Strengthening Families, Healthy Marriage & Responsible Fatherhood View all reports on this topic

Topic Overview

This portfolio includes research and evaluation on topics such as family formation and stability, co-parenting, marriage and father involvement. Studies include a strong focus on the implications of programs, including the effects of welfare policies, for both child and adult well-being.

Projects on this Topic

  • Accomplishments of the Domestic Violence Hotline, Online Connections, and Text (ADVHOCaT), 2014-2019

    The National Domestic Violence Hotline (The Hotline) and loveisrespect (LIR; the help line targeted towards young people) are supported by the Division of Family Violence Prevention and Services within ACF’s Family and Youth Services Bureau. They are critical partners in the intervention, prevention, and resource assistance efforts of the network of family violence, domestic violence, and dating violence service providers. They provide:...

  • An Exploratory Study: Implications of Immigration Enforcement Activities for the Well-Being of Children in Immigrant Families, 2012-2014

    The Office of Planning, Research and Evaluation (OPRE), in collaboration with the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation (ASPE) within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), has initiated this project to explore...

  • Behavioral Interventions Scholars, 2017 - 2019

    The Behavioral Interventions Scholars (BIS) grant program supports dissertation research by advanced graduate students who are applying a behavioral science lens to specific research questions relevant to social services programs and policies and other issues facing low-income and vulnerable families in the United States. As part of OPRE’s Behavioral Interventions to Advance Self-Sufficiency research portfolio...

  • Behavioral Interventions to Advance Self-Sufficiency (BIAS) Next Generation, 2015 - 2022

    The Behavioral Interventions to Advance Self-Sufficiency (BIAS) project demonstrated that applying insights from behavioral science to challenges facing human services programs can improve program operations and outcomes at relatively low cost. The Behavioral Interventions to Advance Self-Sufficiency-Next Generation (BIAS-NG) project continues ACF’s exploration...

  • Behavioral Interventions to Advance Self-Sufficiency (BIAS) Research Portfolio

    Many human services programs are designed such that individuals must make a series of decisions and take a number of active steps in order to realize a benefit. From deciding which programs to apply for, to completing forms, attending meetings, showing proof of eligibility, and arranging travel and child care, program designers often assume that individuals make decisions about how to proceed based on careful consideration of their options and what is best for them...

  • Building Bridges and Bonds (B3) Evaluation, 2014-2021

    There is great interest in identifying effective strategies that build fathers’ capacity to support their children, both emotionally and financially. Since 2006, Congress has provided funds for discretionary grants to programs aimed at supporting fathers in three core areas....

  • Center For Research on Hispanic Children & Families, 2013-2018

    The National Research Center on Hispanic Children and Families generates new research and translates research across three priority areas—poverty reduction and self-sufficiency, healthy marriage and responsible fatherhood, and early care and education—to build knowledge and inform ACF programs and policies to better serve Hispanic children and families. The Center has three primary goals: 1) advance a cutting-edge research agenda; 2) build research capacity; and 3) translate emerging research. Lina Guzman at Child Trends and Michael Lopez at Abt Associates lead the Center, in collaboration with university partners (University of Maryland-College Park; University of North Carolina at Greensboro; and New York University's Institute for Human Development and Social Change). In 2014, the Center launched a Fellowship program supporting emerging scholars studying issues relevant to low-income and vulnerable Hispanic children and families.

  • Child Care and Early Education Policy and Research Analysis Project, 2005-2018

    The Child Care and Early Education Policy and Research Analysis Project is a contract awarded by the Office of Planning, Research and Evaluation to Child Trends...

  • Coparenting and Healthy Relationship and Marriage Education for Dads (CHaRMED) 2018 - 2021

    Project Overview

    Coparenting and Healthy Relationship and Marriage Education for Dads (CHaRMED) is a federal evaluation effort designed to...

  • Data Sharing Solutions for Human Services, 2017 - 2022

    ACF supports the development and operation of fully integrated systems to support person-centric service delivery.  Integration implies alignment of legal, policy, program, and technology factors that impact our ability to share information.  If we are successful as a community, interoperability will drive progress in...

