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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: Knox, Virginia; Redcross, Cindy
    Reference Type: Report
    Year: 2000

    For the past two decades, the nation's efforts to reform the welfare system and the child support system have often proceeded on separate tracks. However, there has been a growing realization that neither has very explicitly considered how to work with the group of men who bridge them both: low-income noncustodial fathers whose children receive welfare. The Parents' Fair Share (PFS) Demonstration, run from 1994 to 1996, was aimed at increasing the ability of these fathers to attain well-paying jobs, increase their child support payments — to increase their involvement in parenting in other ways. These reports — one examining the effectiveness of the PFS approach at increasing fathers' financial and nonfinancial involvement with their children and the other examining the effectiveness of the PFS approach at increasing fathers' employment and earnings — provide important insights into policies aimed at this key group. (author abstract)

    For the past two decades, the nation's efforts to reform the welfare system and the child support system have often proceeded on separate tracks. However, there has been a growing realization that neither has very explicitly considered how to work with the group of men who bridge them both: low-income noncustodial fathers whose children receive welfare. The Parents' Fair Share (PFS) Demonstration, run from 1994 to 1996, was aimed at increasing the ability of these fathers to attain well-paying jobs, increase their child support payments — to increase their involvement in parenting in other ways. These reports — one examining the effectiveness of the PFS approach at increasing fathers' financial and nonfinancial involvement with their children and the other examining the effectiveness of the PFS approach at increasing fathers' employment and earnings — provide important insights into policies aimed at this key group. (author abstract)

  • Individual Author: Greene, Angela D.; Moore, Kristin A.
    Reference Type: Report, Journal Article
    Year: 2000

    This study uses early descriptive data from the National Evaluation of Welfare to Work Strategies (NEWWS) Child Outcome Study, a sub-study of the larger random assignment evaluation of the Federal JOBS program, to answer two timely and important questions. First, what factors predict father involvement among nonresident fathers of young children who receive welfare? And second, is nonresident father involvement associated with better outcomes for these children? The three measures of nonresident father involvement examined are father-child visitation, formal child support payments received through the welfare office, and informal child support, such as money given directly to the mother, groceries, clothes, or other items. Findings reveal that while only 16.6% of fathers provided child support through the formal system during the past year, a considerably larger proportion, 42.3%, provided informal child support, and 67% visited at least once in the past year. Informal support and father-child visitation are the most highly correlated forms of involvement, and they share many of...

    This study uses early descriptive data from the National Evaluation of Welfare to Work Strategies (NEWWS) Child Outcome Study, a sub-study of the larger random assignment evaluation of the Federal JOBS program, to answer two timely and important questions. First, what factors predict father involvement among nonresident fathers of young children who receive welfare? And second, is nonresident father involvement associated with better outcomes for these children? The three measures of nonresident father involvement examined are father-child visitation, formal child support payments received through the welfare office, and informal child support, such as money given directly to the mother, groceries, clothes, or other items. Findings reveal that while only 16.6% of fathers provided child support through the formal system during the past year, a considerably larger proportion, 42.3%, provided informal child support, and 67% visited at least once in the past year. Informal support and father-child visitation are the most highly correlated forms of involvement, and they share many of the same predictors. Only two predictors are significant and in the same direction for all three measures of nonresident father involvement. Father's residence in the same state as the focal child and the provision of support for the child from the father's family are associated with a higher likelihood of his involvement. In general, findings for the child well-being measures show that monetary and material contributions from the father, especially contributions provided informally, are positively associated with more positive child well-being outcomes. (author abstract)
    
    This article was adapted from a report developed by Child Trends October 1996.

  • Individual Author: McLanahan, Sara S.; Carlson, Marcia J.
    Reference Type: Journal Article
    Year: 2002

    Recognizing that most poor families are single-parent families, the federal welfare reform law of 1996 emphasized the responsibility of both parents to support their children. In addition to strengthening the child support enforcement system, the law included several provisions designed to decrease childbearing outside of marriage and to promote two-parent families. This article focuses on the important role that fathers play in children's lives and how public policies have affected childbearing and father involvement. Key observations are:

    • Compared with children living with both biological parents, children in father-absent families often have fewer economic and socioemotional resources from their parents, and do not fare as well on many outcome measures.
    • Efforts to reduce the rising number of father-absent families by focusing on preventing unwanted pregnancy among unmarried women, especially teen girls, have met with some success; those programs seeking to alter adolescents' life opportunities in addition to providing education or family planning services...

    Recognizing that most poor families are single-parent families, the federal welfare reform law of 1996 emphasized the responsibility of both parents to support their children. In addition to strengthening the child support enforcement system, the law included several provisions designed to decrease childbearing outside of marriage and to promote two-parent families. This article focuses on the important role that fathers play in children's lives and how public policies have affected childbearing and father involvement. Key observations are:

    • Compared with children living with both biological parents, children in father-absent families often have fewer economic and socioemotional resources from their parents, and do not fare as well on many outcome measures.
    • Efforts to reduce the rising number of father-absent families by focusing on preventing unwanted pregnancy among unmarried women, especially teen girls, have met with some success; those programs seeking to alter adolescents' life opportunities in addition to providing education or family planning services appear to hold the most promise.
    • Efforts to encourage greater father involvement by focusing almost exclusively on increasing absent parents' child support payments reap only minimal benefits for poor children because their absent parents often have few resources and little incentive to make support payments.
    • To date, efforts to increase the emotional involvement of unmarried fathers with their children have produced disappointing results, but new research suggests that such programs can make a difference when targeting fathers at the time of a child's birth.

