Breaking the Cycle of Poverty in Young Families Two-Generation Strategies for Working with Disconnected Young Parents & Their Children

The National Human Service Assembly has completed a report documenting effective approaches to serving the 1.4 million parents, age 16 to 24, who are both out of school and out of work, referred to as OSOW in the report. Funded by the Annie E. Casey Foundation, the report documents the practices of 32 “two generation” programs which attempt to reduce poverty by investing in both adults and children. The report highlights the challenges faced by this group, which include high rates of maternal depression, exposure to violence, homelessness, child welfare system involvement and immigration status issues. It also makes the financial case for programs such as these: according to a 2012 report, the total taxpayer burden for all OSOW youth ages 16–24 years is $1.56 trillion.

To read the full report, click HERE.

According to the report, effective two generation programs share a number of attributes. First, they are grounded in positive youth development. They also promote health child development through a series of approaches referred to as “baby boosts.” A focus on family development and social connections also characterize successful programs.

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