Creating Lasting Family Connections® (CLFC)

About This Program

Target Population: Children ages 9-17 in age appropriate groupings (e.g. ages 9-12, 13-15, or 15-17) and their parents, guardians, or other adult caregivers

For children/adolescents ages: 9 – 17

For parents/caregivers of children ages: 9 – 17

Program Overview

Creating Lasting Family Connections® (CLFC) is a family-focused program that aims to build the resiliency of youth aged 9 to 17 years and reduce the frequency of their alcohol and other drug (AOD) use. CLFC is implemented through a community system, such as churches, schools, recreation centers, and court-referred settings. The six modules of the CLFC curriculum, administered to parents/guardians and youth in18-20 weekly training sessions, focus on:

  • Imparting knowledge and understanding about the use of alcohol, marijuana, and other drugs including tobacco
  • Improving communication and conflict resolution skills
  • Building coping mechanisms to resist negative social influences
  • Encouraging the use of community services when personal or family problems arise
  • Engendering self-knowledge, personal responsibility, and respect for others
  • Delaying the onset and reducing the frequency of AOD use among participating youth

The program supports problem identification and referrals to other community services for participants when necessary.

Program Goals

The goals of Creating Lasting Family Connections® (CLFC) are:

  • Increase parent and youth knowledge and understanding about alcohol, tobacco, marijuana and other drugs
  • Improve personal and family communication and conflict resolution skills
  • Build coping mechanisms to resist negative social influences
  • Increase the use of community services when personal or family problems arise, including substance use treatment
  • Increase self-knowledge, personal responsibility, respect for others
  • Delay the onset of AOD use among participating youth
  • Reduce the frequency of both adult and youth AOD use
  • Increase refusal skills for parents and youth
  • Increase family bonding
  • Increase relationship skills for parents and youth

Essential Components

The essential components of Creating Lasting Family Connections® (CLFC) include:

  • The CLFC program consists of 6 modules.
    • The parent modules offer interactive instruction to adults:
      • Each of the 3 individual parent modules is 5-6 sessions with each one lasting from 1.5 to 2.5 hours depending on breaks and the possibility of including a meal.
        • The “Developing Positive Parental Influences” module includes the following content:
          • Substance abuse and family dynamics
          • Using personal, genetic, social and lifestyle risk factors to create a personal family prevention plan
          • An examination of intervention, referral, and treatment models
          • Setting clear family standards for parents and children
        • The “Raising Resilient Youth” module includes the following content:
          • Knowledge, attitudes, and behaviors regarding family management practices (including developing and implementing healthy expectations and consequences)
          • Communicating parental expectations effectively
          • Growth needs of children at various ages
          • Managing and communicating thoughts and feelings appropriately
          • Giving and receiving feedback
          • Assisting youth in making healthy choices
        • The “Getting Real” Adult module includes:
          • Highly interactive and coaching instruction
          • The following content:
            • A focus on refusal skills
            • Verbal and nonverbal communication
            • Effective communication and negotiation
            • Effective listening
            • Communication within the family unit
            • Establishing and maintaining healthy interpersonal relationships
            • Promoting the skills of emotional intelligence
    • The youth modules offer interactive instruction to youth:
      • Each of the 3 individual youth modules is 5-6 sessions with each one lasting 1.5 to 2.5 hours in length, again depending on snacks, breaks and/or a meal being provided. (Sometimes, it is very helpful for recruitment if families are provided meals in conjunction with the program.)
        • The “Developing Independence and Responsibility” module includes:
          • The following content:
            • Parent and child job descriptions
            • Healthy family behaviors
            • The dynamics of independence and responsibility
            • The importance of open and honest communication
          • Role playing exercises that ask the youth to visualize themselves as growing successfully into positions of authority where they must define expectations and appropriate behavior, and how to set consequences for others.
          • Exercises that increase:
            • Self-esteem
            • Empathy
            • Understanding
            • Self-respect
            • Respect for parents and other authority figures
        • The “Developing a Positive Response” module includes:
          • Information on how to respond to the likely offers or invitations to engage in alcohol or drug use with healthy responses
          • The following content:
            • Knowledge, healthy attitudes, and beliefs about tobacco, alcohol, and drugs (including marijuana)
            • Personal and family alcohol and other drug use review
            • Making healthy choices
            • How to resist unhealthy or negative social pressures to use alcohol and other drugs in what you or your family may come to believe are unhealthy ways
        • The “Getting Real” Youth module includes:
          • Highly interactive and coaching instruction
          • The following content:
            • A focus on refusal skills
            • Verbal and nonverbal communication
            • Effective communication and negotiation
            • Effective listening
            • Communication within the family unit
            • Establishing and maintaining healthy interpersonal relationships
            • Promoting the skills of emotional intelligence
    • Combined Parent and Youth “Getting Real” session(s):
      • Usually requires one or two additional sessions
      • Parents and youth participants participating in roleplays together.
      • Ideally, parents and youth are each involved simultaneously in their own separate three-module track lasting for 15 to 18 sessions depending on the length of the sessions.
      • Appropriate Case Management and/or Referral Services should be provided by agency or individual offering the CLFC program:
        • This requires a practical understanding of how a participating adult or youth might display the possible need for substance use and/or mental health screening or services and how to make an appropriate referral.
        • Trainers are expected to be familiar with local services and to develop a referral resource network.
        • Adaptations of the CLFC program are available for use with parents and other caring adults without youth involvement and for youth involvement without parents and other caring adults (as long as they gain written parental or guardian permission to do so).

