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The SSRC Library allows visitors to access materials related to self-sufficiency programs, practice and research. Visitors can view common search terms, conduct a keyword search or create a custom search using any combination of the filters at the left side of this page. To conduct a keyword search, type a term or combination of terms into the search box below, select whether you want to search the exact phrase or the words in any order, and click on the blue button to the right of the search box to view relevant results.

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  • Individual Author: Hsueh, JoAnn; Farrell, Mary E.
    Reference Type: Report
    Year: 2012

    As part of the multisite Enhanced Services for the Hard-to-Employ Demonstration and Evaluation Project, MDRC, together with its research partners, is leading an evaluation of parental employment and educational services delivered within Early Head Start (Enhanced EHS). The program model tested here aims to dually address the employment and educational needs of parents who are at risk of unemployment and the developmental needs of their children. The study is sponsored by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, with additional funding from the U.S. Department of Labor.  The study uses a rigorous random assignment design comparing outcomes for families and  children who were offered Enhanced EHS with outcomes for those who could only access alternative services in the community. This report presents the final impact results approximately 42 months after families and children first entered the study. (author abstract)

    As part of the multisite Enhanced Services for the Hard-to-Employ Demonstration and Evaluation Project, MDRC, together with its research partners, is leading an evaluation of parental employment and educational services delivered within Early Head Start (Enhanced EHS). The program model tested here aims to dually address the employment and educational needs of parents who are at risk of unemployment and the developmental needs of their children. The study is sponsored by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, with additional funding from the U.S. Department of Labor.  The study uses a rigorous random assignment design comparing outcomes for families and  children who were offered Enhanced EHS with outcomes for those who could only access alternative services in the community. This report presents the final impact results approximately 42 months after families and children first entered the study. (author abstract)

  • Individual Author: Paulsell, Diane; Wood, Robert
    Reference Type: Report
    Year: 2016

    An established body of longitudinal research indicates that children fare best when they are raised in stable, low-conflict, two-parent families. Conversely, unhealthy relationships can put individuals and their children at risk. To help identify strategies for improving the delivery and effectiveness of healthy marriage and relationship education programs for adults and youth, the Office of Planning, Research and Evaluation (OPRE) within the Administration for Children and Families (ACF) has launched the Strengthening Relationship Education and Marriage Services (STREAMS) project, a multi-site, random assignment evaluation of these programs. OPRE has contracted with Mathematica Policy Research and its partner, Public Strategies, to design and conduct the study. (Author abstract)

    An established body of longitudinal research indicates that children fare best when they are raised in stable, low-conflict, two-parent families. Conversely, unhealthy relationships can put individuals and their children at risk. To help identify strategies for improving the delivery and effectiveness of healthy marriage and relationship education programs for adults and youth, the Office of Planning, Research and Evaluation (OPRE) within the Administration for Children and Families (ACF) has launched the Strengthening Relationship Education and Marriage Services (STREAMS) project, a multi-site, random assignment evaluation of these programs. OPRE has contracted with Mathematica Policy Research and its partner, Public Strategies, to design and conduct the study. (Author abstract)

  • Individual Author: Wood, Robert G.; Goesling, Brian; Paulsell, Diane
    Reference Type: Report
    Year: 2018

    The federal government has had a long-standing commitment to supporting healthy relationships and stable families. In the mid-1990s, Congress created the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) block grant, which had the formation and maintenance of two-parent families as one of its core purposes. TANF provided states with the funding and flexibility to support activities to promote healthy marriage. Beginning in the mid-2000s, the federal government began providing additional funding specifically to support healthy marriage and relationship education (HMRE) services. The Office of Family Assistance (OFA) in the Administration for Children & Families (ACF), U.S. Department of Health and Human Services oversees these funds and distributes them through a set of competitive multi-year grants to organizations nationwide. OFA made the most recent round of HMRE grant awards in September 2015. These grants support HMRE services for a mix of populations, including youth in high school, individual adults, and adult couples. (Author abstract) 

    The federal government has had a long-standing commitment to supporting healthy relationships and stable families. In the mid-1990s, Congress created the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) block grant, which had the formation and maintenance of two-parent families as one of its core purposes. TANF provided states with the funding and flexibility to support activities to promote healthy marriage. Beginning in the mid-2000s, the federal government began providing additional funding specifically to support healthy marriage and relationship education (HMRE) services. The Office of Family Assistance (OFA) in the Administration for Children & Families (ACF), U.S. Department of Health and Human Services oversees these funds and distributes them through a set of competitive multi-year grants to organizations nationwide. OFA made the most recent round of HMRE grant awards in September 2015. These grants support HMRE services for a mix of populations, including youth in high school, individual adults, and adult couples. (Author abstract) 

  • Individual Author: Friend, Daniel; Paulsell, Diane
    Reference Type: Report
    Year: 2018

    Introduction

    Healthy marriage and relationship education (HMRE) practitioners are increasingly interested in integrating relationship education workshops with economic stability services. In its most recent round of federal grant funding for HMRE services, the Office of Family Assistance (OFA) emphasized programs that offer both HMRE and economic stability services such as job and career advancement and financial literacy activities. Grantee staff must decide how to deliver services in each of these areas—either as separate workshops, integrated workshops, or a mix of the two.

