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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: Quint, Janet; Bos, Johannes; Polit, Denise
    Reference Type: Report
    Year: 1997

    New Chance, a national research and demonstration program that operated between 1989 and 1992, was developed in a policy context marked by intense concern about teenage childbearing. That concern reflected the public's distress about three developments: the dramatic increase in the rate of out-of-wedlock childbearing over the past three decades, the long-term welfare costs incurred by young, poor women who become mothers, and the negative life prospects faced by their children. Little was known, however, about what kinds of programs and policies could help young mothers on welfare attain economic independence and could foster their children's development as well.

    The New Chance Demonstration was a rare and important opportunity to test the value of comprehensive services in assisting a disadvantaged group of families headed by young mothers who had first given birth as teenagers, who had dropped out of high school, and who were receiving Aid to Families with Dependent Children (AFDC). The program, which operated in 16 locations (or "sites") in 10 states across...

    New Chance, a national research and demonstration program that operated between 1989 and 1992, was developed in a policy context marked by intense concern about teenage childbearing. That concern reflected the public's distress about three developments: the dramatic increase in the rate of out-of-wedlock childbearing over the past three decades, the long-term welfare costs incurred by young, poor women who become mothers, and the negative life prospects faced by their children. Little was known, however, about what kinds of programs and policies could help young mothers on welfare attain economic independence and could foster their children's development as well.

    The New Chance Demonstration was a rare and important opportunity to test the value of comprehensive services in assisting a disadvantaged group of families headed by young mothers who had first given birth as teenagers, who had dropped out of high school, and who were receiving Aid to Families with Dependent Children (AFDC). The program, which operated in 16 locations (or "sites") in 10 states across the country, sought to help the young mothers acquire educational and vocational credentials and skills so that they could secure jobs offering opportunities for advancement and could thereby reduce, and eventually eliminate, their use of welfare. It also sought to motivate and assist participants in postponing additional childbearing and to help them become better parents. Finally, New Chance was explicitly "two-generational" in its approach, seeking to enhance the cognitive abilities, health, and socioemotional well-being of enrollees' children. The program was, for the most part, voluntary; that is, young women were generally not required to attend in order to receive public assistance. Instead, most joined it because they wanted to earn their General Educational Development (GED, or high school equivalency) certificates and the program offered free child care to enable them to participate.

    To evaluate the program's effectiveness, young women who applied and were determined to be eligible for New Chance were randomly assigned to one of two groups: the experimental group, whose members could enroll in the program, or the control group, whose members could not join New Chance but could receive other services available in their communities. To ascertain both short- and longer-term program effects, comparable information was collected from each member of both groups through in-home survey interviews conducted approximately 1½ and 3½ years after the individual had been randomly assigned. The measured average differences between the two groups' outcomes over time (such as their differences in rates of GED attainment, employment, or subsequent childbearing) and between the outcomes for their children are the observed results (or impacts) of New Chance. This, the final report on the New Chance program and its impacts, examines the trajectories of 2,079 young mothers who responded to the 3½-year survey.  (author introduction)

  • Individual Author: Gubits, Daniel; Shinn, Marybeth; Bell, Stephen; Wood, Michelle; Dastrup, Samuel; Solari, Claudia D.; Brown, Scott R.; Brown, Steven; Dunton, Lauren; Lin, Winston; McInnis, Debi; Rodriguez, Jason; Savidge, Galen; Spellman, Brooke E.
    Reference Type: Report
    Year: 2015

    This report, titled Short-Term Impacts of Housing and Services Interventions for Homeless Families, presents the short-term outcomes of the families enrolled in the Family Options Study, a multi-site random assignment experiment designed to study the impact of various housing and services interventions on homeless families. The report documents how families are faring approximately 20 months after random assignment to one of four interventions: community-based rapid re-housing (CBRR), project-based transitional housing (PBTH), permanent housing subsidy (SUB), and usual care (UC). Outcome measures fall within five domains: housing stability; family preservation; adult well-being; child well-being; and self-sufficiency. The collection of extensive cost data for each of the interventions tested enables the calculation of the costs that can be tied to each of the interventions, and in turn, used to understand the cost of achieving the outcomes observed. The study resulted in strong and significant findings, particularly related to the power of offering a voucher to a homeless family...

    This report, titled Short-Term Impacts of Housing and Services Interventions for Homeless Families, presents the short-term outcomes of the families enrolled in the Family Options Study, a multi-site random assignment experiment designed to study the impact of various housing and services interventions on homeless families. The report documents how families are faring approximately 20 months after random assignment to one of four interventions: community-based rapid re-housing (CBRR), project-based transitional housing (PBTH), permanent housing subsidy (SUB), and usual care (UC). Outcome measures fall within five domains: housing stability; family preservation; adult well-being; child well-being; and self-sufficiency. The collection of extensive cost data for each of the interventions tested enables the calculation of the costs that can be tied to each of the interventions, and in turn, used to understand the cost of achieving the outcomes observed. The study resulted in strong and significant findings, particularly related to the power of offering a voucher to a homeless family. HUD anticipates releasing the "long-term" outcomes of families within the next two years, and these findings will document how families are faring a full three years after random assignment, and how the costs of the different groups of families continue to evolve. (author abstract)