Program Delivery

Child/Adolescent Services

Creating Lasting Family Connections® (CLFC) directly provides services to children/adolescents and addresses the following:

  • At-risk for substance abuse possibly due to family history, lack of services, family disorganization, challenging community environment, and the following other known risk factors: family history of substance use disorder, prenatal alcohol exposure, adverse childhood experiences, difficult temperament, cold and unresponsive mother behavior, parental modeling of drug/alcohol use, poor impulse control, low harm avoidance, sensation seeking, lack of behavioral self-control/regulation, aggressiveness, anxiety, depression, hyperactivity/attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), antisocial behavior, early persistent problem behaviors, early substance use, lack of commitment to conventional adult roles or antisocial behavior.

Parent/Caregiver Services

Creating Lasting Family Connections® (CLFC) directly provides services to parents/caregivers and addresses the following:

  • Parents/caregivers of youth at-risk for substance abuse possibly due to family history, lack of services, family disorganization, challenging community environment, and the following other known risk factors: parent of child with adverse childhood experiences, permissive parenting, parent–child conflict, inadequate supervision and monitoring, low parental warmth, lack of or inconsistent discipline, parental hostility, harsh discipline, low parental aspirations for child, child abuse/maltreatment, substance use among parents (or siblings), parental favorable attitudes toward alcohol and/or drugs.
Services Involve Family/Support Structures:

This program involves the family or other support systems in the individual's treatment: In many cases, parental recruitment and involvement proves difficult and/or impossible. Children may have surrogates involved in the parental or adult component with permission from the actual parent or guardian. This can include grandparents, aunts, uncles, neighbors, and even adult siblings of the participating youth as adult representatives in the adult/parent component.

Recommended Intensity:

Adults typically attend 1 or 2 weekly 2-hour sessions, or weekend retreats comprised of up to 16 hours each. Youth typically attend 1 or 2 weekly 1.5- to 2-hour sessions, or weekend retreats comprised of up to 16 hours each. Parents and youth may also attend case management services on an as needed basis.

Recommended Duration:

8-15 weeks depending on how often the co-occurring adult and youth sessions are meeting each week or within three co-occurring adult and youth weekend retreats.

Delivery Settings

This program is typically conducted in a(n):

  • Community Daily Living Setting
  • Outpatient Clinic
  • Public Child Welfare Agency (Dept. of Social Services, etc.)
  • School Setting (Including: Day Care, Day Treatment Programs, etc.)

Homework

Creating Lasting Family Connections® (CLFC) includes a homework component:

Occasional optional homework suggestions are offered.

Languages

Creating Lasting Family Connections® (CLFC) has materials available in a language other than English:

Spanish

For information on which materials are available in this language, please check on the program's website or contact the program representative (contact information is listed at the bottom of this page).

Resources Needed to Run Program

The typical resources for implementing the program are:

All CLFC training materials, two CLFC certified trainers each for both adult and youth modules, two separate training rooms for separate youth and adult services which meet published developer standards (or one room to be used at separate times for adults and youth). Ancillary case management services as needed.

Education and Training

Prerequisite/Minimum Provider Qualifications

There is no minimum education or experience requirement, but there is a strong preference for healthy caring adults with group facilitation experience and strong communication, public speaking, and parenting skills.

Education and Training Resources

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

There are three trainer manuals and participant notebooks for adult CLFC services and three trainer manuals and participant notebooks for youth CLFC services.

Adult Manuals and Notebooks:

  • Strader, T., & Noe, T. (2015). Creating Lasting Family Connections developing positive parental influences training manual. Resilient Futures Network, LLC.
  • Strader, T., & Noe, T. (2015). Creating Lasting Family Connections developing positive parental influences participant notebook. Resilient Futures Network, LLC.
  • Strader, T., & Noe, T. (1998). Creating Lasting Family Connections raising resilient youth training manual. Resilient Futures Network, LLC.
  • Strader, T., & Noe, T. (1998). Creating Lasting Family Connections participant notebook. Resilient Futures Network, LLC.
  • Strader, T., Noe, T., & Mann, W. C. (1998). Creating Lasting Family Connections getting real training manual. Resilient Futures Network, LLC.
  • Strader, T., Noe, T., & Mann, W. C. (1998). Creating Lasting Family Connections getting real participant notebook. Resilient Futures Network, LLC.

