Assessment of a program aimed at maximizing the cognitive potential of children from low-resource families

Many children from impoverished urban communities are challenged by obstacles to their intellectual and behavioral development. Mothers' abilities to buffer the impacts of these factors may be compromised when mothers themselves are cognitively vulnerable. The MOM Program at the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia is an innovative intervention to support mothers to enable their children to participate in early intervention services, primary medical care, and in Head Start. A controlled trial of the intervention with 302 women and their infants has been under way since 2001. This grant supports a final evaluation of the children at five years of age. Preliminary results of the program indicate that the intervention group is more likely to participate in the early intervention and Head Start activities, particularly among children of mothers with lower cognitive ability. Funding will support the final assessment of children's cognitive ability, phonological process and behavior through the key transition point when children are able to enter kindergarten. Studies have documented that maternal cognitive ability is associated with child behavioral outcomes. In families living in low-resource communities, the children of mothers with lower cognitive ability represent a particularly high-risk and vulnerable population. The project deliverables will include a complete assessment of children's cognitive and behavioral status at five years of age in order to evaluate whether the intervention is helpful in improving developmental and cognitive outcomes for children. Should it prove beneficial, the results will be useful in advocating for improved support for women with young children in urban areas in obtaining early intervention services.

Grant Details

Amount Awarded $134,400.00

Awarded on: 8/24/2006

Time frame: 10/1/2006 - 5/31/2007

Grant Number: 58418


Children's Hospital of Philadelphia

34th Street and Civic Center Boulevard
Philadelphia, 19104-4399


Donald F. Schwarz
Project Director