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Our mission is to strengthen the family unit.

To build strong families, we:

  • Help adults and children find their strengths and build on them

  • Provide relevant, research-based life skills information and activities through workshop series

  • Train facilitators and build partnerships

The Building Strong Families: Challenges and Choices program helps families find their strengths, build on those strengths, and learn skills to create stronger families, improve relationships, and increase communication. The program covers 13 topics and uses hands-on activities to involve participants.

Currently, 733 facilitators from Extension and various agencies (e.g., Community Action, Head Start, schools, social services) in Missouri, Arkansas, Nebraska, North Dakota, South Dakota, Louisiana, Utah, Illinois, Minnesota, New Hampshire and Alabama have completed certification training. To date 29,168 adults and 8,025 youth have participated in the program.

Building Strong Families is based on research showing family members can make significant changes in their behavior by focusing on strengths rather than on problems.

Building Strong Families covers: 

1. Family Strengths  8. Working
2. Communicating  9. Positive Discipline
3. Managing Stress 10. Money Matters
4. Child Self-Care 11. Setting Goals
5. Food and Fitness 12. Consumer Beware
6. Kids and Self-Esteem 13. Healthy Home
7. Balancing Responsibilities

Building Strong Families: 

  • Provides fast-paced interactive sessions 
  • Helps families learn from each other 
  • Makes learning fun

A team from University of Missouri Extension developed the Building Strong Families: Challenges and Choices program in 1997.


If you have any questions or need information, contact:

Kathy Dothage
Building Strong Families Program Coordinator
University of Missouri Extension
1205 University Avenue, Ste. 400
Columbia, MO 65211

Copyright 2017 Published by University of Missouri

Last updated: 05/16/2017
Copyright  ADA Equal Opportunity

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