for Mobility Management (NCMM) in Fort Worth, Texas in developing transportation connections for former prostitutes and substance abusers to appointments with the court system and social service programs. In Michigan, CTAA is working closely with a team to create a transportation service to help participants in the drug court system connect to their multiple required appointments.

“I want to thank CTAA for their thoughtful, creative approach to using transportation to improve social outcomes,” said Sue Ann Arnall, president of the Arnall Family Foundation. “Their previous experience developing transportation solutions for social service as well as their collaborative approach with local partners made them the clear winner.”

Last August, the foundation, in partnership with Oklahoma City Mayor David Holt and the Oklahoma Department of Human Services announced the Transportation Innovation Grant. The winning organization would have four years and $1 million to develop a pilot program for improving transportation for parents in Oklahoma County who have had their children removed and are working toward reunification. The pilot will include evaluation to measure how rates and time to reunification are impacted for those participating in the program.

About the Arnall Family Foundation

Founded in 2015, The Arnall Family Foundation seeks to make lasting, transformative improvements to the systems and programs in Oklahoma County that serve children and families involved with child welfare as well as criminal justice reform through results-driven investments and strategic convening of community partners. The Arnall Family Foundation also operates the WaterShed Animal Fund which invests in innovative programs with exemplary institutions and individuals to better the lives of companion animals. For more information, visit www.arnallfamilyfoundation.org.

About the Community Transportation Association of America

The Community Transportation Association, established in 1989, is a national non-profit, membership association committed to removing barriers to isolation and improving mobility for all people. The Association provides informational resources, technical assistance, training and certification, and many additional resources to communities, transportation providers, and other groups to increase mobility and improve the quality of community and public transportation.

About EMBARK

EMBARK provides bus, ferry transit, bike share and downtown parking solutions in the Oklahoma City metro area. Our transportation options connect people with their community, while easing traffic congestion and reducing air pollution. To learn more about EMBARK and view schedules and routes, visit www.embarkok.com or call (405) 235-RIDE (7433) for personal assistance.

About the Oklahoma Transit Association

Founded in 1983, the Oklahoma Transit Association’s (OTA) membership is comprised of the 34 urban, small urban, suburban, rural and tribal transit agencies in the state who share the common priority of providing and improving mobility and access for all Oklahoman’s. OTA’s mission is to support public transit through advocacy, education, communication and partnerships.