Based on Research Conducted at OSLC

An intervention with 13- to 17-year-old females with histories of chronic criminal behavior and mental health problems referred from the juvenile justice system.

Project Overview

The Oregon Social Learning Center (OSLC) conducted this intervention study with 130 13- to 17-year-old females with histories of chronic criminal behavior and mental health problems, referred from the juvenile justice system. This study was designed to test the efficacy of a Treatment Foster Care of Oregon (TFCO) intervention compared to “community treatment as usual” and to investigate how the relationships that girls have with significant others (e.g., parents, mentors, friends, boyfriends) affect their proximal and long-term adjustment in diverse areas of functioning. An additional aim was to examine the relationship between key components of treatment and outcomes.

Participants were randomly assigned to participate in TFCO or in “usual” community treatment, most often placement to a Group Care home or residential facility. In TFCO, girls were matched with and placed in community families trained and supervised to provide girls with close supervision, adult mentoring, and consistent limits. Girls in TFCO received individual and family therapy, skill training, and academic support. Girls in the control condition were most often placed in aggregate care settings with 6-16 other youths. Typically they participated in group, family, and individual therapy. Study girls were assessed at frequent intervals throughout their placement periods and in follow-up. The study examined the characteristics and contexts of gender appropriate treatments that help girls reduce criminal activity, drug use, and health-risking sexual behavior and improve their supportive and productive relationships and level of functioning in the community.

Year Project Began: 2000
Funder: National Institute of Mental Health

Principal Investigator: