Program Factsheet

Multidimensional Treatment Foster Care

Multidimensional Treatment Foster Care (MTFC) is a program for youth who are in need of out-of-home placement due to significant social, emotional, or behavioral problems. MTFC is appropriate for youth ages 3 through 17 and are referred from the juvenile justice, foster care, or mental health systems. The goals of MTFC include reducing problem behavior and increasing prosocial behavior through the placement of youth with MTFC-trained foster parents. A long-term goal of MTFC is to transition youth home to their biological family or to an adoptive family. MTFC is available in three versions, including a version for adolescents ages 12-17 (MTFC-A), a version for children ages 6-11 (MTFC-C), and a version for preschoolers ages 3-5 (MTFC-P).

Domains

  • Parenting

Developmental Phases

  • Early Childhood
  • Childhood
  • Early Adolescence
  • Adolescence

Related Constructs

Homepage

http://www.mtfc.com/

Key Links

TFC Consultants, Inc. Gerard, Bouwman, President 1163 Olive Street Eugene, OR 97401 Phone: (541) 343-2388 ext. 204 Fax: (541) 343-2764 Email: gerardb@mtfc.com

TFC Consultants, Inc. Rena Gold, Vice President of Implementations 1163 Olive Street Eugene, OR 97401 Phone: (541) 343-2388 ext. 210 Fax: (541) 343-2764 Email: renag@mtfc.com

How it Operates

MTFC-A, the adolescent version of MTFC, is designed for youth needing out-of-home placement due to significant delinquency or antisocial behavior. MTFC-A youth are typically referred via the juvenile justice, probation officers, mental health, or child welfare systems. Youth enrolled in MTFC-A receive 6-9 month placements with MTFC-A-trained foster parents. In addition, MTFC-A youth receive individual therapy, skills training, and academic support interventions. These interventions are implemented across settings (e.g., home, school, community) and are supervised by an MTFC supervisor. MTFC-A youth’s biological families are also invited to participate in family therapy as part of the intervention process.

Children in the MTFC-C program are typically placed with MTFC-C-trained foster parents for 9-12 months due to significant social, emotional, or behavioral problems. MTFC-C children are typically referred from the child welfare or mental health systems. MTFC-C children receive individual therapy, skills training, and academic support interventions that are implemented across settings (e.g., home, school, community) and are supervised by an MTFC supervisor. MTFC-C children’s biological families are also invited to participate in family therapy as part of the intervention process.

The MTFC-P program serves as an alternative to residential treatment for preschoolers ages 3-5. The goal of the program is to promote more positive and secure attachments and permanent placements. MTFC-P foster parents are recruited, screened, and receive at least 12 hours of training prior to receiving a placement. MTFC-P foster parents receive ongoing support and supervision from MTFC supervisors. Other integral team members include skills trainers/playgroup staff members, a family therapist, a Parent Daily Report (PDR) caller, and a consulting psychiatrist.

Training Required

Programs that use the Multidimensional Treatment Foster Care system must be certified or must be receiving ongoing clinical supervision from TFC Consultants, Inc as part of the certification process. Consultants from TFC work directly with communities to successfully implement the MTFC program. This includes a community site-visit by TFC Consultants, participation in a four-day training workshop (located in Eugene, Oregon), consultation, 2-day training for foster-parents (at the organization/community location), WebPDR training, weekly telephone consultation, and reports. In order to adequately support a MTFC program, the following staff members are required: program supervisor, skills trainers/playgroup staff members, individual therapist, foster parent recruiter, trainer, family therapist, parent daily report (PDR) caller, and consulting psychiatrist. MTFC Program Supervisors are trained in the social learning treatment model and developmental psychopathology. MTFC foster parents are screened and receive intensive training before a youth is placed with them. Further, they receive supervision and support by a MTFC Program Supervisor. MTFC foster parents receive a minimum of 12 hours of training prior to receiving a placement child.

For more information on fees associated with certification and training, contact TFC Consultants.

Sampling of Key References Supporting Evidence Base for the Program


  1. Fisher, P. A., & Chamberlain, P. (2000). Multidimensional treatment foster care: A program for intensive parenting, family support, and skill building. Journal of Emotional and Behavioral Disorders, 8, 155-164.  

  2. Chamberlain, P., Fisher, P. A., & Moore, K. (2002). Multidimensional treatment foster care: Applications of the OSLC intervention model to high-risk youth and their families. In J. B. Reid, G. R. Patterson & F. J. Snyder (Eds.), Antisocial behavior in children and adolescents: A developmental analysis and model for intervention (pp. 203-218). Washington, DC: American Psychological Association  

  3. Chamberlain, P., Leve, L. D., & DeGarmo, D. S. (2007). Multidimensional treatment foster care for girls in the juvenile justice system: 2-year follow-up of a randomized clinical trial. Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, 75, 187-193.  

  4. Leve, L. D., & Chamberlain, P. (2007). A randomized evaluation of Multidimensional Treatment Foster Care: Effects on school attendance and homework completion in juvenile justice girls. Research on Social Work Practice, 17, 657-663.  

  5. Smith, D. K. (2004). Risk, reinforcement, retention in treatment, and reoffending for boys and girls in multidimensional treatment Foster care. Journal of Emotional and Behavioral Disorders, 12, 38-48.