Educate Residents about MTW
The more information residents receive about the MTW activities the MTW agency plans to implement, the better able they will be to:
- Understand the vision and goals,
- Identify and express their concerns, and
- Make informed choices about decisions that affect them.
MTW’s Purpose and Goals
It is important to educate residents about the long-term vision and goals the MTW agency expects to achieve through MTW. For example:
- Explain how the MTW agency’s MTW activities fit into the long-term, national-level purposes and goals of the MTW program, which include protecting residents from hardship.
- Explain how the flexibilities that MTW allows meets these larger program goals and frees up funding for other programming that can benefit residents.
- Help residents understand that MTW is not designed to remove them from programs but rather to offer a steppingstone to independence, allowing families on the waiting list the opportunity to benefit from the program.
- Clarify for residents what MTW cannot achieve so that realistic expectations are set.
How MTW Will Affect Residents
Efforts to introduce MTW to the community likely will surface residents’ fears and anxieties about how they will be directly affected—Will I have to move? Will I lose my benefits? Providing the facts helps keep residents from making assumptions about how MTW activities may negatively affect them based on a name, terminology used, or past experiences.
While it may be impractical to identify exactly how every individual resident will be affected by MTW activities, provide realistic, concrete examples and scenarios that illustrate what exactly the activity will mean for residents in different types of situations. Specific examples resonate better and help residents “see themselves” in the activities.