Preventive Interventions for Children
Two central problems have been recognized by many clinical researchers and practitioners during the past two decades. First, despite increased utilization of effective paraprofessional resources (Durlak, 1980), the proliferation of community mental health centers and crisis intervention programs (Rappaport, 1977), and the burgeoning self-help movement (Glasgow & Rosen, 1978), we still have inadequate helping resources relative to identified numbers of personal and social problems (e.g., Albee, 1967; Glidewell & Swallow, 1969; Meyers, Craighead, & Meyers, 1974; President’s Commission on Mental Health, 1978; Zax & Cowen, 1976). Second, the limited services that are available are still used infrequently and ineffectively by large segments of society in great need of assistance (Cowen, 1978; Lorion, 1978). For example, in a recent large-scale survey, Langer, Gersten, Greene, Eisenberg, Herson, and McCarthy (1974) noted that nearly twice as many impoverished inner-city children, compared with their less destitute urban peers, experienced “psychiatric or emotional disorders great enough to interfere markedly with their role functioning or incapacitate them” (p. 117).