Wellspring Center for Prevention loves working with parents and caregivers to make a difference in the lives of their children.  We offer unique, highly-tailored programs that meet the distinct needs of parents and caregivers.  Our programs are staffed by family advocates and youth advocates who can help parents and caregivers learn how to help their children navigate today’s world, help children learn skills and ways to cope, and find understanding and support.

Active Programs and Information

STEP (Systematic Training for Effective Parenting) is a multicomponent parenting education curriculum. The STEP program helps parents learn effective ways to relate to their children from birth through adolescence by using parent education study groups.

By identifying the purposes of children’s behavior, STEP also helps parents learn how to encourage cooperative behavior in their children and how not to reinforce unacceptable behaviors.

STEP also helps parents change dysfunctional and destructive relationships with their children by offering concrete alternatives to abusive and ineffective methods of discipline and control.
The goals of STEP (Systematic Training for Effective Parenting) are:

  • Increased ability to identify goals of misbehavior
  • Increased alternatives to misbehaviors
  • Increased encouragement skills
  • Increased skill in communication
  • Increased skill in cooperation (parental and child)
  • Increased skill in discipline
  • Increased skill in choosing parenting approach
  • Increase child self-esteem and confidence
  • Decreased inappropriate parental behaviors in disciplining children and teens

Although STEP was designed for use with parents facing typical parenting challenges, all the studies indicate the program works well for families with an abusive parent, families at risk for parenting problems and child maltreatment, or families with a child receiving mental health treatment.

STEP is presented in a group format, with optimal group sizes ranging from 6 to 14 parents. The program is typically taught in seven weekly, 1.5-hour study groups facilitated by a counselor, social worker, or individual who has participated in a STEP workshop.

STEP features a leader who teaches lessons to parents on how to understand child behavior and misbehavior, practice positive listening, give encouragement (rather than praise), explore alternative parenting behaviors and express ideas and feelings, develop their child’s responsibilities, apply natural and logical consequences, convene family meetings, and develop their child’s confidence.

Parents engage in role-plays, exercises, discussions of hypothetical parenting situations, and the sharing of personal experiences. Videos demonstrate the concepts covered each week with examples of ineffective and effective parent-child interactions.

Description of Program
The Chronic Disease Self-Management Program is a workshop, given two and a half hours, once a week for six weeks, in community settings.

People of all ages with different chronic health problems or caregivers of someone with a chronic health problem attend together to learn skills needed for the daily management of disease and to maintain and/or increase life’s activities. Workshops are facilitated by two trained leaders, at least one of whom is a non-health professional with a chronic disease.

This program will not conflict with existing programs or treatments. It is designed to enhance regular treatment and disease-specific education such as cardiac rehabilitation, or diabetes instruction. The program is appropriate for people have one or multiple chronic conditions. Classes are fun, practical and highly participative, where support and success build the participants’ confidence in their ability to manage their health and maintain active fulfilling lives.

Subjects covered include:

  1. Techniques to deal with problems such as frustration, fatigue, pain and isolation
  2. Appropriate exercise for maintaining and improving strength, flexibility, and endurance
  3. Appropriate use of medication, communicating effectively with family, friends, and health professionals
  4. Nutrition
  5. How to evaluate new treatments.

Each participant in the workshop receives a copy of the companion book, Living Healthy Life With Chronic Conditions.

Research confirms participants increase healthful behaviors, believe their health has improved, are less limited in their daily activities, are less bothered by their illness, and have greater confidence in their ability to manage their condition.

Participants report the following benefits:
• Improvements in physical activity, stamina and pain control
• Better communication with their health care providers
• Reduced doctor and hospital visits