Academic journal article Family Relations

Two Generation Programs for Families in Poverty: A New Intervention Strategy

Academic journal article Family Relations

Two Generation Programs for Families in Poverty: A New Intervention Strategy

Article excerpt

Smith, Sheila. (Ed.). (1995). Two Generation Programs for Families in Poverty: A New Intervention Strategy. Norwood, NJ: Ablex Publishing. Paperback ISBN 1-56750100-1, price $24.50.

This edited volume describes five social service programs that integrate two types of family supports: (a) selfsufficiency services intended to improve the human capital and employability of parents with young children and (b) child development services such as the provision of high quality child care, preventive health care, and parenting education. In light of the multitude of problems confronted by many poor families with children, these two generation programs provide more comprehensive services than most welfare-to-work or child development programs.

The models reviewed in this book include: the Even Start Family Literacy Program, the Advance Parent-Child Education Program, New Chance, the Comprehensive Child Development Program, and Head Start Family Service Centers. Although each of these programs provides self-sufficiency services for adults and contains a child development component, the programs are remarkably different in the specific services provided, their target populations, their delivery mechanisms, and the duration of treatments. When evaluation data are available, they are presented, but most of the chapters simply describe the program models and client characteristics. One common theme is that the recruitment of clients and their continued participation in these programs present important challenges to program administrators.

The extent to which each of these programs adheres to the key principles of effective child development programs is also reviewed. The authors of this chapter conclude that the two-generation intervention strategy is a promising approach to supporting long-term developmental gains in at-risk children and improving the life prospects of their parents. …

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