The Strengthening Families Program: For Parents & Youth 10-14 has made a difference in thousands of families in all 50 states and in over 25 countries. Parents want to protect their children, but it’s challenging. Youth need skills to help them resist the peer pressure that leads to risky behaviors. Research shows that protective parenting improves family relationships and decreases the level of family conflict, contributing to lower level of substance use.
Strengthening Families is a free parenting program created by Iowa State University that is taught here in Rapid City by Catholic Social Service’s case manager, Luke Brown. The program involves parents and youth ages 10-14. “Love & Limits” is the theme of Strengthening Families with the intention of teaching parents how to balance love and discipline when it comes to raising their child.
The program is 2 hours long and meets once a week over the course of 8 weeks. The parents and youth are separated for the first hour to learn individually until the family session meets for the second hour to discuss what’s been learned. This program would not be possible without very generous volunteers who help with the youth. Parents and youth are then given the chance to discuss better communication, house rules, family meetings, and many other topics.