Child Welfare Research & Training Project

The Child Welfare Research and Training Project (CWRTP) at Iowa State University (ISU) is within the Department of Human Development and Family Studies (HD FS) in the College of Human Sciences. Since 1988, the State of Iowa and Iowa State University have established intergovernmental agreements to deliver services.

Through CWRTP, ISU faculty, staff, and students engage with Iowa state agencies, citizens, and other partners. Together, we develop, deliver, and evaluate programming to ensure that Iowa’s children, youth, families, and communities receive services and care informed by science and best practices that lead to safety and overall well-being. We evaluate programming and enhance outcomes through commitment to quality assurance, technical assistance, educational training, and evidence-based programming.

Primary Purpose

To facilitate the well-being of Iowa’s children, youth, families, and citizens by promoting best practices in human services.


Iowa’s children, youth, and families receive services and care informed by best practices that lead to safety and overall well-being.


To promote professional skills and practice among those who serve Iowa’s children, youth, families, and communities.

To accomplish this, CWRTP develops and delivers quality programming within three broad areas:

  • Educational training and technical support for human service professionals;
  • Outreach and consultation to schools, youth-serving organizations, hospitals, and communities;
  • Research and evaluation of program outcomes.

Within a synergistic environment, the focus across the various contracts within CWRTP includes curriculum development, training delivery, staff development, technology support, and program evaluation activities essential to delivering social, rehabilitative, treatment, and support services throughout Iowa.


Multiple external contracts and grants fund the work. These currently include agreements with the Iowa Health and Human Services (HHS) Division of Family Well-Being and Protection, Child Protective Services, Operations; HHS Division of Community Access, Child Support Services; HHS Division of Strategic Operations; HHS Volunteer Iowa; and YSS.


CWRTP typically employs approximately 30 professional staff, 18 undergraduate and graduate assistants, and AmeriCorps members, as well as numerous contracted specialists. In addition, four faculty PI/Co-PIs and ten advisory team members contribute expertise and guidance.

Core Foundation

We champion an open, accessible, inclusive, and affirming environment that honors all identities, cultures, and lived experiences.

Value Added

Each project within CWRTP has a specific purpose, staffing structure, and funding source. Across projects, interactions among staff who fulfill similar functional activities build knowledge and expertise. The shared goal of promoting best practices in human services strengthens, enriches, and adds value within and across time.

More detailed information about specific projects and activities is on our website:

Where to find us

CWRTP is located at the ISU Research Park in Building #6