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October 2023Vol. 24, No. 8A Change Framework for Engaging Fathers and Paternal Relatives and Promoting Racial Justice

A recent brief from the Fathers and Continuous Learning in Child Welfare (FCL) project explains how participants in a Breakthrough Series Collaborative (BSC) used a guiding framework to strengthen the engagement of fathers and paternal relatives with children involved in the child welfare system.

A BSC is a continuous learning methodology used to test and spread the implementation of promising practices to help organizations improve in specific areas. In the brief, Using a Change Framework to Design Systems That Effectively Engage Fathers and Paternal Relatives and Promote Racial Justice, the authors begin by describing the key components of BSCs, such as the Collaborative Change Framework. For the FCL project, this framework included multiple domains that together represented a child welfare agency with successful and sustained father and paternal relative engagement.

The brief also details the connection the BSC improvement teams came to realize existed between their efforts to engage fathers and paternal relatives in the child welfare system and their work to promote racial justice for men of color in the child welfare system. This connection led to the creation of a racial justice workgroup, which helped the BSC incorporate antiracist practices into child welfare and increase father engagement. The brief links to video examples from BSC improvement teams that include discussions about the engagement strategies that were tested within each domain of the framework.  

The FCL project was conducted by Mathematica and the University of Denver with funding from the Office of Planning, Research, and Evaluation in partnership with the Children’s Bureau. To learn more about the BSC, access the brief and other FCL resources on the Mathematica website.