Small Steps

How family bonding helps youth thrive

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Family Fun in Field
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Happy Family Portrait
Family Kayaking
Family in Nature

Strong family attachment and meaningful connection with adults are proven to reduce risk for youth.  Many families already incorporate several recommended strategies into daily life.  Find your favorites below and read on for new ideas to bolster your family's strengths.

   

Great places for building bonds
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1.

Spend time together.  Activities don't have to be elaborate or expensive.  Just spending time together teaches kids that they are loved and valuable.

2.

Listen.  Parents often strive to fix problems for their kids, when really kids just need to feel heard.  Keep family dynamics healthy by striving to listen more than you speak.

Listening well takes practice.
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3.

Model the behavior you want to see in your child.  Whether it's language, health, faith, hard work or dependence on alcohol, kids model what they see in the home.

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We can't all be models.  Or can we?

4.

Be clear about your values.  Talk often about the things that are important to you.  No lectures, just casual comments and your kids will soon be coming to you to discuss tough topics. 

Discuss youth behavior in terms of  body and brain health.
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  • Discuss behaviors you value plainly.

  • Be clear about consequences.

  • Refain from lectures. Casual comments encourage more dialogue.

  • Consider a Family Contract. 

5.

Find a positive parenting community that supports your healthy communication efforts.

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Building Community around our most important work:  parenting.

Book an Appointment with our staff or visit our Programs Page for  opportunities to connect with other parents

Looking for more? Learn more about programs to support local youth and families or
schedule a 1:1 discussion with CTC staff. 

Many factors can protect youth from risks such as mental health concerns, substance misuse or violence. By focusing our energy on areas that have the most impact, parents, caregivers, faith leaders and employers can set our youth and our community up for success.
To learn more about programs that build resilience and prevent youth risk behavior, check out our program page.