WSU CAHNRS

for Parents and Youth 10-14 Years

Strengthening Families Program

Implementation Tips

Facilitators | Site Coordinator | Recruitment | Transportation Meals | ChildcareGraduation | Incentives | Materials | Photo Release Form in English  | Photo Release Form in Spanish/Autorización Para Publicar Fotografía


Here is a list of tips for implementation gathered from facilitators over the years. Submit your tips to: sfp@wsu.edu

Facilitators

  • Choices for staff can determine program success
  • Four facilitators; two youth, two parent
  • Choose a man and woman for both adult and youth groups when possible
  • Demonstrate a change of voice; respectful cooperation
  • Match participants’ ethnicity when possible
  • Professionals- counselors, pastors, educators; nonprofessionals – concerned adults
  • Allow five hours for preparations, delivery, and debriefing after class
  • Periodic meetings for facilitators
  • Become a coach for parents – catch them doing well like during dinner……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………… Back to top

Site Coordinator

  • Recruit for the teen panel for the last night. This is something that needs to happen early in the program to assure there are enough teens present on the last night
  • Handles room/ space set-up, food transportation, babysitting
  • “Nothing reads respect like things ready and right”
  • Extra touches like place cards with family names, tablecloths, greeter
  • Communicates with participants and facilitators, supports and supervises facilitators, coordinates recruitment
  • On-site during program; able to pitch-in, handle problems that arise
  • Ideally, half-time
  • When supplied by host agency, the person has a better knowledge of site, audience, class materials, equipment needed, etc.
  • Make weekly phone calls to families – remind them and ask if they have any concerns……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………… Back to top

Recruitment

  • First time it’s conducted you’ll have the highest attrition and lowest finish
  • Invite twice as many families as you need
  • Consider participants as your guest; provide for their comfort, convenience; make coming to class easy and attractive
  • Send invitations to families a week before class
  • Begin with an orientation session – parents can invite friends for first week
  • Try to include opportunities for families to make up a session if missed
  • Send flyers home in school envelopes
  • Put up flyers in public spots like grocery stores, Laundromats, etc.
  • Work with a school counselor to help identify potential families
  • Identify a core group of several families, invite them to an introductory meeting and ask them to invite one or two other families to join them
  • Include initiation in church bulletins
  • Presentations to social groups, service organizations
  • PTAs / PTOs as hosts, facilitators, source of families, meal preparation and extra volunteers
  • Letters given on parents night at school
  • Exhibits/displays at Family Night Out
  • Invite prospective parents to graduation of current program (see below)
  • Get publicity for current class; feature story; public interest
  • Visit businesses, churches, and other community entities to encourage support
  • Consider calling “Booster Sessions” “Reunions” – invite more than one class
  • Offer open bi-monthly “reunions”
  • Give graduates “rewards” for recruiting new families
  • Let parents invite guests to graduation
  • Invite graduates to the first dinner of the next class
  • List on community website
  • List on school / community center reader board……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………… Back to top

Transportation

  • Pick folks up with a van from organization or agency
  • Rides provided by agency or organization personnel
  • Carpooling by location
  • Bus tickets or tokens
  • Gas vouchers
  • Pay for taxis……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………… Back to top

Meals

  • Depending on timing of class, schedule before, during (at the break) or after
  • Churches donate food and preparation by week or session
  • Potlucks
  • One meal choice and everyone brings a different part of the meal (examples: tacos, potatoes, or pizza)
  • Community service project of older youth
  • Vouchers to buy basics if folks might do a potluck or cook – disposition to share
  • Families often like to feel that they are contributing and want to share with others
  • Match a grant with food donations
  • Service group might provide by the week or session……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………… Back to top

Childcare

  • Older trained youth who have completed certificate baby-sitting class
  • Class hosted by church or other group with facility on-site
  • Community service by trained individuals
  • Provided by after school program
  • RSVP volunteers or service club
  • Can sometimes use the term “babysitting” because the standards are less stringent than for child care
  • Trained, older high school students when supervised……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………… Back to top

Graduation

  • Take pictures weekly for graduation ceremony
  • Invite prospective families to the graduation
  • Invite local media, politicians
  • Framed certificates
  • Family pictures on certificates
  • Special food, music, entertainment, take photos, create video……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………… Back to top

Incentives – What to give and when to give it

Don’t underestimate what a man will do for a piece of ribbon. ~ Napoleon

 What to give

  • Donations from service clubs
  • Donations from local businesses
  • Pizza eat-in or takeout and movie rental certificates
  • Board games
  • Casinos provide cash chips, games, pop, popcorn
  • Groceries, grocery vouchers
  • Household staples
  • Family events like baseball games, basketball, etc. (farm/minor league sports)
  • Fair tickets, miniature golf coupons
  • Ice cream certificates, pizza certificates
  • Dental supplies
  • School supplies – pencils, paper, notebooks
  • Long distance phone cards
  • McDonald’s certificates or other fast food treats
  • CD / DVD players
  • Bikes, scooters, sleds
  • Leftovers from supper

When to give

  • Unpredictable rewards work well
  • Progress with parenting skills
  • Positive behavior for youth
  • Completion of home practice
  • Attendance – or roll call / coming on time
  • Door prizes
  • Graduation
  • Rigged drawings to reach every family
  • Extra treats for folks who have brought back completed shields and trees
  • Class completion bonus

Material

Kitsap County facilitator Diane Warwick has kindly provided her amazing list of materials needed for each night of the program. You can access the list here: Materials
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Photo Release Form in English

Click here for a photo release form in English
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Photo Release Form in Spanish/Autorización Para Publicar Fotografía

Click here for a photo release form in Spanish
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Strengthening Families Program, PO Box 644852, Washington State University, Pullman WA 99164-4852, (866) 206-7156, Contact Us
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