- January-February 2016
- Vol. 16, No. 10
Be Strong Families Parent Cafés
In 2007, Be Strong Families developed Parent Cafés, a process that encourages communities to bring parents together and engage in conversation on strengthening their families. Parent Cafés focus on the importance of building protective factors, not only into their relationships with their children, but with fellow parents as well. Protective factors highlighted by Be Strong Families include the following:
- Parental resilience—be strong and flexible
- Social connections—parents need friends
- Concrete support in times of need—we all need help sometimes
- Knowledge of parenting and child development—being a great parent is part natural and part learned
- Social and emotional competence of children—parents need to help their children communicate
Parent Cafés have been proven to result in reduced stress, increased parenting knowledge and skills, and lead to opportunities for parent leadership. For communities and groups new to offering Parent Cafés, Be Strong Families now offers Parent Café in a Box. This learning tool, intended to facilitate conversation among participants, includes a set of cards with hundreds of questions that focus on the protective factor topic areas.
For more information on Parent Cafés, visit http://www.bestrongfamilies.net/build-protective-factors/parent-cafes/.
The National Child Abuse Prevention Month 2015 Prevention Resource Guide: Making Meaningful Connections promotes and discusses Parent Cafés as a good tool for engaging parents directly in building protective factors for themselves and their families. Access the Prevention Resource Guide via Child Welfare Information Gateway at https://www.childwelfare.gov/topics/preventing/preventionmonth/resource-guide/.