University-Community Partnerships & Parental Incarceration

The Peer Lab attended a webinar today hosted by the Child & Family Policy Consortium. We heard from three people working in various centers at the University of Minnesota. The point of the webinar was mainly to discuss how to establish and nourish community partnerships and how to communicate knowledge to multiple audiences. They used parental incarceration as an example.

We learned some sobering facts about parental incarceration. Over 5 million children have lived with someone who incarcerated during their childhood. In Minnesota, 1 in 6 children reports that a parent is currently or has previously been incarcerated. Having a parent incarcerated is often a major stressor for both children and families, so these rates have far reaching implications.

They also offered five tips for doing interdisciplinary work in the community. Although their suggestions were aimed at large research universities, I got some good ideas about how to approach our partnership with Birth to Five and how to communicate our results not only to Birth to Five but also to other audiences in Richmond and Wayne County.

Rachael Reavis