The Impact of SafeCare® Dads to Kids Program on Father Maltreatment Risk and Involvement: Outcomes and Lessons Learned from an Efficacy Trial.

Sep 2018 | Shannon Self-Brown, Melissa C. Osborne, Clinton Boyd Jr., Natasha DeVeausse Brown, Whitney Rostad, Alexandria Patterson, Evander Baker, Akilah Thomas, Elizabeth M. McAdam, Matt Jackson, Theresa Glasheen, and Betty Lai.

Abstract: Child Maltreatment (CM) is a public health problem, and experts recommend parent training programs as a prevention method. Few programs target fathers, even though male caregivers are involved as perpetrators in approximately 45% of substantiated CM cases. This study examines the efficacy of an adapted version of SafeCare (Dad2K) with marginalized fathers. Participants include a convenience sample of fathers with children ages 2-5 years. Fathers (n=99) were randomized to an 1) intervention group (SafeCare Dad2K) or to a 2) comparison group (receiving parenting information in the mail). Quantitative data were collected at baseline, post-intervention (7-weeks post-baseline), and 3 months post-intervention. Qualitative data (semi-structured interviews) were collected from 11 intervention father completers following the second quantitative data collection timepoint. Multi-level modeling results indicated no statistically significant time-by-treatment findings for father involvement (b=0.03, 95% confidence interval [CI]: -0.03, 0.08, p=0.38), total corporal punishment (b=0.03, 95% CI: -0.47, 0.41, p=0.89) or neglect (b=0.13, 95% CI: -1.93, 1.68, p=0.89). Qualitative findings indicated that Dad2K completers exhibited positive knowledge and behavioral change related to parenting. Study limitations, lessons learned from this formative work, and recommendations for future research are discussed. 

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