Military Family Foundations: Adapting an Evidence-based Family Prevention Program

Prevention Research Center image

Funder: NIH
Start Date: 2013

To enhance the well-being and resilience of Reserve and National Guard families, we propose to adapt a civilian evidence-based, family-strengthening program, Family Foundations (FF), and assess the feasibility of implementing it with Reserve and Guard families.

The program’s focus on the transition to parenthood period—and its documented effects with civilian families through at least child age 3 years—is well-suited to addressing the needs of Reserve and Guard families with young children. FF is an evidence-based program well-suited to promoting military family resilience. At the core of FF is recognition of the crucial role of positive coparenting support for facilitating the emotional, mental, and behavioral health of parents and children. Positive coparenting cooperation and support may serve as a leverage point in enhancing the flexibility, capacity for family adaptation, and joint decision-making central to military family resilience.

Research indicates that positive coparenting promotes parental self-efficacy, reduces parental stress and depression, and positively influences parenting quality. The program’s focus on coparenting skills is supplemented by promotion of parent stress management, self-regulation, and behavioral control. These capacities enable parents to manage frustrations with reduced emotional reactivity, resulting in increased problem-solving and positive communication.

Full Project Summary (PDF)

Investigator

Mark Feinberg, Ph.D.

Bennett Pierce Prevention Research Center (PI)