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Family Services and Community Resources Case Study

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Updated: Jun 28th, 2021

As childcare professionals, it is often necessary to recommend services for your students and their families. A community resource provides a specific service to individuals and/or families that are in a time of need or that will enhance the quality of life. Community resources are affordable to all; typically being free or offering scholarships, financial assistance and/or have a sliding scale based on income. This assignment will give you the opportunity to explore the different resources available to support children and families in your community.

The required elements relate to:

Course SLO 1: Describe socialization of the child focusing on the interrelationship of family, school, and community

And are aligned with the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC) Professional Preparation Standards

  • 1b. Knowing and understanding the multiple influences on early development and learning
  • 2a. Knowing about and understanding diverse family and community characteristics
  • 2b. Supporting and engaging families and communities through respectful, reciprocal relationships

Assignment Directions

  • Select two families to learn about and plan for; one from a textbook case study and one from your personal acquaintances.
  • Please choose one of the case study families found in this link:
    • Choose a family you know and are comfortable interacting with. Have a conversation with them to learn about their family characteristics related to this assignment’s topics.
    • Research community resources and choose a different one for each family that would meet their needs.
  • Pretend you are the teacher for the two families chosen and based on what you know about the families, and your research on community resources, type your responses for each directly into the 4 charts below.

Chart 1 Responses for Case Study Family

  1. Name of the family: Michael’s Family
  1. Identify characteristics of the family and community and how these characteristics influenced the child and family (Key Element 2a).

Michael’s parents are homosexuals. Thus, Michael is being raised by two mothers. The parents are timid due to the fact that although the parents are uncomfortable with the way staff in the center perceive them, they do not say anything. There are various reasons why this might be the case. One, it might be hard for Michael’s parents to speak for fear of Michael being kicked out of the child care center. This might be challenging due to the fact that both parents work. Secondly, they might be avoiding the prejudice that is sometimes expressed to homosexuals. This characteristic is reflected in Michael’s behavior as well. He is always withdrawn and looks down a significant amount of time.
It can be argued that the family is also anti-social probably due to the way people react to the fact that they are homosexuals raising a child together. Regardless of the reason, it has affected Michael as he takes time to warm up to people.

  1. What did you identify as the family’s strengths? What are the stressors? Identify at least 5 stressors and/or strengths, in total. Explain why you think it is a strength or stressor (Key Element 2a).

One strength the family has is that they are tolerant. This comes from the fact that although they feel uncomfortable with Michael’s tutors, they are able to be friendly with them. This is a strength as it ensures the needs of Michael are met. Another strength is that both parents are actively involved with their child’s upbringing. One mon brings Michael to the center and the other picks him up after work. This arrangement is a strength as it affirms to Michael that both parents are available for him.
According to National Center on Parent, Family and Community Engagement “The Family Partnership Process”, stressors are events, people and activities that make people feel worried or anxious (12). One stressor is bias tutors. This is a stressor as they perceive the parents to be unfit to raise a child. A second stressor is Michael’s behavior. This is identified due to the fact that Michael’s behavior is negatively affected by the uncomfortable nature in the school. A third stressor is the tight schedule the parents have to deal with in order to ensure Michael’s needs are met. This is why one parent drops him off while another picks him up in the morning. This is a stressor as it reduces the time the parents spend with Michael together as a family.

  1. Using a strength-based perspective,what would you say to the family to help them see their strengths and to build a positive relationship between you and the family members. Please write this in complete sentences. (Key Element 2b)

Thank you for trusting us with the care of your son, Michael. You are strong parents and your personalities reflect on Michael. One thing we are trying to boost is his confidence and we believe that him seeing your confidence will help him get more comfortable around people. This statement will help the parents see that they have to come out as confident in order to positively influence Michael. Additionally, since it is positive, it enhances the trust between me and the parents.

  1. One question you would ask the family that is open-ended and will help the family to feel comfortable sharing with you? Include an explanation for why you’re asking and what you will do with the answers to the questions (Key Element 2b).

If you were given a chance to improve the culture of the child care center, what are the two things you would want to change?
This question is relevant as it will help identify some of the concerns Michael’s parents have about the center. The responses can be drafted into suggestions and passed on the center’s management for possible action.

