Evaluation of the Family TIES program: a family-centred intervention for youth aggression and connected problems
The Family TIES program at Batshaw Youth and Family Centres is a unique family-centered approach to treating problems of youth aggression and family dysfunction. The treatment mixes the principles of cognitive behavioural therapy, specifically aggression replacement training and the PEACE curriculum, and family therapy. A study to test the feasibility of the data collection strategy and to track change in the participants is near completion. The Centre for Research on Children and Families (McGill University) had committed $10,000 to supporting pilot research. Batshaw, a Montreal area agency offering global services under the child protection and young offender acts, provided $10,000 in matching funds, and contributed additional funds as required. Measures were administered to youth and parents both immediately before and a few weeks after the program. The ultimate goal is to identify problems that might threaten the validity of an eventual outcome study, and evaluate whether the youth and parents improve in areas targeted by this intervention. According to youth and parent reports, youth were found to have lower levels of aggression, anger, and other problems at the end of the program, as compared to before. Parents reported lower levels of anger, fewer problems related to supervising their children, and sweeping improvements in family functioning. However, there was considerable attrition from the study. A final report is being prepared.