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City commemorates five years of ‘strengthening families’<p>The City of Cape Town’s Social Development and Early Childhood Development Department has guided participating families through the internationally recognised Strengthening Families programme.</p><p>The preventative programme includes working with both child and parent to recognise the value of familial relationships.</p><p>The programme was first piloted in Cape Town in April 2013 when 63 families from Scottsdene, Elsies River, Manenberg, Lavender Hill and Bonteheuwel attended the course. The number of participating families had grown to 1 076 by the end of June 2018.</p><p>The eight-week course comprises 10 sessions and uses practical and interactive methods to broach topics like love and limits, house rules, encouraging good behaviour and consequences. It also teaches children how to have goals and dreams, how to appreciate their parents, how to deal with stress, how to resist peer pressure and to associate themselves with good friends. </p><p>For parents, the programme aims to assist them in understanding their children better and thus help prevent their children from falling into anti-social behaviour and activities. Another layer that has been added in the City’s execution of the programme is to secure temporary work opportunities for some of the parents through the Expanded Public Works Programme.</p><p>‘The Strengthening Families programme is one of the City’s many social crime and substance abuse interventions. Very often problems at home are blamed for social ills such as substance abuse, gang involvement, truancy and other negative behaviours, so this programme starts at the root. It aims to improve relationships and the overall climate in the home environment and build resilience in young people so that they are able to make good life choices,’ said the City’s Mayoral Committee Member for Safety and Security; and Social Services, Alderman JP Smith.</p><p>The before and after assessments of the Strengthening Families programme comprises 54 questions. These questions are grouped into 4 themes, namely: </p><ul><li><div style="text-align:left;">My child and I</div></li><li><div style="text-align:left;">Disciplining tactics</div></li><li><div style="text-align:left;">Child's behaviour</div></li><li><div style="text-align:left;">Child's behaviour toward others </div></li></ul><p>The evaluations reflect notable improvements in positive responses around behavioural change in both parents and children, as well as improved communication skills and quality time spent together.</p><p>‘There is no guarantee that a happy home protects children from falling into anti-social behavior, but I believe that it helps and that’s why we will forge ahead with the Strengthening Families programme to help instill positive behaviour early on. A child who is guided along the right path and who receives care and attention at home is less likely to become a problematic adult,’ added Alderman Smith.</p><p><br><strong>End</strong></p>2018-09-20T22:00:00ZGP0|#1d539e44-7c8c-4646-887d-386dc1d95d70;L0|#01d539e44-7c8c-4646-887d-386dc1d95d70|City news;GTSet|#62efe227-07aa-45e7-944c-ceebacca891dGP0|#1cd1eca6-7dca-4e2f-a790-46174375675e;L0|#01cd1eca6-7dca-4e2f-a790-46174375675e|strengthening families programme;GTSet|#2e3de6c1-9951-4747-8f53-470629a399bb;GP0|#2a129773-a46b-4460-9906-88a861c10b2a;L0|#02a129773-a46b-4460-9906-88a861c10b2a|communication;GP0|#6f3140d5-0d8d-4990-b076-310b97c3268c;L0|#06f3140d5-0d8d-4990-b076-310b97c3268c|training1

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