University of Rochester

Children's Institute Program Earns National Recognition for Helping Children Adjust to Changes When Parents Divorce

February 22, 2005

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services has acknowledged the success of the Children of Divorce Intervention Program (CODIP) of Children's Institute with a national Program Excellence Award.

JoAnne Pedro-Carroll, director of program development at Children's Institute and founder of CODIP, accepted the award in Washington last month. Six different studies conducted since the creation of the program in 1982 demonstrate that Children of Divorce eases the impact of divorce by working through children's adjustment to family changes, and promotes their healthy development.

Program Excellence Awards are presented by the federal department to programs with a proven track record of effectiveness. To be eligible for the award, programs must undergo a thorough review by national experts, and are rated on criteria such as relevance to the needs of children and youth, scientific rigor, and quality of the research documenting its impact on the lives of children and youth.

Studies on CODIP with children of different ages and demographic backgrounds show that the program improved children's social, emotional, and school adjustment, and enhanced their capacity to cope with family changes.

Children's Institute is a not-for-profit organization based in Rochester with a mission to strengthen children's social and emotional health. The institute's emphasis on early intervention programs based on continuing research and rigorous evaluation grew from the work of University of Rochester psychologists who were pioneers in the field.

Pedro-Carroll, associate professor in the Department of Clinical and Social Sciences in Psychology at the University, is considered one of the country's leading experts on the effects of divorce on children and families.

Sound research and evaluation allows Children's Institute to develop and promote effective prevention and early intervention programs, materials, and best practices for children, families, schools, and communities.

For more information on Children's Institute, visit the Web site at