Community Programming


SAFETY as a mindset Act with INTEGRITY Listen and respond with EMPATHY IMPACT drives lasting change



The United Methodist Home for Children (UMHC) sponsors the Strengthening Families Program for parents with children aged 10 to 14 years. This affordable family-friendly prevention program is open to the public and designed to help parents improve their parenting skills, build life skills in pre-adolescents who are transitioning from elementary to middle school and strengthen family bonds and relationships. Guidance counselors also refer to parents when they see problems beginning at school.

This program provides the tools, language, and safe environment families need to rebuild positive relationships.

Participants meet one evening each week for seven weeks, beginning with a group meal. Facilitators meet separately with parents and youth to work on specific topics ranging from coping skills to goal setting, conflict resolution, empathy, understanding developmental changes, avoiding substance abuse, and ways to show love and support. Then, participants reconnect, talk about the new skills they learned, and practice decision-making and joint problem-solving skills through role-playing.

Strengthening Families is designed for families who want to improve parent-child communications, or who may need help addressing anger and strong emotions or building skills that help young people resist peer pressure before permanent harm is done. As problematic behaviors like school truancy, substance abuse, and juvenile crime escalate, the Strengthening Families Program provides the tools, language and safe environment families need to restore trust and build positive relationships.

For more information on SFP or dates and times of the next class, call UMHC at 717-766-7652 extension 250 or email