Strengthening Families Initiative

Strengthening Families is a research based, cost-effective strategy to increase family stability, enhance child development and reduce child abuse and neglect. With a focus on protective factors, rather than risk factors, family strengths are enhanced. The Strengthening Families approach is based on the belief that all families can use support and enhancement of the five Protective Factors, instead of services being targeted only to those families identified as “at-risk.” We now know that families gain what they need to be successful when five protective factors are robust in their lives and communities.

Through the Strengthening Families Initiative, more than thirty states are shifting policy, funding, and training to help programs build these protective factors with the children and families they serve. Many states are also using the Strengthening Families approach to integrate state prevention strategies, focus on families in the child welfare system, and engage parents and communities.

Click to download the full report from the Center for the Study of Social Policy – The-Strengthening-Families-Approach-and-Protective-Factors-Framework_Branching-Out-and-Reaching-Deeper

2016 Grant – “Creating “Circles of Caring” in the Community” 
As businesses, medical providers and supportive service agencies recognize the vital role they can play in the lives of children and their families by helping build protective factors, the Cabell County Family Resource Network will create “Circles of Caring” around hundreds of families. Project strategies include unique learning and growth
opportunities through various community partners. Among these are a “Toddler Tuesday” series at the Huntington Mall; a community-based “Parent’s Playbook” series through Mountain State Health Families America; enhancing family engagement through the “Summer on the Terrace” series for families with young children through the Huntington Housing Authority’s Family Resource Center; focused outreach efforts with Marshall Medical School residents and Steel of West Virginia employees; and special parent & staff education through Lily’s Place, Huntington’s unique medical care home for babies suffering from prenatal drug exposure.

Funding for the grants is provided with support from the West Virginia Office of Maternal, Child and Family Health through combined funding from the following federal sources: Project LAUNCH, Home Visitation Expansion Grant, and Early Childhood Comprehensive Systems Grant. The grant term is February through September 2016.

2015 Grant – “Bloom Where You Are Planted”

“Bloom Where You Are Planted” is the name of a grant awarded to the Cabell County Family Resource Network in 2015 to expand work with Strengthening Families. Here is a brief summary of our proposal:

“One of West Virginia’s most urban counties is also a regional medical hub that increasingly has treated drug-exposed infants and their families from a large geographic area. A key goal of this project is to to engage and build protective factors and trauma informed care into training workshops with medical students and supportive service providers, as well as to link parents of vulnerable infants to direct support and information. In addition, the project seeks to engage one business in assessing human resource practices through a Strengthening Families lens and integrating protective factors into the workplace.”

To learn more about Strengthening Families WV, visit their website –