Family Leadership Training Program

By: Jean Houston, FAST TRAC Lead Family Contact

One of the most rewarding endeavors I have undertaken as the FAST TRAC Lead Family Contact is the privilege of organizing and facilitating our Family Leadership Training program. This is an 8 month program for families who have children with mental health challenges to grow their knowledge of systems and confidence in advocating for their child and others, and to expand their support system. 

The 18 women who are participating in the program are enthusiastic, motivated, and bonded.  They have made a difference in the lives of their own families and want to support other families in their community, as well as, beyond.

The group has gone through many exercises to learn more about group dynamics, such as how communication between the “professionals” and “family voice” can be respectfully heard.  They have worked together to complete a task with a targeted result.  Many representatives from Clermont County agencies have visited and shared information about how their agency includes family voice.  The group also spent a full day increasing their knowledge of special education and has reached the level of comfort to share opposing opinions with one another. 

The upcoming session will include discussion about the program and how the families would suggest changing or modifying the program for the next group of family members.  The program will conclude in April 2012, followed by an appreciation celebration.  This group is vital to the planning of Clermont County’s first Family and Youth Conference, which will be held on May 5, 2012 at the Mount Carmel Christian Church. 

Please stay tuned for the next Family Leadership Series coming in Fal2012.