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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: Schultz, Caroline; Elliot, Mark; McKernon, Signe-Mary; Lehman, Gretchen
    Reference Type: Conference Paper
    Year: 2016

    This video from the 2016 Research and Evaluation Conference on Self-Sufficiency (RECS) includes presentations of findings from three programs intended to promote financial empowerment. Panelists discussed the implications of these findings for policy and practice in expanding economic opportunity.

    This video from the 2016 Research and Evaluation Conference on Self-Sufficiency (RECS) includes presentations of findings from three programs intended to promote financial empowerment. Panelists discussed the implications of these findings for policy and practice in expanding economic opportunity.

  • Individual Author: Roman, Caterina G. ; Link, Nathan
    Reference Type: Report
    Year: 2015

    Former prisoners are increasingly facing the burden of financial debt associated with legal and criminal justice obligations in the U.S., yet little research has pursued how— theoretically or empirically—the burden of debt might affect key outcomes in prisoner reentry. To address the limited research, we examine the impact that having legal child support (CS) obligations has on employment and recidivism using data from the Serious and Violent Offender Reentry Initiative (SVORI). In this report we describe the characteristics of adult male returning prisoners with child support orders and debt, and examine whether participation in SVORI was associated with greater services receipt than those in the comparison groups (for relevant services such as child-support services, employment preparation, and financial and legal assistance).

    We also examine the lagged impacts that child support obligations, legal employment and rearrest have on each other. Results from the crossed lagged panel model using GSEM in STATA indicate that while having child support debt...

    Former prisoners are increasingly facing the burden of financial debt associated with legal and criminal justice obligations in the U.S., yet little research has pursued how— theoretically or empirically—the burden of debt might affect key outcomes in prisoner reentry. To address the limited research, we examine the impact that having legal child support (CS) obligations has on employment and recidivism using data from the Serious and Violent Offender Reentry Initiative (SVORI). In this report we describe the characteristics of adult male returning prisoners with child support orders and debt, and examine whether participation in SVORI was associated with greater services receipt than those in the comparison groups (for relevant services such as child-support services, employment preparation, and financial and legal assistance).

    We also examine the lagged impacts that child support obligations, legal employment and rearrest have on each other. Results from the crossed lagged panel model using GSEM in STATA indicate that while having child support debt does not appear to influence employment significantly, it does show a marginally significant protective effect—former prisoners who have child support obligations are less likely to be arrested after release from prison than those who do not have obligations. We discuss the findings within the framework of past and emerging theoretical work on desistance from crime. We also discuss the implications for prisoner reentry policy and practice. (Author abstract)

  • Individual Author: Sabol, Terri J. ; Sommer, Teresa E.; Chase-Lansdale, Linsday; Brooks-Gunn, Jeanne; Yoshikawa, Hirokazu; King, Christopher T. ; Kathawalla, Ummul; Alamuddin, Rayane; Gomez, Celia J.; Ross, Emily C.
    Reference Type: Journal Article
    Year: 2015

    Two-generation programs provide education and training services for parents while their children attend early childhood education programs. This study examines the rates of persistence and certification of parents in one of the only two-generation interventions in the country under study, CareerAdvance®, which offers training in the healthcare sector to parents while their children attend Head Start (n = 92). Results indicate that 16 months after enrolling in CareerAdvance®, 76% of participants attained at least one workforce-applicable certificate of the program and 59% were still in the program. The majority of parents who left the program during the 16 months had attained a certificate (68%). Parents with high levels of material hardship were more likely to attain a certificate and stay enrolled in the program, and parents with higher levels of psychological distress were less likely to attain a certificate in the same time period. Implications for future two-generation programming are discussed. (Author abstract)

