MDRC Offering Free Consultations to Nonprofits and Public Agencies to Support Program Adaptation During the Pandemic


John Martinez

Melissa Wavelet

The COVID-19 pandemic has put an unprecedented strain on the organizations and systems that our most vulnerable individuals and families rely on for assistance and support. It has also highlighted longstanding racial and social inequities in who is affected most by economic and health crises — and in the way that our systems respond to this inequity.

Over the last seven months, we have also been busy listening to our many partners on the ground — school districts, nonprofit providers, and government agencies — to learn how we can be helpful to them. As a start, we’ve been able to develop a set of more than 30 COVID-related resources, including profiles of program innovations during the pandemic, tips and strategies for practitioners, and policy options for recovery.

Our research, evaluation, and technical assistance experts are also offering free, brief consultations for public and nonprofit agencies to explore how you are meeting the emerging needs of families, adults, students, and at-risk youth during the COVID-19 pandemic. These consultations could potentially generate more in-depth engagements.

Examples could include:

  • develop analytical strategies and identify the right analytic tools to inform program improvement or to answer particular questions,
  • offer advice on protecting participants confidentiality while supporting them remotely,
  • explore how to make communications clear and concise and to simplify application processes through the use of behavioral science research insights, 
  • revisit your plan for remote service delivery as the pandemic continues, and 
  • assess how your data collection methods and information systems along with your learning agendas and evaluation plans may need to change.

Nonprofits interested in a free consultation should contact John Martinez, City, county, or state agencies seeking a free consultation should contact Melissa Wavelet,