Healthy Families

Healthy families can be important when assisting low- income families and welfare recipients, and this section provides information on how to use marriage, responsible fatherhood, and child welfare to support TANF families.

Healthy Families: Fatherhood

FATHER Project, a program of Goodwill/Easter Seals Minnesota
Minneapolis, Minnesota (Hennepin)

Type of Agency/Organization Coordinating/Operating the Program:
Community-based Organization

Funding Sources:
Federal Grant, Private Foundation Grants, Individual Donors

Clientele/Population Served:
Low-income, non-custodial parents

Mission/Goal of the Program:
The mission of the FATHER Project is to empower fathers so that they can provide for the emotional and economic support of their children. Embedded in this mission is the value that all men who choose to father a child, whether within or outside of marriage, assume equal responsibility with the mother for supporting and nurturing their child. This program is a collaboration of community and government organizations that encourage low-income, primarily unmarried, non-custodial fathers to participate fully in the healthy development of their children.

Programs/Services Offered:
Case management, parenting groups, child support services, legal services (access and visitation), employment and training, early childhood development, leadership development, and GED preparation.

Results and/or Performance Measures:
Evaluation results are based on key program goals in the areas of: 1) improving economic stability and 2) increasing parenting skills and commitment to responsible fatherhood. Performance measures include: job placement and retention, child support payments, paternity establishments, pre/post measures of parenting attitudes and behaviors, frequency and quality of contact with children, measures of children's increased literacy skills, GED subtest completion and graduation, and improved life skills. Measures of parenting components are self-reported. The FATHER Project provides an annual summary of services provided including a compilation of outcome information. In 2010, Wilder Research conducted an economic "Return on Investment" (ROI) study of the FATHER Project which is now publicly available. Other results, including participant profiles and video clips of participants speaking about program impact on their life also are now available in our "interactive" Logic Model. Evaluation results are available for viewing via the FATHER Project Replication manual, which is publicly available as a web-based resource.

For more information:
Andrew Freeberg
Program Director
Goodwill/Easter Seals Minnesota
553 Fairview Ave N
St. Paul, MN 55104

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