by Dave Smith
21st Space Wing Public Affairs staff writer
8/19/2015 - PETERSON AIR FORCE BASE, Colo. -- Parenting,
under the best circumstances is a tough job. Raising a family while
serving in the military presents its own challenges. To help families
meet and overcome those challenges a new prevention program, Family
Check-Up, is offered through the Family Advocacy Outreach Program.
The Family Check-Up is an evidence-based family support program
motivating parents to engage in parenting practices supporting child and
adolescent competence and mental health. The program also helps reduce
risks for substance use.
Dr. Martina Porter, Family Advocacy Program manager, said positive
behavioral support and reinforcement are offered through the program.
The exact direction and what is addressed is different for each family. A
series of three assessment meetings take place in the family's home to
determine needs and what exactly the family wants to work on, Porter
"It is important in parenting practices that the parent chooses what
they want to work on," she added. "Research shows that's more
successful. We provide guidance and it's up to the family to follow
Following the assessment meetings families can choose to move on to the
Every Day Parenting Program, an individualized, in-home family therapy.
During those sessions the family works on things like parenting
techniques, positive behaviors, and helping to set healthy limits. It is
designed to build parenting skills and reduce existing problems. This
portion involves an additional three to 15 direct contact hours.
"It's based on their practical needs. It's very interactive," Porter said.
Any family with a child between the ages of three and 17 is eligible to
participate. The FCU is designed to promote mission readiness by
strengthening parenting skills and enhancing family resilience.
Over the last two decades the findings of several studies link the FCU
to early childhood outcomes such as reductions in child problem
behavior, emotional distress, decrease in maternal depression, and
increases in positive parenting. During adolescence the program shows a
reduction in problem behavior, long-term arrest rates, and substance use
over time. It also increases parental monitoring, student achievement,
and school engagement.
For further information or to schedule a family check-up contact the Peterson Family Advocacy Program at 556-7023.