Father & Baby: Parent Aide Program

After being left in the care of friends, a 3-month-old baby boy was hospitalized due to breathing problems. It was discovered that he had fractured ribs and a broken leg. No one took responsibility for these injuries, although it was later presumed that a male friend of the mother had been responsible. Upon his release from the hospital, the baby was placed in foster care.

Initially, the parents were very resistant to parent aide services, still not fully accepting their own responsibility for the child’s injuries. The parent aide provided supervised visitation with the baby, and the family attended these visits regularly. While the mother remained resistant to other services, the father began working diligently, realizing that his son’s return was contingent upon him utilizing available resources.

The mother refused to apply for public assistance or to participate in the JOBSplus! program, and showed very little interest in any of the help and support that the parent aide tried to provide. On the other hand, the father took every bit of help offered and used it to the best of his ability. He complied with Child Protective Service’s request that he obtain public assistance and his own apartment away from the mother. He participated in the JOBSplus! program in order to ensure that he maintained an income and began working to obtain his GED. He actively utilized all of the suggestions of the parent aide, and steadily grew in his role as father. The baby was returned to the father’s care in time to celebrate his first birthday.

This father continues to live on his own with his child, has recently embarked on a new, seemingly-healthy adult relationship, and works with the parent aide to build new skills as his child grows and the demands of parenting change. His great strengths are his love for his child and his desire to nurture and provide for him.