Skip to content

Dare to be You

Evidence rating
2
Cost rating
NA
Review: Foundations for Life, July 2016

Dare to be You (DTBY) aims to reduce the likelihood of adolescent substance misuse by promoting family resilience in at-risk families with a child between the ages of two and five years old.

Families meet for 10 to 12 weekly sessions over three or four months for two hours of string-activity workshops plus a family meal.

EIF Programme Assessment

Evidence rating
2

Dare to be You has preliminary evidence of improving a child outcome, but we cannot be confident that the programme caused the improvement.

What does the evidence rating mean?

Level 2 indicates that the programme has evidence of improving a child outcome from a study involving at least 20 participants, representing 60% of the sample, using validated instruments. 

This programme does not receive a rating of 3 as its best evidence is not from a rigorously conducted RCT or QED evaluation.

What does the plus mean?

The plus rating indicates that a programme’s best available evidence is based on an evaluation that is more rigorous than a level 2 standard but does not meet the criteria for level 3. 

Cost rating
NA

NA indicates that the information required to generate a cost rating is not available at this time.

Child outcomes

According to the best available evidence for this programme's impact, it can achieve the following positive outcomes for children:

Enhancing school achievement & employment

Improved child developmental level - based on study 1

Preventing crime, violence and antisocial behaviour

Reduced problematic behaviour - based on study 1

This programme also has evidence of supporting positive outcomes for couples, parents or families that may be relevant to a commissioning decision. Please see About the evidence for more detail.

Dare to be You

Key programme characteristics

Who is it for?

The best available evidence for this programme relates to the following age-groups:

  • Toddlers
  • Preschool

How is it delivered?

The best available evidence for this programme relates to implementation through these delivery models:

  • Group

Where is it delivered?

The best available evidence for this programme relates to its implementation in these settings:

  • Children's centre or early-years setting
  • Primary school
  • Secondary school
  • Sixth-form or FE college
  • Community centre

How is it targeted?

The best available evidence for this programme relates to its implementation as:

  • Targeted selective

Where has it been implemented?

United States

UK provision

This programme has not been implemented in the UK.

UK evaluation

This programme’s best evidence does not include evaluation conducted in the UK.

Dare to be You

About the programme

What happens during delivery?

How is it delivered?
  • Dare to be You is led by two preschool teachers who lead groups of families for 10 to 12 weekly sessions, over three or four months, of two-hour workshops that include a family meal. The sessions are offered during the duration of a preschool programme and booster sessions can be included at the end.
What happens during the intervention?
  • Dare to be You is led by two preschool teachers who lead groups of families for 10 to 12 weekly sessions, over three or four months, of two-hour workshops that include a family meal. The sessions are offered during the duration of a preschool programme and booster sessions can be included at the end.
  • Parents and their children attend the programme together.
  • The parent component focuses on personal and parenting efficacy, stress management, child development, and home management skills based on the four ‘Dare to be You’ principles:
    • Decision-making and problem-solving skills
    • Assertiveness in communication and conflict management
    • Responsibility for one's behavior, including internalised control and stress management
    • Esteem for oneself (eg self-efficacy) and others.
  • The child component builds cognitive skills, mastery motivation, social competencies, emotional knowledge and problem solving, decision making, self-management and communication skills. A key topic is covered at each workshop with developmentally appropriate activities for all ages.
  • The family component includes weekly family meals, social time and joint parent-child activities.
  • An incentive programme enhances recruitment and encourages programme completion, including family meals, a supportive, non-judgmental environment that builds on family strengths and a financial incentive for completion of all workshops ($200 for each adult family member that completes the programme).

What are the implementation requirements?

Who can deliver it?

Not available

What are the training requirements?

Not available

How are the practitioners supervised?

Not available

What are the systems for maintaining fidelity?
  • Fidelity monitoring
  • Face-to-face training
  • Training manual
Is there a licensing requirement?

Not available

How does it work? (Theory of Change)

How does it work?
  • Dare to Be You aims to increase children’s readiness to learn by teaching parents and children skills that promote children’s mastery motivation and behavior self-regulation.
  • Parents learn methods for encouraging children’s prosocial behavior and supporting their cognitive development. Parents also learn age-appropriate strategies for limiting unwanted child behaviours.
  • Children engage in activities aimed at increasing their persistence in difficult tasks and interacting positively with other children.
  • In the short term, parents show increased self-efficacy, an increase in positive parenting practices and a decrease in harsh discipline. Children show increased mastery motivation and reduced oppositional behavior.
  • In the long term, children are less likely to engage in risky behaviours and achieve well at school.
Dare to be You

About the evidence

Dare to be You’s most rigorous evidence comes a single RCT which was conducted in the USA.

Study 1

Citation: Miller-Heyl et al (1998)
Design: RCT
Country: United States
Sample: 802 parents with a child between two and five attending Head Starts in the southwestern USA
Timing: -
Child outcomes: Improved child developmental level
Reduced problematic behaviour
Other outcomes: Increased sense of competence
Increased satisfaction
Improved parenting strategies

Miller-Heyl, J., MacPhee, D., & Fritz, J.J. (2003). DARE to be You: A Family-support, early prevention program, The Journal of Primary Prevention. 18, 257-285.

Available at
https://link.springer.com/article/10.1023/A:1024602927381

Other studies

The following studies were identified for this programme but did not count towards the programme's overall evidence rating. A programme receives the same rating as its most robust study or studies.

MacPhee, D., & Fritz, J. (1999). DARE to Be You replication project, Colorado Sites:  Final Evaluation Report.

MacPhee, D., & Miller-Heyl, J. (2001). Head Start-University Partnership Grant, Dare to Be You Project: Final Evaluation Report. DHHS grant 906D0011.

Miller-Heyl, J., MacPhee, D., & Fritz, J.J. (1998). DARE to be You:  A Family-support, early prevention program, The Journal of Primary Prevention, 18, 257 – 285.                             

MacPhee, D., Miller-Heyl, J., & Carroll, J. (2014). Impact of the DARE to be You family support program: Collaborative replication in rural counties. Journal of Community Psychology, 42, 707-722. doi:10.1002/jcop.21647

Published March 2017   |   Last updated May 2017