  • Early Care and Education Data Archive, 2018 - 2023

    Project Overview

    The Office of Planning, Research, and Evaluation (OPRE) within the Administration of Children and Families (ACF) funds numerous data collection efforts through research studies on a wide-range...

  • Engaging Fathers and Paternal Relatives: A Continuous Quality Improvement Approach in the Child Welfare System, 2017 - 2020

    Evidence suggests that fathers play an important role in children's development and that they can serve as a key source of emotional and financial support. In many social services, however, fathers are...

  • Ex-Prisoner Reentry Strategies Study, 2011-2017

    The Ex-Prisoner Reentry Strategies Study documented the implementation of six Responsible Fatherhood programs initially funded in 2011 under the Responsible Fatherhood grant program...

  • Family Strengthening Research – Annual Report

    OPRE’s family strengthening work includes research and evaluation projects related to strengthening relationships within families, supporting fatherhood, nurturing children through their families, reducing teen pregnancy and supporting youth in...

  • Family Strengthening Scholars, 2014-2017

    The Family Strengthening Scholars grant program is designed to build research capacity in the healthy marriage/responsible fatherhood field (HM/RF). These grants are to support dissertation research on HM/RF policy issues and are meant to build capacity in the research field to focus research on questions that have direct implications for HM/RF decision-making and program administration...

  • Fatherhood and Marriage Local Evaluation (FaMLE) and Cross-Site Project, 2013-2020

    The purpose of the Fatherhood and Marriage Local Evaluation and Cross-Site Project is to support ACF’s third cohort (2015-2020) of Healthy Marriage and Responsible Fatherhood (HMRF) grantees through:

    • fostering high quality data collection;
    • strengthening grantee-led local evaluations; and
    • conducting cross-site performance measures analysis.

  • Fatherhood, Relationships, and Marriage – Illuminating the Next Generation of Research (FRAMING Research), 2018 – 2023

    Project Overview

    The purpose of this project is to support activities relevant to a learning agenda for ACF’s Healthy Marriage and Responsible Fatherhood (HMRF) programming led by the Office of Family Assistance (OFA) and supported by the Office of Planning, Research, and Evaluation...

  • Fatherhood: Ongoing Research and Program Evaluation Efforts

    The Administration for Children and Families (ACF) in the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services promotes the economic and social well-being of families, children, individuals, and communities. Many ACF programs interact with and serve fathers...

  • Hispanic Research Work Group, 2011-2014

    ACF’s Hispanic Research Work Group brings together experts in a wide range of content areas relevant to ACF’s mission to assist ACF/OPRE in identifying research priorities concerning low-income, Hispanic families.

  • Human-centered Design for Human Services (HCD4HS), 2018 - 2021

    In this project, the Administration for Children and Families (ACF) is exploring the application of human-centered design (HCD) across its service delivery programs at the federal, state, and local levels. To date, little is known regarding what HCD looks like in the context of human services, the requirements for implementation across a range of programs; the measurable outcomes and effectiveness of HCD approaches; the evaluability of HCD approaches; or the sustainability of HCD approaches.

  • Methods Inquiries, 2013-2021

    OPRE plays a central role in advancing understanding and disseminating knowledge about research and evaluation methods and tools that are, or could be, used to enhance knowledge about program and policy effectiveness. The purpose of the Methods Inquiries project is to organize...

  • National Domestic Violence Hotline (NDVH) Services Assessment Framework based on Theory (SAF-T), 2016 - 2019

    The National Domestic Violence Hotline (“The Hotline”) and loveisrespect (LIR; the helpline targeted towards young people) are supported by the Family Violence Prevention and Services Act (FVPSA) program within the Family and Youth Services Bureau. The Hotline and LIR...

  • Network of Infant Toddler Researchers (NITR)

    The Network of infant/toddler Researchers (NitR) consortium brings together leading applied researchers with policymakers and technical assistance providers responsible for overseeing and supporting early childhood programs...

  • Parents and Children Together (PACT) Evaluation, 2011-2020

    To learn about the implementation and effects of Healthy Marriage and Responsible Fatherhood (HMRF) programs, ACF awarded a contract in 2011 to Mathematica Policy Research to conduct the Parents and Children Together (PACT) evaluation. The evaluation...