Chart 2 Community Resources you selected for the case study family

Information needed Community Resource
Name of the facility Family Equality Council
Phone number 646.880.3005
Address Family Equality Council
475 Park Ave South, Suite 2100
New York, NY 10016
Hours of operation 8 AM – 5 PM
Service charges if any None
Restrictions- this may include age, income level, gender, specific to the area such as: only people who live in Mission Viejo. Only for LQBTQ families (parents and children)
Any other pertinent information None
Official philosophy and goals of the program. This is the only part that should be copied directly from the source. Family Equality’s mission is to advance legal and lived equality for LGBTQ families, and for those who wish to form them, through building community, changing hearts and minds, and driving policy change.
Specific services offered. Family support, family building and advocacy
Explain how the resource you chose will support this specific family. Include how the service provided can influence a child’s different ecological systems (Key element 1b).

Chart 3 Responses for real live family

1. Name of the family that you met with (please use a fictitious name to protect their privacy): The Smiths
2. Through a conversation, identify characteristics of the family and how these characteristics influence the child and family (Key Element 2a)
The Smiths are a mixed family made up of two step-children, a biological child, a father and a mother. The children are aged between 13 and 6 years. Due to this, they have a large external family. This characteristic has affected the children as they are open minded and tolerant of different ideas and cultures.
3. What did you identify as the family’s strengths? What are the stressors? Identify at least 5 stressors and/or strengths, in total. Explain why you think it is a strength or stressor (Key Element 2a).
One of the family’s strengths is that they are mixed. This is a strength as it allows all individuals in the family to understand and accept different opinions and cultures. Secondly, the family members are open minded and this is a strength as it unites them regardless of their differences. Thirdly, the family is adaptive and this is a strength as it exposes the family to different ways of doing things.
One of the stressors of the family is influence from external family. This is a stressor as some members of the external family feel differently about the family set-up. A second stressor is the management of time by the parents. The children’s schedule takes up most of their time.
4. After you have had a conversation with the family, what would you say to the family to help them see their strengths and to build a positive relationship between you and the family members? (NAEYC standard 2b)
Thank you for welcoming me into your home. You have a lovely family. You are exemplary in the way you bring everyone together and ensure that the needs of each child is met. Additionally, I must appreciate the fact that you are very open minded and tolerant as has been evident during our previous interactions.
5. One question you would ask the family that is open-ended and will help the family to feel comfortable sharing with you? Include an explanation for why you’re asking and what you will do with the answers to the questions (Key Element 2b)
What are some of the things the children need that you are struggling to provide easily?
This question will help the parents focus more on their children and not the external stressors. The answers will be used to draft positive actions that the family can take up to improve their quality of life.
6. Based on what you said to the family above, what was the family members’ response/reaction? Do you think your strength based conversation and questions asked would build a strong relationship? Reflect on this process and share what you learned from it.
The family agreed that they are struggling with spending time together as a family as the parents have different work schedules and the older children also have different school schedules compared to the youngest child. Indeed, I believe the strength-based conversation and the question will enhance trust and build a strong relationship between me and their family (National Center on Parent, Family and Community Engagement, “Building Partnership Series” 23).
Through the process, I have learned that family interaction should always strive to use the positive/strength based approaches to enhance impact.

