Strengthening Families Program
Strengthening Families Program Fall Registration
Online PR News – 09-October-2012 –Registration Now Open for justCommunity’s 2012 Fall Cycles of Strengthening Families Program (SFP 10-14)
This fall, Partners in Action for Community Togetherness (P.A.C.T.) is thrilled to announce the return of Strengthening Families Program: For Parents and Youth 10 - 14 (SFP) to the Palisades area. PACT will host two cycles this fall at the Palisades Middle School. Cycle one will take place on Monday nights from 6pm-8:30pm beginning October 8, 201 and Cycle 2 will begin October 18 from 6pm-8:30pm. Additional cycles will also be offered beginning November 1 from 6pm-8:30pm in Pennridge or November 1 from 6pm-8:30pm in Quakertown.
The research based program focuses on youth between the ages of 10-14 years old, their parents and caregivers. Families have the opportunity to enjoy seven weekly sessions filled with fun activities and interactions. The adults learn invaluable tips on how to best prepare their children for healthy and happy teen years. The discussions address normal developmental changes in teens, helping youth avoid risky behavior and substance use, effective joint problem solving and enhancing family communication. Meanwhile, youth learn and practice the keys to good decision-making, goal setting and attainment. They engage in fun activities that teach them how to resist negative peer pressure and cope with stress. Additionally, they are also taught tools that will help them strengthen their communication skills while learning empathy and gain a new appreciation for their parents and caregivers.
Through P.A.C.T., this program is offered at no cost to participating families. Each week, families enjoy a healthy, warm, catered communal dinner and are have childcare for younger siblings that are not participating in the program accessible to them. There are also raffles of gas cards each night for participating families. The Strengthening Families Program may be free, but the benefits of this tremendous program are priceless!
Participants from last school year’s inaugural session offered feedback upon their graduation from the program. The program facilitators were extremely pleased to find that both the youth and adults all returned such positive responses. The youth shared that their high points were the games, food and activities while also being able to spend time with their family…some youth participants quickly summed it all up and said they liked “everything”! Youth participants even admitted to learning how to think about their parent’s feelings when they are mad. The parents commented on the program’s ability to open up dialogue and communication while stressing the importance of seeing things from each other’s perspective. The family meals together were wonderful and they could not get over how much important information was covered in such a brief period.
Some of the most valuable things that parents felt that they learned included learning that they are not alone, how to really listen to youth and to love with limits. Two testimonials that stood out to the facilitators were:
“This program helped me bond with my child and opened up communication – helped her prepare for the challenges of the future.”
“This was a lot of fun and beneficial for everyone in our family. I would suggest this class to everyone!”
Registration for all cycles in Palisades, Pennridge and Quakertown is now open! Parents can register online by visiting: www.justcommunity.com/events or by calling Nina Stephens at 215-538-4799.
P.A.C.T is a volunteer-based coalition of community members. They were awarded a two-year grant through Communities that Care (CTC) and the Pennsylvania Commission on Crime and Delinquency. Research and data collection was performed to better understand the needs of our community and the coalition chose SFP because it o addresses so many of the critical issues that face our community youth today.