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FAMILY RESOURCE CENTERS

Generally located in home-like settings, family resource centers serve as informal meeting places for regularly scheduled classes, groups, and social activities … such as parenting classes, child care, short-term counseling, recreational activities, prenatal education, and adult education classes. Children’s Defense Fund, 1992


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Different Kinds of Family Centers

FOCUS

Early childhood/

parenting

Teens/youth

Integrated services

Community recreation

LOCATION

School-based

Community-based

(but school-linked)


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Family Center Outcomes (examples)

  • relationships: family, friends

  • parenting skills

  • available school, neighborhood and community activities

  • quality child care

  • social, emotional, informational resources

  • basic resources: food, shelter, transportation, health & dental care

  • affordable housing

  • adult literacy and basic skills


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Family Center Outcomes: Systems Improvement

  • Access to programs, services, activities

  • Availability of programs, services, activities

  • Volunteerism

  • Public awareness

  • Community involvement

  • Family choice, satisfaction with center programs

  • No stigma


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GOVERNANCE

Advisory board

Community representation

Leadership

Capable staff

Connection with local commission on children & families

Market-driven services, programs, and activities

Adequate resources

Access to training, technical assistance

ESSENTIAL COMPONENTS


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COLLABORATION

Shared mission and vision

Action plan

Negotiated partner agreements

Articulated self-interests

Delegated authority for decisions

Communication and conflict plans

ESSENTIAL COMPONENTS


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FAMILY SUPPORT

Home-like environment

Trusting relationships

Cultural sensitivity

Participants and contributors (not “clients”)

ESSENTIAL COMPONENTS


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Examples of Family Center activities in Oregon

  • Health checkups

  • Dental care

  • Gleaners

  • Head Start

  • Home school moms

  • Information and referral

  • Baby lap sits

  • Healthy Start


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Examples of Family Center activities in Oregon

  • Computers

  • Drop-in child care

  • Play groups

  • Hispanic family groups

  • Summer recreation programs

  • Baby brag days


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Examples of Family Center activities in Oregon

  • Arts and crafts

  • Soup kitchen

  • Emergency food and clothing

  • Dropping by for coffee

  • Project Safe Place

  • State and county agencies (AFS, SCF, health, mental health, juvenile)