This August 26-27 CCMA founders Dr. Charlene Berquist and Heather Blades will provide virtual training in facilitating Family Group Conferences (FGCs) for the Office of Dispute Resolution and Family Court Programs in the 7th Judicial Circuit. The training, offered through the Center for Dispute Resolution at Missouri State University, will explore how FGCs can be used by schools, social service agencies, and others to benefit youth and families. The training will prepare participants to facilitate FGCs for families referred by the Clay County Family Court.
What Are Family Group Conferences (FGCs)
FGCs are family-led meetings in which family, friends, and other supportive people in the lives of a family or youth come together to make a plan to address difficulties or challenges faced by the family or youth. The FGC is supported by an independent facilitator, who helps the family prepare for the FGC and guides the conference. In an FGC, families are empowered to express needs, verbalize concerns, identify resources, and create their own robust plans to support the family or youth in managing challenges, which may include truancy, behavioral issues, academic concerns, parent engagement, etc. Outside agencies (such as the school system, juvenile office, etc.) may provide information on things that the family should address in their plan, but the family decides the best way to support the family or youth in achieving their goals.
About the FREE Training
This training is free for participants who are interested in co-facilitating FGCs for families referred by the Clay County Family Court. For more information on Clay County’s FGC program and facilitation compensation, please email firstname.lastname@example.org. To register for this training visit https://bit.ly/36FNIpa.
This training will cover the following:
CCMA's Founders and Family Group Conferencing
Family Group Conferencing is a flexible process that can be used in a variety of contexts, and Dr. Berquist and Ms. Blades have a long history of providing FGC services and training.
In the Regional Partnership Grant (RPG) program, the Berquist and Blades trained and coordinated volunteer facilitators who provided FGC services for parents receiving substance abuse treatment through Alternative Opportunities, Inc.. In these FGCs, families developed plans to support the parent(s) in recovery and ensure the safety and well-being of the children involved.
As part of a Title II grant, the CDR (led by Berquist and Blades) prepared and supported volunteer facilitators who provided FGCs for at-risk girls and young women referred by the Greene County Juvenile Office. In these FGCs, families focused on developing plans to address each youth’s behavior or difficulties (including juvenile offending, status offenses, truancy, relationship issues, etc.). The FGCs also addressed concerns identified by the Juvenile Office, school, family, and youth.
In addition to providing Family Group Conferencing as a part of its community programming, Berquist and Blades have an extensive history of offering customized training in facilitating FGCs for child welfare organizations, community groups, and others. Past training clients have included Great Circle, the Omaha Tribe Peacemaker Project, the Healthy Families Taskforce, and the Office of Dispute Resolution and Family Court Programs in the 7th Judicial Circuit.
For more information on training in Family Group Conferencing check out this webpage or email training@CCM-Associates.com.
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