chapter
14 Pages

Young Dads

The Effects of a Parenting Program on Urban African-American Adolescent Fathers
WithCarl Mazza

Sixty urban African-American adolescent first-time fathers were randomly assigned to two groups to study intervention strategies that would help them develop better and more consistent relationships with their young children. The purpose of the study was to measure the impact of individualized social work intervention with African American adolescent fathers. The study focused on whether adolescent fathers responded differently to interventions focused on “adolescent issues” rather than only on being a “father”. Urban African-American adolescent fathers are hindered by historical limitations. They live in a society that considers them “lesser” as a result of racism; experience the prejudice that holds that fathers are the less important parents; and, often, lack adequate financial resources. Most of the young men in the experimental group recognized the importance of their role in raising and caring for a child; consequently, they took precautions to prevent another pregnancy. Further, the experimental program placed strong emphasis on family planning.