Designing Support Groups for Parents with Intellectual Disabilities

Scientific Rating:
NR
Not able to be Rated
See scale of 1-5
Child Welfare System Relevance Level:
Medium
See descriptions of 3 levels

About This Program

The information in this program outline is provided by the program representative and edited by the CEBC staff. Designing Support Groups for Parents with Intellectual Disabilities has been reviewed by the CEBC in the area of: Working with Parents with Cognitive Disabilities: Programs, but lacks the necessary research evidence to be given a Scientific Rating.

Target Population: Individuals or organizations who work with parents with intellectual disabilities

Brief Description

Designing Support Groups for Parents with Intellectual Disabilities by Through the Looking Glass (TLG) is an 86-page training module designed to be a tool for any individual or organization that is considering forming a group for parents with intellectual disabilities. The module includes the rationale and benefits of a specialized group, many concrete organizational and format ideas, examples of interventions by facilitators, important disability accommodations, small details that are important to success, and video clips of a TLG group with discussion questions. The module also includes a copy of TLG’s Strategies and Adaptations in Working with Parents with Intellectual Disabilities.

Program Goals:

The goals of Designing Support Groups for Parents with Intellectual Disabilities are:

  • Reduction in social isolation
  • Normalization of the challenges of parenting
  • Increased willingness to ask for parenting help
  • Increased repertoire of parenting ideas and skills
  • Increased self-esteem, parenting confidence, social skills, and assertiveness
  • Expanded social networks and friendships
  • Increased opportunities for community with other families
  • Increased acknowledgement of one’s disability, identification with a larger group of people with intellectual and other disabilities, peer support regarding one’s right to be treated with respect, and disability empowerment
  • Decreased vulnerability to domestic violence, substance abuse, exploitation, and depression

Essential Components

The essential components of Designing Support Groups for Parents with Intellectual Disabilities include:

  • Support group of up to 15 members that meets regularly (once per month or once per week)
  • Support group format
    • “Snack & chat”
    • “Move & groove” (warm-up activity such as balloon volleyball or stretches
    • “Talk time” (for support and addressing parenting and personal issues)
  • Lunch together
  • Special summer all-family activities
  • Accommodations that are disability accessible
  • Transportation assistance and provision of childcare (when needed)
  • Facilitators who provide members extra assistance and time regarding logistics or problem-solving as well as support to share in group
  • Ongoing support group (rather than drop-in or short-term) allows for changes to occur over time and offers ongoing support and monitoring; veteran members mentor new members
  • Movement toward disability identification and empowerment
  • Focus on and support of parent strengths
  • Facilitators who find opportunities to build self-esteem and confidence of members
  • Parenting topics that evolve from needs of members

Delivery Setting

This program is typically conducted in a(n):

  • Outpatient Clinic

Homework

This program does not include a homework component.

Languages

Designing Support Groups for Parents with Intellectual Disabilities does not have materials available in a language other than English.

Resources Needed to Run Program

The typical resources for implementing the program are:

A program needs to have meeting space for about 16 people plus a separate room in which to provide childcare (when needed). One or two group facilitators are needed plus childcare or playgroup staff (when childcare is needed).

Minimum Provider Qualifications

Experience with clients who have intellectual disabilities and experience in group facilitation are important qualifications. Mental health background is helpful.

Education and Training Resources

There is a manual that describes how to implement this program, and there is training available for this program.

Training Contact:
Training is obtained:

The module provides detailed information for implementing specialized support groups and may be ordered from Daisy Jacala at Through the Looking Glass, djacala@lookingglass.org, 510-848-1112, ext. 8107

In addition, phone or email consultation is available, if needed. TLG may also be contracted to provide further agency staff training regarding working with parents with intellectual disabilities, including implementation of support groups. For trainings or consultation, contact Sherrie Hansen, PhD (contact information above).

Number of days/hours:

Varies based on need

Relevant Published, Peer-Reviewed Research

This program has been reviewed and it was determined that this program lacks the type of published, peer-reviewed research that meets the CEBC criteria for a scientific rating of 1 – 5. Therefore, the program has been given the classification of "NR - Not able to be Rated." It was reviewed because it was identified by the topic expert as a program being used in the field, or it is being marketed and/or used in California with children receiving services from child welfare or related systems and their parents/caregivers. Some programs that are not rated may have published, peer-reviewed research that does not meet the above stated criteria or may have eligible studies that have not yet been published in the peer-reviewed literature. For more information on the "NR - Not able to be Rated" classification, please see the Scientific Rating Scale.

Child Welfare Outcomes: Not Specified

Currently, there are no published, peer-reviewed research studies for Designing Support Groups for Parents with Intellectual Disabilities.

References

No reference materials are currently available for Designing Support Groups for Parents with Intellectual Disabilities.

Contact Information

Name: Daisy Jacala
Agency/Affiliation: Through the Looking Glass
Website: www.lookingglass.org
Email:
Phone: (510) 848-1112 x8107
Fax: (510) 848-1112

Date Research Evidence Last Reviewed by CEBC: February 2014

Date Program Content Last Reviewed by Program Staff: February 2014

Date Program Originally Loaded onto CEBC: March 2014