Strengthening Families

The adolescent years are often a mystery to parents because of the unpredictable moods and behaviors of American teenagers.  This brings more conflict in the parent-child relationships and often an increase in negativity.  The stage of life known as adolescence brings out strong reactions in everyone, including teens themselves.  It is an awkward period of development were biological changes bring about sexual development followed by the attainment of adult roles and responsibilities.  Teens need parents and other adults in their lives to provide guidance and monitoring of activities so they can successfully navigate the adolescent stage of life to adulthood and independence.

An interactive family program will be offered to parents or caregivers and their youth ages 10-14 at the River Falls High School Tuesday evenings beginning April 16th, 2013 and ending May 28th.  Each session will begin at 5:30pm and end at 8:00pm.  The Strengthening Families Program is designed to help parents build on their strengths in showing love and setting limits, help young adolescents develop skills in handling peer pressure and building a positive future, and help families grow together.

A meal will be provided to families during the first half hour.  During the next hour, parents/caregivers and youth meet as separate groups with their facilitators.  During the last hour, parents and youth meet together as a family.  Each session contains a variety of activities including parent-youth discussions, games, projects, skill-building practice and game-like learning activities.

Parents that have attended the program state: “I wish I could have attended when my two older kids were this age.  We benefited very much.”  “I liked listening to what has worked with other families.”  Some youth comments about the program include: “I didn’t realize how much my mom cared about me.”  “I learned that my parents are fun to be with.”  “I learned to respect my parents and realize money doesn’t grow on trees.”

Positive Alternatives, Inc., is a private non-profit, community-based, multi-service organization serving youth and families in Wisconsin.  Through a continuum of family and strength-based services, Positive Alternatives strives to equip at-risk youth and young adults with the social, emotional and developmental skills needed to flourish.

A $250 fee per family is requested, however, this fee can be covered by the Children’s Long-Term Support Waiver or a scholarship opportunity.  It is the intention of this program that all interested families will be able to attend.  For additional information about the seven-week program or to register for the class, contact Hillary Kirsch, Positive Alternatives Community Educator at 715-235-9552.

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