The Offord Centre for Child Studies at McMaster University is looking for families with young children (2 to 6 years of age) to participate in a research study funded by Public Health Canada. The focus of the study is to evaluate two parenting programs: The Triple P – Positive Parenting Program and Circle of Security Parenting Program (COSP). Both programs offer ways for caregivers to develop practical skills, which can help decrease challenging behaviours and emotions in young children and help improve the families’ relationship. Previous research has shown how positive parenting practices improve child outcomes and parent-child relationships.

McMaster is collaborating with four agencies in Ontario, including Pathstone Mental Health here in Niagara. All agencies use a family-centred approach based on principles of respecting the beliefs, values, and culture of every family.

What are the programs?
Triple P aims to reduce behavioural and emotional problems in children and improve parenting practices by increasing parents’ levels of knowledge, skills, and confidence. Through the program, parents learn the causes of child behaviour, how to set specific goals and apply strategies to promote child development, manage misbehaviour and plan for high-risk situations.

COSP focuses on increasing caregiver sensitivity and reducing risk of insecure attachment. The program aims to change a child’s behaviour by changing the caregiver’s response to their child by increasing the caregiver’s ability to understand their child, increasing sensitivity to their child, and focusing on parent’s emotional regulation.

The purpose of the study is to evaluate the effectiveness of the two parenting programs, to understand which program families benefit from the most, and if they are better than the brief services at the agencies.

What is the research study?
Parents/caregivers who agree to participate will be randomly assigned by chance, like the flip of a coin, to one of three programs through Pathstone, Triple P, COSP, or an existing service (specific service at Pathstone is the STAR program). There are 4 study visits over the course of about 15 months and 2 brief check-ins. Study visits consist of online questionnaires and a short virtual interaction between the parent/caregiver and child. As well, caregivers will receive gift cards for participating in the research study visits (a total of $350).

If you, or anyone you know, has a child from 2-6 years old and would be interested in participating in the study, please visit or call toll-free at 1-833-511-2628 to learn more. We look forward to hearing from you!

Raising Strong Kids Study Research Team
Phone 1-833-511–2628

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