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The Streghthening Families Program is an initiative targeting parents and adolescents that has proven to reduce the probability of psychotropic substance abuse and other risk behaviors associated with adolescents, including those related to HIV/AIDS and sexual and reproductive health.

Adapted from the original Iowa Strengthening Families Program (ISFP), developed by the Iowa State University, it was adapted by the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) and its authors to the social and cultural reality of the Region of the Americas

The Streghthenin Families Program is designed to:

  • Help parents or guardians acquire parenting skills that support young people's development
  • Teach parents or guardians effective ways of disciplining and guiding their children.
  • Provide young people with healthy guidelines for the future and heighten their appreciation of the parents' or guardians' efforts.
  • Give young people the skills to handle stress and peer pressure

    This program consists of seven sessions designed to reduce risk factors connected with the family and involves developing protective strategies for both young people and their parents or guardians. In each session, parallel activities are carried out with parents or guardians and young people, concluding with common activities for the entire family over the course of seven weeks. The program includes teaching manuals, videos that illustrate the different topics, and models for individual and group practicums.

    The sessions are divided thematically, as follows:

      1. Using love and limits
      2. Setting down the rules of the household
      3. Promoting good behavior
      4. The use of consequences
      5. Building bridges
      6. Protection against substance abuse
      7. Assistance for the special needs of the family


  • Last Updated on Tuesday, 27 July 2010 06:44

    Regional Office for the Americas of the World Health Organization
    525 Twenty-third Street, N.W., Washington, D.C. 20037, United States of America
    Tel.: +1 (202) 974-3000 Fax: +1 (202) 974-3663

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