Two examples of organizations that have successfully established Community Marriage Initiatives are MarriageSavers and First Things First.
MarriageSavers has helped over 220 cities establish Community Marriage Policies® (CMP). In addition to signing a community covenant, MarriageSavers requests that religious leaders pledge to train Mentor Couples to help other couples at every stage of the marital life cycle.
An independent study by the Institute for Research and Evaluation of 114 Community Marriage Policies found that, on average, divorce rates fell 17.5% over seven years, nearly double the 9.4% decline of similar cities in each state. Although a modest difference, it saved 30,000-50,000 marriages through 2001. In fact, seven cities slashed divorce rates by 48% or more. The study also found that cohabitation fell 13% in cities with Community Marriage Policies while it rose in similar cities by 19%.
A ministerial association in Elizabethtown recently implemented a MarriageSavers CMP. Click here to see a sample brochure from their efforts in Hardin County, Kentucky.
First Things First
First Things First is a non-profit organization dedicated to strengthening marriages and families in Hamilton County (Chattanooga), Tennessee through education, collaboration and mobilization. Their goal has been to reduce divorce and out-of-wedlock births and to increase father involvement in the lives of their children. Since they began in 1997, they have seen a 29 percent decrease in divorce filings and the divorce rate, as well as a 29 percent decrease in teen out-of-wedlock pregnancies.