Parenting in 2 Worlds: Effects of a Culturally Grounded Parenting Intervention for Urban American Indians on Participant Cultural Engagement

Stephen S. Kulis, Monica Tsethlikai, Mary L. Harthun, Patricia K. Hibbeler, Stephanie L. Ayers, Nicholet Deschine Parkhurst

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


Background: Culturally appropriate, evidence-based prevention programs are seldom available to the growing majority of American Indians (AIs) who now live in cities. Parenting in 2 Worlds (P2W), a culturally grounded parenting intervention, was created to strengthen family functioning and reduce behavioral health risks in urban AI families from diverse tribal backgrounds. Objectives: This study reports on the AI cultural engagement of the P2W participants as an outcome of the intervention. Method: Data came from 575 parents of AI children (ages 10-17) in a randomized controlled trial in three Arizona cities. Parents were recruited through urban Indian centers and randomized to P2W or to an informational family health curriculum, Healthy Families in 2 Worlds (HF2W). Both P2W and HF2W consisted of 10 workshops delivered weekly by AI community facilitators. Pretests and posttests measured identification and engagement with traditional AI heritage, culture and practices. Tests of the efficacy of P2W versus HF2W used baseline adjusted regression models using FIML estimation to adjust for attrition, including random effects (site, facilitator), and controlling dosage. Moderated treatment effects by pretest levels of cultural engagement were tested with mean centered interactions. Results: Compared to parents in HF2W, those in P2W reported significantly larger increases in AI ethnic identity, AI spirituality, and positive mainstream cultural identification. Increases in cultural engagement were significantly larger for P2W participants who were relatively less culturally engaged at pretest. Conclusions: Culturally adapted parenting interventions like P2W that effectively build on AI cultural heritage can also promote greater AI cultural identification and involvement.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalCultural Diversity and Ethnic Minority Psychology
Issue number4
StateAccepted/In press - Oct 2020


  • American Indian
  • Cultural engagement
  • Parenting
  • Prevention
  • Urban

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology
  • Sociology and Political Science


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