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Since 1994, The Chapel Hill Training-Outreach Project has been committed to providing assistance to the residents of communities which are struggling with these and other issues of poverty, substance abuse, joblessness, and isolation.
Even the worst neighborhoods are populated by good people who just don’t know what to do. Intimidated by guns and violence, they lack the resources, the guidance and organization to take their neighborhoods back from the criminal activities, the sleepless nights and dangerous days.
Today, the Chapel Hill Training-Outreach Project is managing four Family Resource Centers in the Orange County area of North Carolina.
A Family Resource Center is a warm and welcoming place in the community where any family member can go, not only in times of need, but as a regular part of day-to-day life. Family Resource Centers offer parent education classes, child development activities, parent-to-parent support groups. Afterschool and academic enrichment, GED and literacy instruction, health information, referrals and many other programs, activities and services. These services are modified and added to, depending on the needs and desires of local families.
Family Resource Centers are unique in their approach to working with families: they build families' strengths and capacities, serve as a hub for the community, work for positive social change, and offer help without stigma. Parents act as resources in many capacities, from serving on a decision-making board, participating in Center programs, learning job skills to cooking for a potluck community dinner.
Chapel Hill Training Outreach Project, Inc. manages four Family Resource Centers in Orange County, North Carolina, serving five neighborhoods. The Centers are community-based and located in the midst of the neighborhoods they serve.
The Family Resource Center provides a comprehensive array of family support programs, services and activities.
The North Carolina Department of Health and Human Resources, Division of Social Services provide the main source of funding for the Orange County Family Resource Center program. The FRC's overarching goals, as defined by the state DSS, are to:
Family support is about investing in the promotion of the positive things that families want for their children. In the long term, family support is a societal investment in the creation of happy, healthy, productive citizens. This investment has an impact on the families who participate in services, and on society as a whole. Research shows that by investing in positive outcomes for children and families, family support programs also, over the long term can lead to:
Through these positive outcomes, family support allows us as a society to invest in the development of citizens rather than putting money into more prisons, foster homes, and public welfare. This investment has a tremendous effect on overall productivity as a society and on the ability of those receiving family support services to contribute to us as a nation. (Excerpted from a report by Family Support America, 2000).
Collaboration has been a key to the success of the Family Resource Center program and is recognized as a top priority in the continued growth and service of the Centers. Collaboration among numerous agencies, student organizations, town and city governments, school systems, departments of health and social services, civic and religious organizations provides on-site programs, services, and activities. Representation on local Advisory Boards, scholarships and financial assistance, volunteers, and in-kind donations such as educational materials, transportation, and Center space are also contributions that support FRC programs. Chapel Hill Training Outreach Project, Inc., in its capacity as a networking hub, is at the center of collaborations, coordinating efforts between the Centers and outside agencies while providing technical assistance, administrative support, and training to staff and Advisory Boards of the Centers.
Family Resource Centers (FRC's) can only succeed through true commitment and collaboration between families and organizations that work together. Family Resource Centers re-invent how services are delivered by bringing resources into the community to families, based on their identified desires and needs.
Family Resource Centers partner with other agencies and community groups in order to provide a broad range of programs, activities and services to meet the total needs of families. The school systems, departments of health and social services, the local police department, churches, and many other agencies and service organizations, in addition to volunteers are vital to the Centers' programs.
Because each FRC is located in the neighborhood that it serves, it provides a unique and vital role, not only within the neighborhood, but also for the community-wide human service provision network. Bringing services into the community not only eliminates tangible barriers to participation such as transportation, but also demonstrates a willingness to meet parents and families “half way”. The FRC program has become an essential partner in this process for many local agencies.
APPLES-UNC (student services learning program)
The North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services/Division of Social Services approved a grant award to the Chapel Hill Training-Outreach Project, Inc. for the implementation of the Strengthening Families Program, a 14-session skill-building program for families with children aged 6-11 years old. The goals of this nationally recognized program is to help reduce child maltreatment risks and to build strong families. The program is administered by the Orange County Family Resource Center project staff.
