Low-income families face significant challenges navigating both low-wage employment or education and training programs and also finding good-quality child care. Programs that intentionally combine services for parents and children can help families move toward economic security and create conditions that promote child and family well-being. Although these programs in general are not new (see Background), policymakers and program leaders are now experimenting with innovative approaches to combining services. Yet, most currently operating programs, sometimes called “two-generation” or “dual generation” programs, have not yet been rigorously evaluated (Chase-Lansdale and Brooks-Gunn 2014).
The Office of Planning, Research & Evaluation conducted a targeted review of publicly available documents and literature. This scan aimed to identify common features of programs operating as of early 2016 that offer integrated services to support both family economic security and child development and well-being (see About This Project). This brief presents the results of the scan related to six key questions:
1. How did programs develop?
2. How mature are these programs?
3. Whom do these programs serve?
4. What services do programs provide to adults and children?
5. How do programs engage both parents and children?
6. How do programs fund their services for parents and children?