Families Thrive

Photo by Chloe Hotaling

Photo by Chloe Hotaling

families Thrive™ is a four-day intensive training for adults in all settings who work with parents and their children. families thrive addresses the entire life cycle of families, from their children's infancy through young adulthood.

Groups are usually mixed, and include professionals from many different public and private youth-serving organizations. Sometimes, however, TRAININGS are customized for staff from a single  organization.

families thrive background

Families Thrive is a generation 2.0 training that merges Youth Thrive with Strengthening Families, a model that many state child welfare systems use to support parents and their children. Both Youth Thrive and Strengthening Families were originally developed by the Center for the Study of Social Policy. As with Youth Thrive, Families Thrive can adapted and customized to different audiences and incorporates new research findings over time.

Overarching Goal

Based in strengths-based and positive psychology perspectives, Families Thrive gives educators, social workers, policymakers, law enforcement personnel, and direct-service workers in any setting the concrete knowledge they need to understand young people and promote their long-term well-being.

Critical Premises

Families Thrive is based on five premises that reflect what adults need to do, but even more importantly, how they need to do it. Adults in Families Thrive will:

  • Understand current research on neuroscience and adolescent development, and its implications for working with young people
  • Understand the impact of traumatic stress on young people and which relationship skills will reduce that impact
  • Recognize relationships as a primary source of growth and learning for young people
  • Provide services that draw on the strengths of the young person's culture
  • Assess and modify your own beliefs and practices, and take care of yourself when the going gets hard


families thrive training-of-trainers

Interested in learning to train Families Thrive? The ToT is a rigorous five-day (35 hours) curriculum that includes  the standard training and provides real-time teach-back opportunities with coaching.  Graduates are authorized instructors of both Youth Thrive and Families Thrive. 

To participate in a Youth Thrive ToT, you should have:

  • Been trained in adult learning principles
  • Have experience training adults
  • Be able to participate in the full ToT, including the fifth day "teachback" session
  • The ability to teach Families Thrive to at least 50 people in the two years post-training
  • The willingness and ability to gather and submit data on all Families Thrive trainings you conduct
  • Willingness to actively participate in the Youth in Focus Thrive Community of Practice





Families Thrive Training-of-Trainers, Nebraska, 2017.

Families Thrive Training-of-Trainers, Nebraska, 2017.