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Riding the Rapids: living with autism or disability - an evaluation of a parenting support intervention for parents of disabled children

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JournalResearch in Developmental Disabilities
DateE-pub ahead of print - 18 Jun 2014
DatePublished (current) - 2014
Issue number10
Volume35
Number of pages13
Pages (from-to)2371-2383
Early online date18/06/14
Original languageEnglish

Abstract

Evidence on the effectiveness of interventions to support parents of disabled children to manage their child's behaviour problems is limited. The aim of this study was to evaluate a group-delivered intervention (Riding the Rapids) which was specifically developed for parents of a child with a disability or autistic spectrum condition. This programme has been routinely delivered by a community-based mental health team across an urban, multi-ethnic locality for a number of years. A non-randomised controlled study design comprising an intervention group (n = 48) and comparator (no intervention) group (n = 28) was used to evaluate the effects of the intervention on child behaviour (Eyberg Child Behaviour Inventory, parent-set goals) and parenting efficacy and satisfaction (Parents Sense of Competence Scale) at post-intervention and six-month follow-up. Data on costs to the service provider of delivering the intervention were also collected. Receipt of the intervention was associated with significant reductions in parent-reported behaviour problems and significant improvements in parenting efficacy and satisfaction. At six-month follow-up, progress towards achieving parent-set child behaviour goals and parenting satisfaction had been maintained. Post hoc analysis suggests parents who do not have English as a first language may not benefit as much as other parents from this intervention. Findings suggest this is a promising intervention for parents of a child with a disability that is likely to be less resource intensive to service providers than individually delivered interventions. Limitations and implications for future research are discussed.

    Research areas

  • disabled children, autism spectrum disorders, behaviour, interventions, parents, effectiveness

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