Focus: Families and Youth

The Promising Practices Network
This web site highlights programs and practices that credible research indicates are effective in improving outcomes for children, youth, and families. The RAND Corporation, the nation’s original “think tank”, operates this project.

Child Trends
Child Trends is a nonprofit, nonpartisan research organization dedicated to improving the lives of children by conducting and disseminating research to improve the decisions, programs, and policies that affect children and their families. In advancing its mission, Child Trends collects and analyzes data; conducts, synthesizes, and disseminates research; designs and evaluates programs; and develops and tests promising approaches to research in the field.

California Evidence-Based Clearinghouse for Child Welfare (CEBC)
The website is designed to: (1) Serve as an online connection for child welfare professionals, staff of public and private organizations, academic institutions, and others who are committed to serving children and families;  (2) Provide up-to-date information on evidence-based child welfare practices;  (3) Facilitate the utilization of evidence-based practices as a method of achieving improved outcomes of safety, permanency and well-being for children and families involved in the California public child welfare system.

Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP) 
This Model Program Guide (MPG) is designed to assist practitioners and communities in implementing evidence-based prevention and intervention programs that can make a difference in the lives of children. The MPG database of evidence-based programs covers the entire continuum of youth services from prevention through sanctions to reentry. The MPG can be used to assist juvenile justice practitioners, administrators, and researchers to enhance accountability, ensure public safety, and reduce recidivism. The MPG is an easy-to-use tool that offers the first and only database of scientifically proven programs across the spectrum of youth services.

Blueprints for Violence Prevention
A national violence prevention initiative at the University of Colorado at Boulder to identify programs effective in reducing adolescent violent crime, aggression, delinquency, and substance abuse.

Strengthening America’s Families
The Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP) in collaboration with the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Service's Center for Substance Abuse Prevention (CSAP) provide the results of the 1999 search for "best practice" family strengthening programs. Provides two page summaries of family-focused programs, which have been proven to be effective. Additional information as well as direct links to individual program websites can be found on the site.

Wisconsin Clearinghouse for Prevention Resources: Rating Criteria for Evidence-Based Programs.
This model program summary matrix is an expansion of the SAMHSA/CSAP and Western CAPT model program summaries identified on their web sites with additional details on the costs of training and implementation of a variety of community based model programs.

Helping America’s Youth
A nationwide effort, initiated by President George W. Bush and led by First Lady Laura Bush, to benefit children and teenagers by encouraging action in three key areas: family, school, and community. The Community Guide to Helping America’s Youth helps communities build partnerships, assess their needs and resources, and select from program designs that could be replicated in their community. It walks community groups through the steps necessary for building strong supports for youth.  The Helping America’s Youth (HAY) Program Tool includes 180 evidence-based programs that prevent and reduce delinquency or other youthful (up to age 20) problem behaviors (e.g., drug and alcohol use).  

The Harvard Family Research Project (HFRP) Out-of-School Time (OST) Program Research and Evaluation Database
A compilation of profiles written by HFRP of research studies and evaluations of OST programs and initiatives. It provides accessible information about research and evaluation work on both large and small OST programs to support the development of high quality evaluations and programs in the out-of-school time field.

Evidence Based Program Database
The Evidence-Based Program Database is developed by Ohio State University Center for Learning Excellence a compilation of quality government, academic, and non-profit lists of evidence-based programs that appear on the World Wide Web and/or in print form. This web-based system was created to assist in efforts to select and implement evidence-based programs that positively affect youth behaviors.

Pathways Mapping Initiative (PMI)
PMI was established in January 2000 as part of the Project on Effective Interventions at Harvard University and developed in partnership with the Technical Assistance Resource Center of The Annie E. Casey Foundation.  Its objective is to build on the wealth of findings about what works by going beyond both anecdotes and traditional evaluation literature. This website holds a wealth of findings about what it takes to improve the lives of children and families living in America's tough neighborhoods. Community coalitions, providers of services and supports, funders, and policymakers will find a broad collection of information about what works in social programs and policies to achieve desired results, including increased rates of children ready for school and higher numbers of economically successful families.

Social Programs That Work

The Council for Excellence in Government’s Coalition for Evidence-Based Policy web site summarizes the results of well-designed randomized controlled trials in social policy that have particularly important policy implications -- because they show, for example, that an intervention has a major effect, or that a widely-used intervention has little or no effect. 

Other Databases: Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services

SAMHSA Model Programs
National Registry of Evidence-Based Programs and Practices (NREPP) is a service of the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA). NREPP is a searchable database of interventions for the prevention and treatment of mental and substance use disorders. SAMHSA has developed this resource to help people, agencies, and organizations implement programs and practices in their communities.

Center for the Application of Substance Abuse Technologies
The Center provides training, technical assistance, evaluation, research, and other services to support prevention, treatment, and recovery in the alcohol and other drugs field.  As part of this mission they created a best-practices database.


The National Alliance of Chidren's Trust and Prevention Funds
The Alliance supports and strengthens state Children’s Trust and Prevention Funds, promotes awareness of the importance of strengthening families to prevent child abuse and neglect, advocates for increased public and private funding for community-based child abuse and neglect prevention activities, and collaborates to help ensure the safety and well-being of children throughout the country.