    Many children spend some time living away from their fathers, deprived of the financial and emotional resources they can provide. Because of the importance of fathers to child well-being, the authors conclude that new directions in research and public policies are needed to encourage greater father involvement across the wide diversity of family arrangements in society today. (author abstract)

  • Individual Author: Curran, Laura
    Year: 2003

    In recent years social welfare policies and practices have increasingly addressed men's roles as fathers. The landmark welfare reform legislation, the Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act of 1996 (PRWORA) (P.L. 104-193), contains significant revisions in child support legislation. Rapid growth has occurred in the number of social services programs working with fathers. This article introduces social workers to these policy and practice initiatives. Through a critical review of research and descriptive programmatic material, this article considers the mixed implications of these policy and practice interventions for family well-being and recommends future directions for policy and practice.(author abstract)

    In recent years social welfare policies and practices have increasingly addressed men's roles as fathers. The landmark welfare reform legislation, the Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act of 1996 (PRWORA) (P.L. 104-193), contains significant revisions in child support legislation. Rapid growth has occurred in the number of social services programs working with fathers. This article introduces social workers to these policy and practice initiatives. Through a critical review of research and descriptive programmatic material, this article considers the mixed implications of these policy and practice interventions for family well-being and recommends future directions for policy and practice.(author abstract)

  • Individual Author: Clayton, Obie; Mincy, Ronald; Blankenhorn, David
    Reference Type: Book Chapter/Book
    Year: 2003

    The majority of African American children live in homes without their fathers, but the proportion of African American children living in intact, two-parent families has risen significantly since 1995. Black Fathers in Contemporary American Society looks at father absence from two sides, offering an in-depth analysis of how the absence of African American fathers affects their children, their relationships, and society as a whole, while countering the notion that father absence and family fragmentation within the African American community is inevitable.

    Editors Obie Clayton, Ronald B. Mincy, and David Blankenhorn lead a diverse group of contributors encompassing a range of disciplines and ideological perspectives who all agree that father absence among black families is one of the most pressing social problems today. In part I, the contributors offer possible explanations for the decline in marriage among African American families. William Julius Wilson believes that many men who live in the inner city no longer consider marriage an option because their limited economic...

    The majority of African American children live in homes without their fathers, but the proportion of African American children living in intact, two-parent families has risen significantly since 1995. Black Fathers in Contemporary American Society looks at father absence from two sides, offering an in-depth analysis of how the absence of African American fathers affects their children, their relationships, and society as a whole, while countering the notion that father absence and family fragmentation within the African American community is inevitable.

    Editors Obie Clayton, Ronald B. Mincy, and David Blankenhorn lead a diverse group of contributors encompassing a range of disciplines and ideological perspectives who all agree that father absence among black families is one of the most pressing social problems today. In part I, the contributors offer possible explanations for the decline in marriage among African American families. William Julius Wilson believes that many men who live in the inner city no longer consider marriage an option because their limited economic prospects do not enable them to provide for a family. Part II considers marriage from an economic perspective, emphasizing that it is in part a wealth-producing institution. Maggie Gallagher points out that married people earn, invest, and save more than single people, and that when marriage rates are low in a community, it is the children who suffer most. In part III, the contributors discuss policies to reduce absentee fatherhood. Wornie Reed demonstrates how public health interventions, such as personal development workshops and work-related skill-building services, can be used to address the causes of fatherlessness. Wade Horn illustrates the positive results achieved by fatherhood programs, especially when held early in a man's life. In the last chapter, Enola Aird notes that from 1995 to 2000, the proportion of African American children living in two-parent, married couple homes rose from 34.8 to 38.9 percent; a significant increase indicating the possible reversal of the long-term shift toward black family fragmentation.

    Black Fathers in Contemporary American Society provides an in-depth look at a problem affecting millions of children while offering proof that the trend of father absence is not irrevocable. (author abstract) 

    Chapter 1: The Woes of the Inner-City African American Father - William Julius Wilson

    Chapter 2: Marriage and Fatherhood in the Lives of African American Men - Steven Nock

    Chapter 3: The Marriage Mystery: Marriage, Assets, and the Expectations of African American Families - Ronald Mincy and Hillard Pouncy

    Chapter 4: The Marriage Gap: How and Why Marriage Creates Wealth and Boosts the Well-Being of Adults - Maggie Gallagher

    Chapter 5: The Effects of Crime and Imprisonment on Family Formation - Obie Clayton and Joan Moore

    Chapter 6: Building a Fatherhood Movement in South Carolina - Barbara Morrison-Rodriguez

    Chapter 7: Fatherlessness in African American Families: Primary, Secondary, and Tertiary Prevention - Wornie Reed

    Chapter 8: Is it Working? Early Evaluations of Fatherhood-Renewal Programs - Wade Horn

    Chapter 9: Making the Wounded Whole: Marriage as Civil Right and Civic Responsibility - Enola Aird 

     

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