    Purpose

    The Strengthening Relationship Education and Marriage Services (STREAMS) evaluation is a five-site, random assignment evaluation of HMRE programs funded by OFA, with evaluation sites selected from the current round of HMRE grantees. Two of the grantees participating in STREAMS operate programs that integrate HMRE and economic stability services. The STREAMS technical assistance team worked closely with both grantees to help refine and...

    Introduction

    Healthy marriage and relationship education (HMRE) practitioners are increasingly interested in integrating relationship education workshops with economic stability services. In its most recent round of federal grant funding for HMRE services, the Office of Family Assistance (OFA) emphasized programs that offer both HMRE and economic stability services such as job and career advancement and financial literacy activities. Grantee staff must decide how to deliver services in each of these areas—either as separate workshops, integrated workshops, or a mix of the two.

    Purpose

    The Strengthening Relationship Education and Marriage Services (STREAMS) evaluation is a five-site, random assignment evaluation of HMRE programs funded by OFA, with evaluation sites selected from the current round of HMRE grantees. Two of the grantees participating in STREAMS operate programs that integrate HMRE and economic stability services. The STREAMS technical assistance team worked closely with both grantees to help refine and strengthen their original program designs by drawing on findings from prior research. This brief describes how the grantees are integrating HMRE and economic stability services, with the goal of increasing participants’ exposure to both types of services.

    Key Findings and Highlights

    To integrate HMRE and economic stability services, the two grantees:

    • Used recruiting strategies to identify potential participants interested in both types of services
    • Adapted curricula to integrate HMRE and economic stability topics
    • Connected participants to one-on-one job and career advancement services

    Methods

    Integration strategies described in the brief are based on information gathered by the STREAMS technical assistance team during site visits and regular phone meetings with the grantees. Future reports from the STREAMS impact and process studies will describe how well these strategies worked in practice, yielding information that can be used to further refine the strategies to improve the delivery and effectiveness of HMRE programming. (Author abstract)

  • Individual Author: Avellar, Sarah; Covington, Reginald ; Moore, Quinn ; Patnaik, Ankita; Wu, April
    Reference Type: Report
    Year: 2018

    Children who are supported emotionally and financially by their fathers tend to fare better than those without such support. Despite wanting to be strong parents, providers, and partners, many fathers struggle to fulfill these roles. Recognizing both the importance of fathers and the challenges that they face, Congress has authorized and funded grants for fatherhood programs for more than a decade. The Office of Family Assistance (OFA), which is in the Administration for Children and Families (ACF) at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, awards and oversees these grants. ACF designed the responsible fatherhood (RF) grants to help fathers overcome barriers to effective and nurturing parenting, support their family formation and healthy relationships, and improve economic outcomes for themselves and their families.

    To learn more about the effectiveness of these programs, OFA funded, and ACF’s Office of Planning, Research, and Evaluation oversaw, a contract with Mathematica Policy Research to conduct the Parents and Children Together (PACT) evaluation. The PACT...

    Children who are supported emotionally and financially by their fathers tend to fare better than those without such support. Despite wanting to be strong parents, providers, and partners, many fathers struggle to fulfill these roles. Recognizing both the importance of fathers and the challenges that they face, Congress has authorized and funded grants for fatherhood programs for more than a decade. The Office of Family Assistance (OFA), which is in the Administration for Children and Families (ACF) at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, awards and oversees these grants. ACF designed the responsible fatherhood (RF) grants to help fathers overcome barriers to effective and nurturing parenting, support their family formation and healthy relationships, and improve economic outcomes for themselves and their families.

    To learn more about the effectiveness of these programs, OFA funded, and ACF’s Office of Planning, Research, and Evaluation oversaw, a contract with Mathematica Policy Research to conduct the Parents and Children Together (PACT) evaluation. The PACT RF impact study was a large-scale, random assignment examination of four federally funded RF programs that received grants in 2011. This report discusses the impacts of those programs on fathers’ parenting, relationships, economic stability, and well-being about one year after the fathers enrolled.

    The evaluation team selected four grantees to participate in the PACT RF study: (1) Connections to Success in Kansas and Missouri, (2) Fathers’ Support Center in Missouri, (3) FATHER Project at Goodwill–Easter Seals Minnesota, and (4) Urban Ventures in Minnesota. As required by ACF, the RF grantees offered services in three areas: (1) parenting and fatherhood, (2) healthy marriage and relationships, and (3) economic stability.

    In each RF program in PACT, group-based workshops were a core service for delivering much of the required content. Facilitators in the workshops led fathers in discussions about topics such as the meaning of fatherhood, child development, co-parenting, and finding and retaining employment. Grantees based their workshops mostly on published curricula on parenting and healthy marriage, but they developed their own curricula for economic stability services. Grantees also offered individualized support to help fathers with economic stability—for example, at three of the four programs, specialized employment staff met one on one with participants. All four programs in PACT also covered personal development topics, such as coping with stress, responding to discrimination, problem solving, self-sufficiency, and goal planning.

    The typical father in the PACT RF study was a disadvantaged man of color in his thirties. Of the men enrolled, 77% were African American, and 6% were Hispanic. They each had two or three children on average. Nearly half (46%) had children with multiple women. Before enrolling in the study, fathers’ average monthly earnings were $378, less than half the weekly earnings of the average full-time worker in the U.S. (Author introduction)

     

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