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How the Protective Factors Framework Can Enhance Your Work

The Strengthening Families Framework is a research-informed approach which enhances protective factors in families by increasing their strengths, combating the effects of toxic stress, and reducing the likelihood of child abuse and neglect. The framework focuses on engaging all families, programs and communities. Our training is beneficial for anyone who works with children and families. It includes materials on partnering with parents and concrete examples of everyday actions that are effective in strengthening families.

Core Content

The training programs are comprehensive and can be customized to suit a particular group or organization’s needs. Participants will learn practical skills that they can utilize daily in their work with children and families to enhance the quality of care they provide.

Trainings include:

  • Up to seven courses
  • Real-life parent stories that document the power of building protective factors
  • Courses are interactive and engaging; feature videos and hands-on activities
  • List of resources, references and websites to support each course

Introduction to the Strengthening Families Framework

Course Description:

This course sets the foundation for the curriculum and is a pre-requisite for all of the other courses. Clients will receive in-depth training and an overview of the framework with a brief explanation of how it applies to their day-to-day work using videos, activities and interactive lessons. Each participant will receive a package which consists of an overview and handouts for the course.

Essential Elements of Course Include:

  • Introduction to Strengthening Families Protective Factors Framework Logic Model
  • Strength-based Theory
  • Five Protective Factors
  • Every Day Actions that Build Protective Factors
  • Understanding and Putting Aside our Biases
  • The Critical Role Parents Play in Strengthening Families

Course Goals:

  • List 5 protective factors that help keep families strong and prevent child abuse and neglect
  • Identify multiple strategies and concrete every day actions that help families build those protective factors
  • Understand what it means to work with families in a strength-based way
  • Become familiar with the Strengthening Families Framework self-assessment and explore ways it can be used

Parental Resilence: Teaching Parents to Develop Inner Strength

Course Description:

This course will help you define and recognize signs of parental resilience; identify actions you can take to build the resilience of parents with whom you work; and share examples of ways to support parents and to respond to families in times of crises. You will be encouraged to integrate these concepts into your everyday practice with families.

Essential Elements of Course Include:

  • Learning to define resilience and what it looks like for families
  • Learning how parental resilience fits into the framework (Logic Model)
  • Learning everyday actions that build resilience
    • Valuing and supporting parents
    • Honoring family culture
    • Respond to family crisis
    • Building partnership with parents benefits everyone

Course Goals:

  • Define and recognize signs of parental resilience
  • Identify actions you can take to help parents build their resilience in your work
  • Give examples of program efforts to value and support parents
  • Give examples of program efforts to respond to family crisis
  • Identify steps you will take to integrate these ideas into your work

Social Connections: Teach Parents to Build a Support System

Course Description:

This course will allow you to understand the value of helping parents and families connect to others in a variety of ways that will reduce their isolation and increase their social supports. You will also consider ways to partner with parents to help foster these kinds of connections. Finally, you will create some concrete plans to assist parents in developing new and positive sources of support, both in the workplace and the community.

Essential Elements of Course:

  • Learn to define social connections
  • Learn the antidote to social isolation
  • Learn the important role of communication
  • Learn the connection between social connections and parental involvement
  • Learn how building social connections fits into the framework (Logic Model)
  • Learn everyday actions that build positive social connections:
    • Help families value, build, sustain and use social connections
    • Create an inclusive environment
    • Facilitate mutual support around parenting and other issues
    • Promote engagement in the community and participation in community activities

Course Goals:

  • Understand the value of helping parents and families connect to others in various ways that reduce isolation and increase social support
  • Discuss at least three ways to encourage parents to make these connections
  • Create concrete plans to assist parents in developing new friendships and finding new sources of support in the workplace or community

Knowledge of Parenting and Child Development: Teaching Parents Key Milestones and Parenting Techniques

Course Description:

In this course, you will define what it means for parents to have knowledge of parenting and child development and identify actions you can take to help increase this knowledge among the families you serve. You will also create a plan to intentionally integrate these ideas into your everyday work.

