Toronto Metropolitan University
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What Participants Value: Practices and Outcomes at Family Resource Programs (English)

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posted on 2023-01-17, 15:29 authored by Susan Silver, Rachel BermanRachel Berman, Sue Wilson, M. Carmen Carrero de Salazar, Leslie Wilson

[Introduction]: " Family Resource Programs (FRPs) offer a model of early childhood learning and care embedded within environments that offer multiple services that are universally accessible and responsive to the needs and aspirations of families. The services provided by FRPs, are aimed at engaging families in pursuing states of well-being for themselves and their children. In contrast to the traditional service delivery approach, FRPs embrace empowerment practices where service providers see themselves as catalysts or facilitators rather than as experts, and clients are seen as participants rather than as recipients. As such, in a family resource environment, there is a non-hierarchical and participatory approach to family support. FRPs have deep roots in the community and are an integral resource for building networks of support for participants and their families. There are over 2,000 FRPs across Canada, reaching tens of thousands of families. 

The everyday experiences of participating in FRPs reveal multiple levels of engagement, leading to outcomes of value and significance. We have tried to capture these experiences through the interview process, and in this way sought to understand the essence of Family Resource Programs. The research process has provided us with an appreciation of the far-reaching outcomes of this inclusive, community-based model of services for children and families. We hope that we have conveyed these experiences in the portraits presented in the companion volume A Place to Go. This volume presents an evaluation tool, and a theoretical overview of the practice themes on which the tool is based. The tool consists of 35 indicators organized thematically and identified through the analysis of interviews with participants of FRPs across Canada."




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