Strong Families Initiative (SFI)
Strong Families Initiative (SFI) is a Montgomery County program that works closely with select parishes, schools, and community-based organizations to provide youth and parents/guardians an outlet to discuss hardships they are facing and to be better equipped to face future difficulties.
SFI facilitates group circles where youth can comfortably discuss issues, while also learning about important skills needed to transition into positive adults. Youth circles emphasize the importance of words and actions and help students to build a community where they can be vulnerable and held accountable.
Group circles are also available for parents to discuss family adversity issues in a nonjudgmental environment. Parent groups focus on techniques to strengthen family cohesion, establish weekly goals, and build community that nourishes healing, growth, and learning.
In both groups, SFI underscores the importance of building community and learning to be our authentic selves as a way of restoring the individual and, thus, the family.
Youth groups are either in Spanish or both English and Spanish, and typically run for 12 to 15 weeks long and vary in ages.
Ages 11 to 13 have coed groups, while ages 14 – 17 years old usually are separated by gender, with some exceptions throughout the year. Each group aims to offer youth a safe space where they can speak openly about their challenges, set weekly goals, understand the importance of their words and actions, learn about important life and societal issues, while teaching them what is mean to be a positive adult and steps in becoming one. The importance of building community to find comfort and their authentic selves, as well as loving themselves and their culture is highly emphasized.
Dinner is provided.
Parent groups are in Spanish and run for 12 weeks and have the purpose of building a strong sense of community that nourishes healing and learning, while simultaneously strengthening our families. Parents will be provided a safe-space to share difficulties while learning ways to improve family communication and relationships that strengthen family cohesion.
Dinner is provided.