SafeCare® Program


The SafeCare® Program for Child Neglect: Examining Differential Outcomes and Change Mechanisms

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SafeCare® is a brief, evidence-based behavioural parenting program that focuses on building parenting skills to address emotional, environmental, supervisory, and medical neglect, as well as decreasing physical abuse in families with children (aged newborn to 5 years). Over the course of this study, we will be working with three Ontario child welfare agencies (based in Hamilton, Niagara, Kenora) that currently have SafeCare® providers already delivering the program. The overall purpose of the project is to implement the program within Ontario child welfare systems, and to evaluate its outcomes as well as mechanisms of change.

Our purpose will be to determine:

  • How SafeCare® works to improve child and caregiver outcomes;
  • What works, and for whom;
  • Which families experience improvements in both caregiver and child outcomes;
  • The experiences of those families who improved; and
  • Rates of recidivism

Through the use of multi-method data collection tools we hope to answer the following questions:

  1. What are the various trajectories of change on child (e.g., socio- emotional functioning) and caregiver (e.g., abuse potential) outcomes post-SafeCare®?
  2. What family-related factors predict these change trajectories?
  3. What is the role of caregiver emotion regulation, parenting stress, and caregiver executive functioning on child and caregiver outcomes post- SafeCare®?
  4. Do SafeCare® completers have decreased child welfare contact?

View the SafeCare® Brochure

Funded by the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (Principal Investigators: Elisa Romano and Andrea Gonzalez)