Kristina Gordon, associate professor of psychology, recently received a 3-year, $2.16 million demonstration grant from the Administration for Children and Families to implement the Marriage Check-up in an community-based integrative health care facility. James Cordova of Clark University is a collaborator. The Administration for Children and Families (ACF), within the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS), is responsible for federal programs that promote the economic and social well-being of families, children, individuals, and communities. ACF programs aim to achieve the following:
- families and individuals empowered to increase their own economic independence and productivity;
- strong, healthy, supportive communities that have a positive impact on the quality of life and the development of children;
- partnerships with front-line service providers, states, localities, and tribal communities, to identify and implement solutions that transcend traditional program boundaries;
- services planned, reformed, and integrated to improve needed access; and
- a strong commitment to working with vulnerable populations including people with developmental disabilities, refugees, and migrants, to address their needs, strengths, and abilities.
The Marriage Check-up is a new intervention that uses motivational interviewing principles to help couples at all levels of functioning to identify strengths and vulnerabilities in their relationships and increase their motivation to use their strengths to address the vulnerabilities and make their relationships stronger.
The goal is to help couples use their own resources to improve their marriages, to reduce the stigma of seeking help for their relationships, and to connect struggling partners with community resources to help them deal with identified problems. As part of this latter goal, the project will also provide groups to teach couples relationship skills and will partner with a local agency to provide groups to help them deal with major financial and employment issues.
Visit the Quest Gallery at Trace, UT’s digital archive, to access publications of other Quest Scholars of the Week.