Front centre are Erin Richardson, chief executive, Developing Healthy Communities, Marie Dunne, Resilio, course facilitator and Leona Bradley, programme manager, Developing Healthy Communities.
The City Hotel in Derry was the venue for community, voluntary and statutory sector professionals from across Derry and Strabane to a wellbeing event hosted by Strengthening Families Pro- gramme, Developing Healthy Communities.
Facilitated by Marie Dunne, of Resilio, the event acknowledged the support provided to the Strengthening Families Programme by local professionals and illustrated the need for staff working in the community, voluntary and statutory sectors to look after their own mental health and wellbeing.
The Strengthening Families Programme is an inter- nationally-proven, evidence-based family skills programme and whilst used worldwide for more than 35 years now it has been delivered locally since 2011 by developing healthy communities, and is currently funded by Public Health Agency.
Course delivery takes place through a team of trained facilitators drawn from a range of local agencies, who deliver parent, child and family sessions over a fourteen weeks period.
For many people, raising children can be difficult unchartered territory, and it can be hard to find support. The Strengthening Families Programme helps parents identify risks that their teenagers face and help build in protective factors within the family home.
The course was also designed to aid families build and strengthen their communication skills, identify and build on their strengths, family resilience and set clear rules and boundaries.
Speaking at the end of the event, programme manager, Leona Bradley, said: “The Strengthening Families Programme not only provides excellent skills for families locally but also an opportunity for local agencies to work together in a unique interagency manner.
“The team who help deliver Strengthening Families are not only hugely talented but their passion to improve the lives of people locally is inspiring.
“Today was an opportunity to celebrate these staff and give them an opportunity to promote their own wellbeing and resilience. All too often we forget how much of themselves the community, voluntary and statutory sector workers give, particularly when working with families and young people and we are delighted to be able to give something back to them.’
Praising the funders and the team of facilitators for the successful delivery of the course, she continued: ‘We would like to thank the Public Health Agency in funding this worthwhile programme and today’s event and acknowledge the hard work and dedication of the multiagency team of facilitators who successfully delivered the sessions.’
This year a large-scale evaluation of the programme and its effects on local families has been commissioned by developing Healthy Communities.
Any families who have engaged with the programme and would like to provide any feedback for the evaluation can contact programme manager Leona at 02871611384 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
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