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  Free To Grow
  Mailman School
  of Public Health
  Columbia University
  722 West 168th Street,
  8th Floor
  New York, NY 10032

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NOTE: as of April 17, 2007, the Free to Grow program has closed.
Research & Policy

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Website Links

Parent Leadership Database
This website offers users', in a searchable database, nationally available parent leadership training models, the result of the work of a small group of parents from the Council for Parent Leadership, a project of the Minnesota Parenting Association, along with work from the Family Resource Coalition of America (FRCA).

Parent Service Project Website
Parent Service Project is a national nonprofit organization dedicated to integrating family support into early childhood programs through training, technical assistance and education. Its website offers information about its history, programs, resources, publications and its newsletter.

Partnership for a Drug-Free America (PDFA)
PDFA is a coalition of professionals from the communications industry who want to reduce the demand for drugs in America. The website furthers this mission by offering resources, research, news, and policy updates and a section for children and parents.

Promising Practices Network on Children, Families and Communities
The Promising Practices Network (PPN) website highlights programs and practices identified by credible research as effective in improving outcomes for children, youth, and families. The information offered is organized around three major areas: Proven and Promising Programs, Research in Brief, and Strengthening Service Delivery.

RAND is a nonprofit institution that helps to improve policy and decision making through research and analysis. RAND's areas of expertise include child policy, civil and criminal justice, education, health, and social welfare, among others. Users will find information, research findings, and publications, such as the Los Angeles Family and Neighborhood Survey, Investing in Our Children: What We Know and Don't Know About the Costs and Benefits of Early Childhood Interventions, The Effectiveness of Involuntary Outpatient Treatment: Empirical Evidence and the Experience of Eight States, and other reports.

Safe and Drug-Free Schools
This program is the federal government's primary vehicle for reducing drug, alcohol, and tobacco use and violence, through education and prevention activities in our nation's schools. It is designed to prevent violence in and around schools, and strengthen programs that prevent the illegal use of alcohol, tobacco, and drugs; involve parents; and are coordinated with related federal, state, and community efforts and resources. On this site, users will find publications, model programs, research, and funding information.

Search Institute
The mission of the Search Institute is to advance the well-being of adolescents and children by generating knowledge and promoting its application. To accomplish this mission, the Institute generates, synthesizes, and communicates new knowledge, convenes organizational and community leaders, and works with state and national organizations. At the heart of the Institute's activities is the framework of 40 developmental assets, which are positive experiences, relationships, opportunities, and personal qualities that young people need to grow up healthy, caring, and responsible. This website furthers this mission by providing information about the assets, other research, practical tools and resources, training, and limited telephone technical assistance.

Starting Early, Starting Smart
Starting Early Starting Smart (SESS) is a program designed to support the integration of substance abuse and mental health prevention and treatment services in primary care and early childhood sites. This website includes information about the program, the grantees, evaluation outcomes and publications.

Strengthening Families Program
This website features programs that have been selected as "best practices" in family strengthening. Users will find two-page summaries of family-focused programs that have been proven to be effective. Additional information, as well as direct links to individual program websites, is also provided.

Study Circles Resource Center
The Study Circles Resource Center helps communities to organize study circles—small-group, democratic, peer-led discussions that give people opportunities to make a difference in their communities. In study circle programs, communities across the country are bringing hundreds and sometimes thousands of diverse people into democratic, face-to-face groups to address critical issues, including racism and race relations, crime and violence, education reform, growth and sprawl, diversity, criminal justice, school violence, youth problems, and building strong neighborhoods. The website provides information on implementing study circles and on each of the issues mentioned above. The user also will find publications to review and program evaluation information.

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copyright 2008 Free To Grow
Free To Grow is a national program supported by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation with direction and technical assistance provided by the Mailman School of Public Health of Columbia University.