  • Individual Author: Harrington, Mary; Perez-Johnson, Irma; Meckstroth, Alicia; Bellotti,Jeanne; Love, John M.
    Reference Type: Report
    Year: 2000

    In 1994, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (hereafter, the Foundation) launched a five-year, $5.4 million pilot program involving six Head Start grantees, to design and develop model substance abuse prevention projects that will strengthen both the families and neighborhoods of economically disadvantaged preschool children. Following a two-year planning and development (Phase I), five of the six original projects went on to complete the three-year implementation (Phase II). The initiative, named Free to Grow, targets families and neighborhoods of Head Start children to create changes that will free young children to grow and flourish while at the same time protecting them from substance abuse and the problems associated with it. The five Phase II Free to Grow pilot projects were scattered across the United States, with sites in (1) Compton, California; (2) Colorado Springs, Colorado; (3) Owensboro, Hancock County, and Christian County, Kentucky; (4) the Washington Heights section of New York City, New York; and (5) the San Isidro ward of Canóvanas, Puerto Rico. (author abstract...

    In 1994, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (hereafter, the Foundation) launched a five-year, $5.4 million pilot program involving six Head Start grantees, to design and develop model substance abuse prevention projects that will strengthen both the families and neighborhoods of economically disadvantaged preschool children. Following a two-year planning and development (Phase I), five of the six original projects went on to complete the three-year implementation (Phase II). The initiative, named Free to Grow, targets families and neighborhoods of Head Start children to create changes that will free young children to grow and flourish while at the same time protecting them from substance abuse and the problems associated with it. The five Phase II Free to Grow pilot projects were scattered across the United States, with sites in (1) Compton, California; (2) Colorado Springs, Colorado; (3) Owensboro, Hancock County, and Christian County, Kentucky; (4) the Washington Heights section of New York City, New York; and (5) the San Isidro ward of Canóvanas, Puerto Rico. (author abstract)

  • Individual Author: Wood, Michelle; Bell, Stephen; Dunton, Lauren
    Reference Type: Conference Paper
    Year: 2017

    This PowerPoint presentation from the 2017 NAWRS workshop summarizes the design and implementation of the Family Options Study, which examines the effects of alternative housing and services interventions for homeless families.

    This PowerPoint presentation from the 2017 NAWRS workshop summarizes the design and implementation of the Family Options Study, which examines the effects of alternative housing and services interventions for homeless families.

  • Individual Author: Gubits, Daniel; Shinn, Marybeth; Wood, Michelle; Bell, Stephen; Dastrup, Samuel; Solari, Claudia D.; Brown, Scott R.; McInnis, Debi; McCall, Tom; Kattel, Utsav
    Reference Type: Report
    Year: 2016

    The Family Options Study: Three-year Impacts of Housing and Services Interventions for Homeless Families documents the outcomes of the 2,282 formerly homeless study families approximately 37 months after having been randomly assigned to one of four housing and/or services interventions. The findings at 37-months in large part mirror the findings documented at 20 months, with the long-terms outcomes again demonstrating the power of a voucher to convey significantly improved housing outcomes to formerly homeless families, when compared with the housing outcomes of families offered other interventions. Families offered a permanent subsidy experienced less than half as many episodes of subsequent homelessness, and vast improvements across a broad set of measures related to residential stability. Many of the non-housing outcomes of interest that were strongly influenced by the offer of a voucher in the short-term, such as reductions in psychological distress and intimate partner violence, are still detected, but some positive impacts found at the 20-month followup are not detected at...

    The Family Options Study: Three-year Impacts of Housing and Services Interventions for Homeless Families documents the outcomes of the 2,282 formerly homeless study families approximately 37 months after having been randomly assigned to one of four housing and/or services interventions. The findings at 37-months in large part mirror the findings documented at 20 months, with the long-terms outcomes again demonstrating the power of a voucher to convey significantly improved housing outcomes to formerly homeless families, when compared with the housing outcomes of families offered other interventions. Families offered a permanent subsidy experienced less than half as many episodes of subsequent homelessness, and vast improvements across a broad set of measures related to residential stability. Many of the non-housing outcomes of interest that were strongly influenced by the offer of a voucher in the short-term, such as reductions in psychological distress and intimate partner violence, are still detected, but some positive impacts found at the 20-month followup are not detected at the longer, 37-month followup. For example, 20 months after random assignment, assignment to SUB reduced the proportion of families with child separations in the 6 months before the survey--this effect was not detected in the 6 months before the 37-month survey. Also in this longer window of observation, some positive impacts in the child well-being domain have emerged. Families offered a voucher continue to be significantly more food secure and experience significantly less economic stress than families offered the other interventions. On measures of employment and earnings, the modest negative impacts of vouchers relative to usual care have fallen, although some remain statistically significant. (Author abstract)

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