Promoting Family Engagement, Stability, and Well-Being Through Youth-Enrichment Grants

Publisher: Washington, DC: Mathematica Policy Research
Jun 30, 2018
Jonathan McCay and Lily Roberts
Over an 11-month period, the Larimer County Works Program disbursed 282 grants (up to $200 each) 166 families as part of this “no strings attached” initiative for children ages 12 to 18 whose parents had an active Works Program case. This brief documents the experiences of a subset of families who received enrichment grants, based on survey feedback and short interviews with select parents. Overall, parents reported highly positive experiences for their families and indicated more favorable views toward the Works Program. At least three themes emerged from interviews with parents regarding their families’ grant experiences: (1) the empowerment of children in choosing how to use their grant funds; (2) greater social connectedness for children through grant-funded activities; and (3) strengthening of families around enrichment activities, such as sporting events or arts activities. The brief also highlights the perspectives of coaches regarding this innovative approach to encouraging engagement.