What are Effective Employment Strategies for Non-Custodial Parents?

Date of Paper


Type of Paper

Clinical research paper

Degree Name

Master of Social Work (M.S.W.)


Social Work

First Advisor

Felicia Washington Sy


Social Work


The role of the Non Custodial Parent (NCP) in the life of a child has been and continues to be a challenging social dilemma. For over a century, the United States government has struggled with how to insure the welfare of children when one of the parents is absent from that child’s life. A continually evolving social policy, Child Support Enforcement (CSE) was strengthened in 1996 to enforce the absent parents financial responsibility for the child, offsetting the expense of public assistance. This project explored the employment strategies that would promote the capacity of absent fathers to support their children. A qualitative thematic synthesis was conducted using four national demonstration projects that explored strategies to promote employment, improved relationship with the child and an increased participation in Child Support Enforcement services. Final reports of each of the projects was reviewed, coded for service tasks and then analyzed to develop themes from which to draw conclusions on best practice strategies to support NCP’s. Findings indicated that case management services and peer support through content focused education groups provided value to the struggles of NCP’s. Participants reported becoming better parents, CSE offices showed improved participation and employment/ personal income increased for the most challenged NCP’s. This research can be used as a guide to improve local child support work to promote the better welfare of children.

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