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The YVPC Fathers and Sons Program Cassandra L. Brooks, MSA Cleopatra Howard Caldwell, PhD and The Fathers and Sons Steering Committee Youth Violence Prevention.

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Presentation on theme: "The YVPC Fathers and Sons Program Cassandra L. Brooks, MSA Cleopatra Howard Caldwell, PhD and The Fathers and Sons Steering Committee Youth Violence Prevention."— Presentation transcript:

1 The YVPC Fathers and Sons Program Cassandra L. Brooks, MSA Cleopatra Howard Caldwell, PhD and The Fathers and Sons Steering Committee Youth Violence Prevention Center Flint, MI & the University of Michigan 2012 Genesee County Health Department Public Health Conference April 3, 2012

2 WHY ARE FATHERS SO IMPORTANT? Father Involvement and Benefits to Children Parenting and Mens Health Father Involvement and Benefits to Children Parenting and Mens Health

3 The Flint Fathers and Sons Project

4 The Flint Fathers and Sons Project Community Partners Flint Odyssey House-Health Awareness Center Flint/Genesee County Neighborhood Roundtable Faith Access to Community Economic Development (FACED) Flint Community Schools Genesee County Community Action Resource Department Genesee County Health Department Individual Community Representatives University of Michigan-Flint

5 CBPR Methodological Approach Motivating Change: Encouraging Interdisciplinary Approaches to Bridging Academic Inquiry & Public Reality

6 The Flint Fathers and Sons Project CBPR approach Equal partnership Local health department, CBOs, University Project Purpose To develop a culturally relevant youth preventive intervention to enhance relationships between non-resident African American fathers and their 8 to 12 year old sons in an effort to: prevent or reduce substance use, violent behavior and early sexual initiation among sons and encourage health promoting behaviors (i.e., help-seeking and physical activity) in both.

7 Lessons Learned Nonresident African American fathers can be effectively involved in their sons lives. Positive father involvement with sons is associated with positive outcomes for sons and fathers. Nonresident African American fathers can improve their parenting skills through interventions that address their needs. Addressing cultural context is critical for creating a safe environment for African American fathers and sons to participate in intervention programs.

8 I feel so great because Im hanging out with my dad, thank you Lord. African American son and participant in the Fathers and Sons Project

9 The YVPC Fathers and Sons Program African American father-son families 10 – 14 year old boys Resident and nonresident fathers Biological and father figures Mother/guardian consent YVPC geographic area requirement for sons

10 Program Implementation Conduct two groups annually 10 father-son families per group Total of 100 families Program held at CBO, Trained Facilitators Fathers and sons are paid to complete evaluation questionnaires

11 Intervention Description 10 sessions over 6 weeks Meet 2 times per week 27 hours Intervention Sessions Homework Community events Evaluation interviews One 4-month booster ses sion

12 Intervention Content Areas Diversity among families Personal relationships & responsibilities parental monitoring, role modeling, race socialization Parent-child communication general & risky behaviors Social support – within & outside family Develop parenting & refusal skills [Caldwell, C.H., Zimmerman, M.A., & Isichei, A.C. (2001). Forging collaborative partnerships to enhance family health: An assessment of strengths and challenges in conducting community- based research. Journal of Public Health Management and Practice, 7, 1-9.]

13 Be Proud of You! Think about your Strengths Recognize your contributions to society! Learn about your culture

14 Concluding Remarks Recruitment Families Facilitators Interviewers Implementation Schedule Expected Program Benefits Contact Information

15 Summary of Findings for Fathers Intervention improved fathers: Parental monitoring Race-related socialization behaviors Communication about sex with sons Parenting skills satisfaction Intentions to communicate in the future with sons Fathers request for professional help with problematic drinking behaviors [ Caldwell, C.H., Rafferty, J., Reischl, T., De Loney, E.H., & Brooks, C.L. (2010). Enhancing parenting skills among non-resident African American fathers as a strategy for preventing youth risky behaviors. American Journal of Community Psychology, 45, ]

16 Summary of Findings for Sons Intervention effects were found for: Perceptions of more monitoring by father More communication about sex with fathers Intentions to avoid violence in the future Changing fathers parenting behaviors reduces aggressive behaviors in sons Reducing aggressive behaviors in sons is associated with their intentions to avoid violent behaviors in the future [ Caldwell, C.H., Rafferty, J., Reischl, T., De Loney, E.H., & Brooks, C.L. (2010). Enhancing parenting skills among non-resident African American fathers as a strategy for preventing youth risky behaviors. American Journal of Community Psychology, 45, ; Caldwell et al., 2012]

17 Take Home Messages Non-resident fathers should not be overlooked as a source of support and protection for African American boys. With non-resident families, every moment is a teachable moment for fathers to share their values and expectations with their sons, and vise versa. Consider the environment of non-resident families when examining outcomes

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