Chart 4 Community Resources you selected for the real live family

Information needed Community Resource
Name of the facility National Step-family Resource Center
Phone number 407 995-1100
Address Auburn University, Alabama
Hours of operation 8AM to 5PM
Service charges if any $99 for family therapy sessions
Restrictions- this may include age, income level, gender, specific to area such as: only people who live in Mission Viejo. None
Any other pertinent information None
Official philosophy and goals of the program. This is the only part that should be copied directly from the source. The National Stepfamily Resource Center’s primary objective is serving as a clearinghouse of information, linking family science research on stepfamilies and best practices in work with couples and children in stepfamilies.
Specific services offered. Be specific, detailed and in your own words. Ask yourself, “Did I provide enough information to help someone understand what the organization provides?” Therapy, support groups,
Explain how the resource you chose will support this specific family. Include how the service provided can influence a child’s different ecological systems (Key element 1b).
The resource selected will offer the family therapy on how to deal with influences from external parties. Additionally, therapy sessions will help the parents stop feeling guilty over lacking enough time for all the children and give suggestions on how to ensure time spent together is of high quality. The services would ideally also shape the way the children view their parents and how to spend quality time with other people in any type of relationship they have.
Exceeds Expectations Meets Expectations Does not meet
Name of family 1 Name of family is listed and is from the textbook. Family is NOT from one of the case studies in the textbook. The rest of chart 1 will not be graded
Family 1
Characteristics
Key Element 2a
3
Characteristics of family are listed and related to the different ecological systems and it’s specific influences.
2
Characteristics of family are listed and examples are stated to show the influence of the characteristics.
1
Characteristics are listed of the family.
Family 1
Stress and Success
Key Element 2a
5
A total of 5 Stress and Successes are clearly defined and it is explained why each is seen as stress or success
4
A total of 5 Stress and Successes are listed, but does not include why they see each to be a stressor or success.
1
Less than 5 Stress and Successes are listed
Family 1 Strength Based perspective
Key Element 2b
4
Written in a dialogue format and showed the strengths of the family that would be validating.
3
Written format shows the focus of the strengths. The strengths are non-specific.
1
Strengths of the family are not accurate.
Family 1
Question asked
Key Element 2b
3
Respectful, non-judgmental and open-ended.
2
Question asked would be helpful for the teacher, but may feel invasive.
1
Question asked does not serve a purpose. Such as, for the teacher’s personal interest.
Com Resource 1
Name, phone, address, hours of operation,
1
All information included
0
Information missing
Com Resource 1
services charges
The community resources must be free, have a sliding scale or offer scholarships. If it does not, an automatic 5 point deducted will be made to your overall score.
Com Resource 1
Philosophy and Goals
1
Included accurate philosophy or goals.
0
Inaccurate or did not include
Com Resource 1
Specific Services offered
3
Services provided include details/description. Such as: Food banks- families may receive bags of food, specific to their family size, up to 3 times a month. Foods provided are shelf staples.
2
Lists services with basic info. Example: Food bank- food for families provided monthly.
1
Services provided are general. Example: food bank
Explanation of services and how it will help.

Key Element 1b

3
It is explained how the services will directly improve the family’s lives with possible outcomes.
2
It is explained how the services provided will help with general improvements.
1
It is not explained how the services will help.
Name of family 2 Family name listed Family name not listed
Family 2
Characteristics
Key Element 2a
3
Characteristics of the family are listed and related to the different ecological systems and it’s specific influences.
2
Characteristics of the family are listed and examples are stated to show the influence of the characteristics.
1
Characteristics are listed of the family.
Family 2
Stress and Success
Key Element 2a
5
A total of 5 Stress and Successes are clearly defined and it is explained why each is seen as stress or success
4
A total of 5 Stress and Successes are listed, but does not include why they see each to be a stressor or success.
1
Less than 5 Stress and Successes are listed
Family 2 Strength Based perspective
Key Element 2b
4
Written in a dialogue format and showed the strengths of the family that would be validating.
3
Written format shows the focus of the strengths. The strengths are non-specific.
1
Strengths of the family are not accurate.
Family 2
Question asked
Key Element 2b
3
Respectful, non-judgmental and open-ended.
2
Question asked would be helpful for the teacher, but may feel invasive.
1
Question asked does not serve a purpose. Such as, for the teacher’s personal interest.
Com Resource 2
Name, phone, address, hours of operation,
1
All information included
0
Information missing
Com Resource 2
services charges
The community resources must be free, have a sliding scale or offer scholarships. If it does not, an automatic 5 point deducted will be made to your overall score.
Com Resource 2
Philosophy and Goals
1
Included accurate philosophy or goals.
0
Inaccurate or did not include
Com Resource 2
Specific Services offered
3
Includes a description of the services.
2
List of services without a description
1
Not all services are listed.
Explanation of services and how it will help.
Key Element 1b
3
It is explained how the services will directly improve the family’s lives with possible outcomes.
2
It is explained how the services provided will help with general improvements.
1
It is not explained how the services will help.
Reflection on conversation 2
It is reflective and explains the outcome of the conversation- varying from building a bridge to creating a roadblock.
1
The response is vague and does not show what was learned from the families reaction.

Works Cited

National Center on Parent, Family and Community Engagement. The Family Partnership Process: Engaging and Goal-Setting with Families. U.S Department of Health and Human Services, Administration for Children and Families, 2016.

National Center on Parent, Family and Community Engagement. Building Partnership Series: For Early Childhood Professionals. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Administration for Children and Families, 2019.

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