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Spring/Summer 2014



Strengthening Families Georgia (SFG)


Fourth Annual SFG Training of Trainers 

Mercer University - McDonough Campus

July 10-11, 2014


Join over 100 already trained SFG trainers to help more professionals understand how to Strengthen Families!


The 4th Annual Strengthening Families Georgia Training of Trainers (SFG TOT) will be offered July 10-11, 2014 at the Mercer University Regional Academic Center in McDonough. Applications are due June 20th


Upon successful completion of this 10-hour TOT trainers will be approved to provide 2-hour SFG trainings on all Five Protective Factors and the SFG Overview (6 trainings total). Commitments required. Click here for application. 


Eligibility requirements: 


1. Agency/Organization Training Staff or DECAL Approved Trainer


2. Minimum 2 years' experience as a trainer


3. Minimum Bachelor Degree


4. Previous experience with Family or Child Care Services 


From the Toolbox - 

Resources You Can Use 


Administration for Children and Families'

Birth to 5: Watch Me Thrive!  


Birth to 5: Watch Me Thrive! is a coordinated federal effort to encourage healthy child development, universal developmental and behavioral screening for children, and support for the families and providers who care for them. 


Information found on this website will help families and providers:

  • Celebrate milestones. Every family looks forward to seeing a child's first smile, first step, and first words. Regular screenings help raise awareness of a child's development, making it easier to expect and celebrate developmental milestones.
  • Promote universal screening. Just like hearing and vision screenings assure that children can hear and see clearly, developmental and behavioral screenings track a child's progress in areas such as language, social, or motor development.
  • Identify possible delays and concerns early. With regular screenings, families, teachers, and other professionals can assure that young children get the services and supports they need, as early as possible to help them thrive alongside their peers.
  • Enhance developmental supports. Combining the love and knowledge families have of their children with tools, guidance, and tips recommended by experts can make the most of the developmental support children receive.
The website includes tailored guides for select audiences for use with the Compendium of Screening Measures for Young Children that addresses the importance of developmental and behavioral screening, how to talk to parents, where to go for help, and how to select the most appropriate screening tool for the population served as well as the provider implementing the screening. 


The Raising of America

Early Childhood and the Future of Our Nation


This documentary series and multimedia initiative explores how a strong start for all our kids leads not only to better individual life courses (learning, earning and physical and mental health) but also to a healthier, safer, better educated, more prosperous, and more equitable America.


The Raising of America project includes:

  • a one-hour documentary for PBS broadcast with five 30 minute supporting episodes
  • a companion website and resource center
  • a nationwide Public Engagement Campaign

The DVD series and official companion website will be released this Fall. PBS broadcast dates will be announced at a later date.



The Pathways Awareness Foundation

Early Childhood and the Future of Our Nation

Video and Handout on Communication Development During the First Year


The Pathways Awareness Foundation http://www.pathways.org/  has released a free video and handout that offer practical advice for family members on how to help their baby reach important speech and language milestones during the first year. 


The video Crying, Cooing, Communication: Baby's First Year is available online, as is a companion handout with additional information.


Both the video and accompanying handout are available at:



About Strengthening Families Georgia


The state lead for Strengthening Families Georgia (SFG) is the Governor's Office for Children and Families (GOCF). SFG is administered by the Georgia Association on Young Children (GAYC) and represents a partnership of national, state, local, and public/private organizations dedicated to embedding five research-based protective factors in service/supports for young children and their families.


Vision: All families with children birth through age five in Georgia have the resources and support necessary for a meaningful and successful life.


Mission: To utilize the Strengthening Families assets-based framework of Protective Factors in all systems, programs, services and activities supporting families with young children as the approach to achieving the vision. These five Protective Factors are the foundation for the Strengthening Families approach:

  1. Parental Resilience - Parents can bounce back
  2. Social Connections - Parents have friends
  3. Knowledge of Child Development - Parents know how children grow and learn
  4. Concrete Support in Time of Need - Parents know where to turn for help
  5. Social and Emotional Competence of Children Children learn to talk about and handle feelings

A large group of Strengthening Families Georgia stakeholders, organized into a SFG Leadership Team, Partnership, and Supporters includes over 70 representatives from more than 30 organizations. The Leadership Team, made up of 20-25 members, provides direction and guidance for embedding the five protective factors in all areas of related work via:

  • Policy and systems change
  • Data driven decision-making
  • Integration and prioritization of work
  • Identifying and leveraging resources
  • Coordination and collaboration with similar state efforts
Funding Information

This project was supported in part by the Governor's Office for Children and Families through the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Administration for Children and Families, Community Based Child Abuse Prevention and Treatment Act (CFDA 93.590). Points of view or opinions stated in this document are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily represent the official position or policies of the Governor's Office for Children and Families or the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Administration for Children and Families, Community Based Child Abuse Prevention and Treatment Act (CFDA 93.590).

For more information on Strengthening Families Georgia contact Jeanette Meyer, Strengthening Families Georgia Statewide Coordinator: strengtheningfamiliesga@gmail.com 
In This Issue
SFG Train the Trainer
Birth to Five: Watch Me Thrive!
Raising of America
Pathways Awareness Foundation
About SFG