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Strengthening Families Program continues to see success

Hopeful Horizons is proud to showcase its Strengthening Families Program (SFP) – a nationally recognized, evidence-based 14-week program for families!

Here are two stories from families who recently graduated from SFP:


SFP Helps Overcome Covid Challenges

Over the years, I’ve always heard positive things about SFP but never had the time to participate. When COVID-19 quarantine was put in place, it uprooted us from our so-called normal lives to an unfamiliar place. I received an email about signing up to participate in the SFP and I hesitated but signed up anyway. I was struggling with so many parenting issues that I thought I was equipped to handle but parenting under quarantine was something new.

After only the first session, my son and I felt so connected and looked forward to the next session. The SFP has taught us how important we are, how to respect each other, how important our voices are to each other, how to listen to each other, how to truly have family time and so much more.

SFP was just what we needed to ease the stress of the changes we were forced to make because of COVID-19. The hardest part of SFP was Graduation Day and saying goodbye to those who poured their time, their wisdom, their struggles, their failures and successes and, most of all, their smiles into my son and I.

My son enjoys the family meetings we now have weekly and having the privilege of being the head host of most of our meetings. We are so thankful for the opportunity to participate in such an amazing program that not only brought strength to our family but set us up to become a successful family.


My Son and I

Widowed Dad Strengthens Bond with Children Through SFP

As a newly single dad, I was so scared of how to parent my two boys. My wife was the one that held everything together. I always appreciated her, but I didn't know how much she did. I was the "Sunday Fun Guy" and didn't have to worry about schoolwork getting done or doctor’s visits. So, trying to set rules for my kids to follow while we are at my parents’ home was a mountain load of tasks that I thought I couldn't possibly do.

After their mom passed away, buying things and going to the trampoline park was the best I could do as a dad. I knew I couldn't be their friend and had to start being a real parent, but I just didn't know how and was scared to start. And I had no one to show me. I asked my fellow dad friends, Facebook groups, and Googled all kinds of things. But none of those gave me steps to follow, let alone an easy to-do exercise every week.

SFP broke down step by step what I needed to do, and how to explain to my kids how to behave. Since the program, my son has been considerably more open in his communication with me. Before SFP he would come home mad and not talk to me about it. He would just let his anger build. He misses his mom terribly. Before SFP he couldn't really talk about his mom passing. But now, at night before bed, he is up talking about her and his feelings for about five minutes. And it's gradually increasing. Only my oldest did SFP but the younger one quickly followed in his footsteps. It's cute to see the program was powerful enough to transition to my son's little shadow.

With positive reinforcements, we now have better communication between myself and my kids. They are better at communicating their feelings to me. Dinner time is no longer a struggle to get them to eat. We are eating vegetables now! Like real vegetables!

One of my sons has had a boost in his self-confidence. He now knows he can obtain long-term goals, if he sticks with it. My younger son is no longer having accidents during the day, and we're working on nighttime accidents now as well.

But my favorite part... All the moms in the group. To see people struggling in the same exact way I was. And it was interesting when a fellow SFP parent was describing a problem and I would instantly know how they should fix it based on the material supplied because their problem was so simple. And every time it would hit. Duh, dummy, take your own advice! The problem they were describing was always one of the problems I was facing that week as well. But I was overcomplicating my problems. And every time my answers were right there. Sometimes Mrs. Kelly would just have to help me break it down.

Thanks again SFP! You really saved us.


The Strengthening Families program and staff were so grateful to work with these two wonderful families and loved seeing the progress they made each week throughout the program! They were both dedicated and committed to each session during the 14 weeks and learned skills that will last them a lifetime!

What you should expect with SFP:

SFP is a 14-week evidence-based family skills training program. The parents and children (ages 6-11) attend once a week to learn how to improve their parenting skills and develop youth life skills. Parents and children learn separately the first hour of each weekly meeting. Then, parents and children come together for a joint family practice session.

For more information, contact Krista Goetz, Strengthening Families Program Coordinator or through our Support Line at 843-770-1070.


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