Essential Elements of Course Include:

  • Learn why it’s important for parents to build knowledge of parenting and child development
  • Explore how culture influences knowledge
  • Learn how knowledge fits into the framework (Logic Model)
  • Learn every day actions that build knowledge:
    • Model developmentally appropriate interactions with children
    • Provide information and resources on parenting and child development
    • Encourage exploration of parenting issues or concerns
    • Provide opportunities to try out new parenting strategies
    • Address parenting issues from a strength based perspective
  • Learn to help parents strengthen parenting skills
  • Learn to create an environment where parents are comfortable in asking for help

Course Goals:

  • Define what it means for parents to have knowledge of parenting and child development
  • Identify actions you can take to help strengthen parenting among families
  • Create a plan to integrate these ideas into your work

Concrete Support in Times of Need: Teach Parents to Get the Help They Need

Course Description:

In this course, you will learn of ways you can provide welcoming, non-threatening support to families.

You will be challenged to think of ways you can link families to services and opportunities in their communities and to consider ways in which culture and tradition can play into the challenge of doing this. We will also reflect on ways that a lack of support, when under stress, can sometimes lead to child maltreatment.

Essential Elements of Course:

  • Learn that all families need support
  • Learn how providing concrete support fits into the framework (Logic Model)
  • Learn everyday actions that build concrete support:
    • Respond immediately when families are in crisis
    • Provide information and connections to other services in the community
    • Help families develop skills and tools to identify their needs and connect to supports

Course Goals:

  • Give examples of how you can provide welcoming, non-threatening support to families
  • List several ways you can link to partners in the community to help families in need
  • Identify the challenges and opportunities culture and tradition present as you try to help families
  • Recognize how lack of support, when under stress, can sometimes lead to child maltreatment

Social and Emotional Competence of Children: Teach Children to Express Feelings

Course Description:

In this course, you will learn about the characteristics of children who are emotionally healthy. You will discuss realistic expectations for the incorporation of this protective factor at various developmental stages and how healthy social and emotional competence can help make child maltreatment less likely to occur. You will see examples of how parents and other caregivers can develop strategies that will help children to grow emotionally and socially. You will also create an action plan to intentionally integrate effective strategies into your everyday work.

Essential Elements of Course:

  • Learn why it is important for children to become socially and emotionally healthy
  • Define social and emotional competence
  • Learn how culture and temperament influences children
  • Learn various developmental stages
  • Learn about the family context
  • Learn the pathway to improved outcomes for children and families (Logic Model)
  • Learn everyday actions that build social and emotional competence of children:
    • Help parents foster their children’s social and emotional development
    • Include children’s social and emotional development activities in programming
    • Help children develop a positive cultural identity and interact in a diverse society
    • Respond proactively when social and emotional development seem to need support

Course Goals:

  • List several characteristics of children who are emotionally healthy and who demonstrate social skills appropriate for their age or environment
  • Identify what is realistic to expect in terms of social and emotional skills for children at different developmental stages
  • Recognize how this protective factor can help make child maltreatment less likely to occur
  • Give examples of how parents and other caregivers can develop strategies that will help children to grow emotionally and socially

Wrap-Up: Moving from Knowledge to Action

Course Description:

After deep exploration of each of the protective factors, it is important to review what you have learned; reflect on how you can strengthen families in your personal and work experiences; and reexamine not only how you do your work, but why you do it. In this course you will review basic information about the Strengthening Families Protective Factors Framework in order to feel confident in your understanding of this approach. You will be encouraged to recognize and acknowledge ways that systems and policy changes can play in establishing this way of working with families as “the new normal.” Finally, you will create an action play to begin intentionally integrating, or continue to expand, the use of these ideas and strategies in your everyday work.

Essential Elements:

  • Review the Logic Model: Seeing the big picture
  • Review core functions to implement in everyday work
  • Review importance of building parent partnerships
    • Deepen knowledge and understanding
      Shift practice, policy, and systems
    • Ensure accountability
  • Quick review of protective factors and everyday actions
  • Review and reflect on learning
  • Assess how to implement this approach to learning into work environment

Course Goals:

  • Feel confident in your understanding of the Strengthening Families Framework, the five protective factors, and strategies and concrete actions to help build protective factors
  • Recognize the role that systems and policy changes can play in establishing this way of working with families as “the new normal”
  • Begin integrating these ideas into your work or continue doing so if you have already started

More Information

For more information about our trainings and to discuss flexible pricing options, please complete the form below and a member of the Center for Care Coordination will contact you. 

Protective Factors Framework Training - OCCH
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