    Two-generation programs provide education and training services for parents while their children attend early childhood education programs. This study examines the rates of persistence and certification of parents in one of the only two-generation interventions in the country under study, CareerAdvance®, which offers training in the healthcare sector to parents while their children attend Head Start (n = 92). Results indicate that 16 months after enrolling in CareerAdvance®, 76% of participants attained at least one workforce-applicable certificate of the program and 59% were still in the program. The majority of parents who left the program during the 16 months had attained a certificate (68%). Parents with high levels of material hardship were more likely to attain a certificate and stay enrolled in the program, and parents with higher levels of psychological distress were less likely to attain a certificate in the same time period. Implications for future two-generation programming are discussed. (Author abstract)

  • Individual Author: Aizer, Anna; Eli, Shari; Ferrie, Joseph P.; Lleras-Muney, Adriana
    Reference Type: Report
    Year: 2014

    We estimate the long-run impact of cash transfers to poor families on children's longevity, educational attainment, nutritional status, and income in adulthood. To do so, we collected individual-level administrative records of applicants to the Mothers' Pension program--the first government-sponsored welfare program in the US (1911-1935) --and matched them to census, WWII and death records. Male children of accepted applicants lived one year longer than those of rejected mothers. Male children of accepted mothers received one-third more years of schooling, were less likely to be underweight, and had higher income in adulthood than children of rejected mothers. (author abstract)

    We estimate the long-run impact of cash transfers to poor families on children's longevity, educational attainment, nutritional status, and income in adulthood. To do so, we collected individual-level administrative records of applicants to the Mothers' Pension program--the first government-sponsored welfare program in the US (1911-1935) --and matched them to census, WWII and death records. Male children of accepted applicants lived one year longer than those of rejected mothers. Male children of accepted mothers received one-third more years of schooling, were less likely to be underweight, and had higher income in adulthood than children of rejected mothers. (author abstract)

  • Individual Author: Wood, Robert G.; Moore, Quinn; Clarkwest, Andrew
    Reference Type: Report
    Year: 2011

    Building Strong Families (BSF), a program of relationship skills education for unwed parents, has been found in a rigorous random assignment evaluation to have limited effects on couples who signed up for the program (Wood, McConnell, et al. 2010). Averaging results across the eight local programs that participated in the evaluation, BSF had no effect on the couples’ relationship quality or on the likelihood that they would remain romantically involved or get married 15 months after they enrolled in the program. When impacts were examined separately for the eight programs, only one was found to have a consistent pattern of positive effects on couples’ relationships, while another was found to have negative effects.

    These results, however, leave us with an unanswered question of wide interest, because not all couples randomly assigned to receive BSF services actually participated. The core BSF service was group workshops on relationship skills, and across all evaluation sites about 45 percent of the couples assigned to the program group never attended even one workshop...

    Building Strong Families (BSF), a program of relationship skills education for unwed parents, has been found in a rigorous random assignment evaluation to have limited effects on couples who signed up for the program (Wood, McConnell, et al. 2010). Averaging results across the eight local programs that participated in the evaluation, BSF had no effect on the couples’ relationship quality or on the likelihood that they would remain romantically involved or get married 15 months after they enrolled in the program. When impacts were examined separately for the eight programs, only one was found to have a consistent pattern of positive effects on couples’ relationships, while another was found to have negative effects.

    These results, however, leave us with an unanswered question of wide interest, because not all couples randomly assigned to receive BSF services actually participated. The core BSF service was group workshops on relationship skills, and across all evaluation sites about 45 percent of the couples assigned to the program group never attended even one workshop session. BSF was a voluntary program and voluntary programs, particularly those serving low-income families, often have low participation rates (McCurdy and Daro 2001; Myers et al. 1992; Garvey et al. 2006). Even so, it is natural to ask whether BSF had any effects on the couples who did attend group sessions.

    The analysis finds no strong evidence of effects on couples who attended group sessions. Among those who attended at least one group session, there were no statistically significant effects on the key relationship outcomes. Among the smaller group of couples who attended at least half of the group sessions offered, there was no strong evidence of effects, with one exception. BSF appears to have increased the likelihood that these couples would be living together (married or unmarried) at the 15-month follow-up—with an impact on this outcome of 7 to 10 percentage points. (author abstract)

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