  • Personal Responsibility Education Program (PREP) Multi-Component Evaluation, 2011-2018

    The Personal Responsibility Education Program (PREP) is one of multiple efforts at the Federal level to reduce teen pregnancy through the use of evidence-based programs. The goals of the PREP Evaluation are to document how programs funded...

  • Personal Responsibility Education Program: Promising Youth Programs (PREP PYP), 2016-2022

    During the second generation of Personal Responsibility Education Program (PREP) programming (roughly 2016-2020), the Promising Youth Programs (PYP) project is supporting grantee-led evaluations and developing curricula for underserved youth populations...

  • Preventing and Addressing Intimate Violence when Engaging Dads (PAIVED), 2017 - 2019

    Intimate partner violence (IPV) is a widespread problem in the United States and among the vulnerable populations served by Administration for Children and Families programs. However, little is known about IPV experienced and perpetrated by fathers served...

  • Responding to Intimate Violence in Relationship Programs (RIViR), 2014-2020

    Intimate partner violence (IPV) is a significant problem for women and men in the United States, with 23% of women and 14% of men experiencing severe physical violence by an intimate partner in his or her lifetime (Smith et al., 2017). Given the goal of healthy marriage and relationship education (HMRE) programs...

  • Secondary Data Analyses of Strengthening Families Datasets, 2014-2015

    OPRE awarded eight cooperative agreements to fund research to conduct secondary data analysis of archived ACF data, specifically the Building Strong Families (BSF), Supporting Healthy Marriage (SHM), and Community Healthy Marriage Initiative (CHMI)...

  • Self-Regulation and Toxic Stress Series

    In 2013, OPRE commissioned four interrelated reports focused on self-regulation and toxic stress from a team at the Center for Child and Social Policy at Duke University. Since then, that team and other experts have created multiple practice-oriented resources grounded in the initial reports. Together, these reports and resources comprise the ‘Self-Regulation and Toxic Stress Series.’ The goal of this series is to communicate the potential of a self-regulation...

  • Self-Regulation Training Approaches and Resources to Improve Staff Capacity for Implementing Healthy Marriage Programs for Youth (SARHM), 2017 - 2019

    Research highlights self-regulation as a critical set of life skills linked to individual success across the lifespan, including the ability to set goals, delay gratification, exert willpower, manage emotions, and solve problems. Strong evidence reveals that parents, educators, and other adult caregivers...

  • Self-Sufficiency Research Clearinghouse, 2009-2021

    The Office of Planning, Research and Evaluation awarded a grant to ICF International to fund the launch and maintenance of the Self-Sufficiency Research Clearinghouse (SSRC) as a strategic part of OPRE's goal – to build and disseminate knowledge about effective approaches to helping low-income children and families. The SSRC is a virtual portal of research on low-income families and vulnerable populations. It influences policy and practice in such areas as employment, education and training, and family self-sufficiency by improving access to field-tested, evidence-informed, and evidence-based program and policy strategies and by fostering professional connectivity among its targeted audiences.

  • Strengthening Relationship Education and Marriage Services (STREAMS), 2015-2022

    Research indicates that children and their parents fare better on a range of outcomes when living in stable, low-conflict, two-parent families. The Office of Family Assistance (OFA) at the Administration for Children and Families (ACF) provides grants to fund healthy marriage and...

  • The Fatherhood Research and Practice Network, 2013-2018

    The Fatherhood Research and Practice Network (FRPN) is a cooperative agreement awarded to Temple University with a subcontract to the Center for Policy Research in Denver, CO. The FRPN will pursue three goals:

    1. Promote rigorous evaluation of fatherhood programs.
    2. Expand the number of researchers and practitioners collaborating to evaluate fatherhood programs by providing training and technical assistance to develop their capacity to conduct and participate in high-quality research studies and evaluations.
    3. Disseminate information that leads to effective fatherhood practice and research.

  • Youth Empowerment Information, Data Collection, and Exploration on Avoidance of Sex, 2017

    The goal of this project is to collect data that will inform educational topics and strategies for an optimal-health sexual risk avoidance (SRA) approach to reducing teen pregnancy and improving youth well-being.  The project...