August 20, 2010 Newsletter

Healthy Relationship News – August 2010

Two reports came to my attention this month, both focusing on improving youth outcomes through relationship skill building.

The first, Ten Ways to Promote Educational Achievement Beyond the Classroom, from Child Trends identifies 10 actionable, feasible goals that would make a huge difference in outcomes for young people.  Three of the ten relate to areas that relationship skills programs for teens and their parents can have a positive impact. They are:

  1. Reducing unplanned pregnancy
  2. Improving parenting practices and family functioning
  3. Developing positive social skills in youth.

In the second, researchers from the University of Colorado, School of Medicine working with The Kempe Center reported in the August issue of Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine that mental health outcomes for foster children (9-11 years old) improved when mentoring and group skill-building interventions were incorporated into their programs. The skill building component included emotion recognition, problem solving, anger management, healthy relationships, peer pressure and abuse prevention. Again, subjects that are covered by building social and emotional intelligence.

While we must continue to work with young people in all the ways we currently do (academics, health, mentoring, etc), we must also pay attention to their social, emotional, and interpersonal lives.  For teens and young adults, this means helping them build healthy romantic relationships. One unhealthy romantic relationship and the rest of our good work could with youth could well go down the drain.

Thanks for promoting youth success by being part of the Dibble relationship education team!

With all good wishes,

Kay Reed

Kay Reed

Executive Director

Love NotesFree Love Notes posters help with recruitment

Thanks to Building Healthy Marriages project of United Way of Weld County, Greeley, CO we are making free Love Notes promotional posters and flyers (in both English and Spanish) available for your use. Customize these attractive resources to help fill your classes!

New funding opportunities

The Administration for Children and Families (ACF) at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Service (HHS) have announced two new funding opportunities – the Personal Responsibility Education Program (PREP) and Abstinence Education Grants.

The PREP funding will provide grants to states for programs that prevent teen pregnancy and sexually transmitted infections (STIs).  States are required to incorporate elements of programs that are evidence-based (such as Tier 1 programs or other programs with evidence of success), and must also add three “pre-adulthood education” components, such as financial literacy, parent-child communication, healthy relationships education, and more.  States will receive no less than $250,000.

The abstinence funding will provide grants to states for abstinence education programs and mentoring, counseling, or adult supervision programs to promote abstinence.  States are encouraged to consider research-based programs and strategies when developing their plans, and to focus on populations of youth where the need is greatest, such as young teens in foster care. States will be able to determine the relative emphasis to place on each point of the A-H definition of abstinence, but funds cannot be used to contradict any of the A-H provisions.
Monies have been set aside for each state to implement both approaches. It is suggested that if you don’t know who the authorized state department is for your state that you call your governors’ offices to find out.

(Excerpted from The National Campaign to Prevent Teen and Unplanned Pregnancies)

In the next few months a handful of states will receive Safe and Supportive Schools Pilot Grants through the Department of Education. We mention it here because of its notable focus on building healthy relationships (ie. adult to student, student to student, parent to school) as well as social and emotional development of and supports for students.
When those grants are awarded, we will let you know which states received the funding. It will be an opportunity for those of you in the selected states to introduce relationship skills programming into your secondary schools to meet the grant’s goals.

News from the Field

Healthy Marriage Matters spread word on healthy relationships

Helping youngsters make healthy and responsible life decisions is the goal of the Healthy Marriage Matters Project. Project director Linda M. Jones said it offers a high school “relationship skills” curriculum tailored to developing positive relationship and a media campaign on the benefits of marriage to children and the community.

(Editor’s Note: Healthy Marriage Matters uses several Dibble curricula in their good work!)

All-in-One Marriage Prep“All-in-One Marriage Prep” Supports Dibble Mission

Wonderful wisdom for young people of marrying age.

Many marriage experts (Gary Chapman, John Van Epp, Susan Heitler, etc) are featured in a new book, All-in-One Marriage Prep: 75 Experts Share Tips and Wisdom to Help You Get Ready Now.

A big thanks to Susanne Alexander who is donating a portion of the profits from this book to The Dibble Institute. Thank you, Susanne, for supporting our mission!

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