Parents with a social network of emotionally supportive friends, family, and neighbors often find that it is easier to care for their children and themselves than those who do not have such a network. Most parents need people they can call on once in a while when they need a sympathetic listener, advice, or concrete support. Research has shown that parents who are isolated and have few social connections are at higher risk for maltreating their children.
Annie E. Casey Foundation
Focuses on the premise that families do better when they live in communities that help them to succeed. This website provides information on theory, relevant websites, results, and reading materials.
Parent Cafés: Creating Conversation, Community and Positive Outcomes
Bainum Family Foundation
Describes the use of Parent Cafés, in which parents hold small-group discussions about how they can strengthen their families.
The Role of Social Networks Among Low-Income Fathers: Findings From the PACT Evaluation (PDF - 451 KB)
Valdovinos D'Angelo, Knas, Holcomb, & Edin (2016)
Mathematica Policy Research
Describes findings from the second round of the qualitative study of the Parents and Children Together evaluation, which measures the impacts and implementation of four Responsible Fatherhood programs.
Social Connections and Self-Care
North Carolina Division of Social Services & Family and Children’s Resource Program (2015)
Fostering Perspectives, 19(2)
Highlights the importance of social connections and self-care for resource parents and provides a list of foster parent associations and support groups in North Carolina.
What Makes Your Family Strong?
Great Start Collaborative
Describes actionable steps to help families build protective factors.