The Strengthening Families Program is free to all families residing in Orange County and interested in strengthening their families, learning communication and parenting skills and understanding the behaviors of their children. The program meets one evening a week for 2 ½ hours. Transportation, child care and dinner are provided. This 14-session training brings parents and their children together in learning environments that strengthens the entire family.
Major objectives of the Strengthening Families Program are to improve family relations, increase skills in parenting a child, improve children’s behavior, increase children’s social competencies and reduce or prevent alcohol and drug abuse.
The program offers parent training sessions that teaches parents how to increase positive behaviors in their children, children training sessions that focus on social and life skills such as peer resistance skills, stress and anger management and family training sessions that focus on practicing family communication skills, effective discipline and reinforcing positive behaviors.
To register for the Strengthening Families Program, or to make a referral, please contact Alesia Sanyika, Program Coordinator of the Orange County Family Resource Centers at (919) 641-0168. All families are required to participate in a short assessment session where they will learn more about the Strengthening Families Program. >>Back to Top
The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development approved the Resident Family Self-Sufficiency Services (ROSS) grant to the Chapel Hill Department of Housing. The ROSS grant has been contracted to Chapel Hill Training-Outreach Project, Inc. and will be administered by its Orange County Family Resource Center program.
The program will provide educational opportunities including job, life skills and technology training, financial counseling and other programs that would assist residents to become self-sufficient.
Selected residents will be required to attend meetings once per week and make a 30 month commitment to the program. Certificates of Achievement will be awarded during the graduation ceremony at the end of the program period. This program counts as community service hours for resident housing requirements.
The ROSS program will operate from the Airport Gardens Family Resource Center located at 821 Martin Luther King, Jr. Blvd. in Chapel Hill. >>Back to Top
According to Webster’s, “respite” means a period of temporary delay; an interval of rest or relief.
Beginning Saturday, September 15, 2007 the Orange County Family Resource Centers started sponsoring community-based respite care to parents needing a break.
Trained and experienced staffimg src= are available at the S. Estes FRC each Saturday from 1pm-5pm so that parents with children ages 5-11 can take time out for themselves.
For the children, a typical afternoon includes:
1:00pm - Blow up/hang colorful balloons from the ceiling, and make FUN name tags using markers, stickers.
1:30pm - Team building activity (Usually art work, i.e. color in diamonds to form a Rainbow Star-team effort)
2:30pm - Wash hands and make fun snacks (rice cakes, peanut butter, raisins, apples, bananas & juice!) Children have fun learning about nutritious snacks.
3:00pm - Outdoor team play (kick ball as a team, jump rope as a team)
3:45pm - Art projects (potato art/t-shirts, making flowers out of tissue paper, etc); Computer research (researching holidays on computer), Theater (acting out stories and creating a Thanksgiving play for the community). We devote an hour to any or all of these activities.
4:45pm - Release balloons from ceiling and draw smiley faces with markers; fun with balloons!
5:00pm - Time to go home and implement the FUN activities learned! Students are not divided into groups but play together so they can learn to accept each other at whatever level they're on and to help each other out. >>Back to Top
Family Resource Centers have proven to be effective in reaching "hard to reach" populations. Local control of planning and implementation builds trust, and facilitates the effective delivery of services that are available through local government agencies and other "helping" organizations. The FRC gives residents the opportunity to improve their neighborhoods making them safer and more nurturing for themselves, their children, and their families.
If you are interested in learning more about Family Resource Centers in the Orange County area of North Carolina, please contact
Building strong families, healthy children, and safe and supportive communities is the mission of the Orange County Family Resource Center program.
The North Carolina Department of Health and Human Resources, Division of Social Services provide the main source of funding for the Orange County Family Resource Center program. The overarching goal, as defined by the state DSS, is to ensure safety, permanency, well-being, and self-sufficiency for children and families.
Say hello to our newest location at Airport Gardens in Chapel Hill:
This new Family Resource Center joins three others in the area. Our Current Locations