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Ken Sanders
The Center on Fathering
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The Bawmann Group
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January 23, 2008

Colorado Springs Fatherhood Program Selected to Participate in Prestigious National Research Grant

Colorado Springs, Colo. – January 23, 2008 – The Center on Fathering was recently selected by the National Quality Improvement Center for Non-Residential Fathers (QIC NRF) to participate in a five year grant totaling $1,975,000. The Center is one of only four programs nationwide selected to participate in this research grant, which will study the impact of non-resident father involvement on outcomes for children within the child welfare system.

According to national research, more than 25 million American children do not live with their biological father and children whose biological fathers are absent, are on average, two to three times more likely to be poor, to use drugs, to be victims of child abuse and to engage in criminal behavior than their peers who live with married, biological or adoptive parents. The QIC NRF research will provide evidence on how the involvement of non-resident fathers participating in the public child welfare system impacts child saftey, permanence and well-being. Relationships between children, non-resident fathers and/or paternal relatives will be examined during the five year grant period. Information gained from the QIC NRF will then be distributed to the United States Children’s Bureau, sub-grantees, child welfare agencies, private service providers, the courts and legal systems.

“We are truly honored to have been selected to participate in a research grant that has the potential to make a profound impact on the way non-residential fathers are viewed in the child welfare system,” said Ken Sanders, director of the Center on Fathering. “Whether it’s within the child welfare system or outside of it, the non-residential fathers we work with on a daily basis want to shape the direction of their children’s lives.”

In the fall of 2006, the American Humane Association, the American Bar Association Center on Children and the Law and the National Fatherhood Initiative received federal funding to sponsor research and develop the QIC NRF. The project was developed as a result of national research indicating that there was little meaningful engagement between fathers and the child welfare system. Programs in Seattle, Fort Worth and Indianapolis were also selected to participate in the five year grant in addition to the Center on Fathering.

The Center on Fathering, founded nearly 13 years ago, is a program of the El Paso County Department of Human Services. The program provides comprehensive services to fathers and fathers-to-be of all ages to assist them with the understanding and skills required to fulfill their fathering roles and responsibilities. The Center on Fathering is also one of 42 funded programs of the Colorado Promoting Responsible Fatherhood Initiative. The Initiative distributes more than $1.1 million in community awards to state, community and faith based organizations to assist in providing direct services to fathers and families.

More information about this grant can be found at http://www.abanet.org/child/fathers/. For more information on The Center on Fathering, please call 1.800.MY.DAD-34 or 719.634.7797 or visit www.coloradodads.com.