Breaking the family cycle of absentee fathers takes a concerted effort. Making the case for including fatherhood development within a probation intervention for young dads is easy because it works. It works to:​ 

  • Focus young dads on successful probation completion;
  • Improve their ability to be responsible fathers and family members; and
  • Lighten the workload of probation officers through concentrated programming.

After 5 years of testing and tweaking, Cook County is ready to show the world their successful probation/fatherhood model. 

May 1, 2011

In This Report, You’ll Learn

  1. 1

    The impact fathers have on the behavior and achievement of their children.

  2. 2

    The development and implementation of the Bridges to Manhood (BTM) program in Cook County, Illinois, USA.

  3. 3

    The 14-week Cook County Juvenile Probation Office BTM curriculum.

  4. 4

    The tools to incorporate fatherhood development into probation intervention.

Key Takeaway

Children without fathers are at a disadvantage

Children without fathers are 3 times more likely to have criminal behavior, and 5 times more likely to live in poverty.

Sources: Fathers and Their Children, Fact Sheet 5, and Promoting Responsible Fatherhood, A TARC Resource Guide, Annie E. Casey Foundation., 2005.

Findings & Stats

Statements & Quotations