Youth Manuals and Notebooks

  • Strader, T., Noe, T., & Mann, W. C. (1998). Creating Lasting Family Connections getting real training manual. Resilient Futures Network, LLC.
  • Strader, T., Noe, T., & Mann, W. C. (1998). Creating Lasting Family Connections getting real participant notebook. Resilient Futures Network, LLC.
  • Strader, T., & Noe, T. (1998). Creating Lasting Family Connections Developing independence and responsibility training manual. Resilient Futures Network, LLC.
  • Strader, T., & Noe, T. (1998). Creating Lasting Family Connections developing independence and responsibility participant notebook. Resilient Futures Network, LLC.
  • Strader, T., & Noe, T. (1998). Creating Lasting Family Connections developing a positive response training manual. Resilient Futures Network, LLC.
  • Strader, T., & Noe, T. (1998). Creating Lasting Family Connections developing a positive response participant notebook. Resilient Futures Network, LLC.

All CLFC adult and youth training materials (trainer manuals, participant notebooks, poster sets, and ancillary training-related materials, etc.) are available for purchase online at http://myresilientfuturesnetwork.com/ or by contacting the training contact listed below.

Training Contact:
Training is obtained:

There is a national training and certification system for the CLFC program.

The CLFC Implementation Training course is offered in a standard 10-day version, a 9-day (three 3-day training sessions) version or a 5-day accelerated version. (Nine to ten days of training are recommended for most agencies and individuals wishing to implement the CLFC Program.) All versions of the CLFC Implementation Training are offered periodically at the COPES National Office in Louisville Kentucky, and in various regional locations around the nation. Groups of five or more may also inquire about scheduling private or customized training sessions at their own site. Agencies can purchase on-site CLFC Implementation Training for up to 18 participating staff from the Resilient Futures Network (RFN) National Training Team at their local site.

Individuals can also schedule individual attendance at one of the local, regional or national CLFC Implementation Trainings that occur at various times throughout the year.

Anyone receiving the CLFC Implementation Training course (or any Customized CLFC Implementation Training provided by COPES Inc. or RFN) will receive CLFC Implementation Trainer Certification and 10 hours of ongoing technical assistance by telephone with implementation issues. Each person earning this certification will receive a printed certificate acknowledging such status. Further, COPES and the Resilient Futures Network maintains a National Registry of Certified CLFC Implementation Trainers on file for reference purposes. This certification enables one to train both adult/parent and youth participants in the CLFC program. This training alone does not enable one to train other professionals to implement the CLFC program with either adults or youth. This is not a “training of trainers” certification. For those who wish to train others to implement CLFC, there is a Master Trainer Certification available for those who qualify.

Number of days/hours:

The number of days/hours of the CLFC Implementation Training are the same for direct service providers and supervisors. (Nine to ten days of training are recommended for most agencies and individuals wishing to implement the CLFC Program.) The 10 hours of implementation consultation and support are included as part of any training package.

Implementation Information

Pre-Implementation Materials

There are pre-implementation materials to measure organizational or provider readiness for Creating Lasting Family Connections® (CLFC) as listed below:

An optional pre-implementation assessment is available at the time of adoption or prior to making the decision to adopt the program. A variety of other materials (tools, assessments, tracking mechanisms) are also available to organizations or providers to measure organizational and provider readiness, to protect fidelity, to support planning and quality control management of CLFC services and to measure effectiveness of services to adults and youth. Some of these materials are publicly available for free download online, such as the fidelity implementation tool, at http://copes.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/10/CLFC-Fidelity-Instrument.pdf while other materials are available for purchase at http://myresilientfuturesnetwork.com/. Please contact the training contact, listed in section above..

Formal Support for Implementation

There is formal support available for implementation of Creating Lasting Family Connections® (CLFC) as listed below:

10 hours of implementation consultation and support by telephone are included as part of any training package. Additional on-site, telephone or email consultation is available at a variety of rates based on the experience and capability of the consultant selected.

Fidelity Measures

There are fidelity measures for Creating Lasting Family Connections® (CLFC) as listed below:

The CLFC Fidelity Instrument is a self-administered tool that outlines ideal, acceptable, and unacceptable CLFC implementation practices. CLFC Implementation Training informs and qualifies individuals to use this tool to monitor local implementation practices.

The CLFC Fidelity Instrument is publicly available on the program’s website: http://copes.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/10/CLFC-Fidelity-Instrument.pdf

The CLFC Fidelity Instrument is a self-administered tool that outlines ideal, acceptable and unacceptable CLFC implementation practices. CLFC Implementation Training informs and qualifies individuals to use this tool to monitor local implementation practices.

Implementation Guides or Manuals

There are implementation guides or manuals for Creating Lasting Family Connections® (CLFC) as listed below:

The CLFC Program developer and National Training Director have a number of resources and tools to assist program managers and supervisors to gain deep insight into a variety of proven strategies to overcome possible barriers to program management, staff and program participant recruitment, training, attrition, monitoring, evaluation and related challenges to successful program implementation.

Please contact the training contact, listed in section above.

Implementation Cost

There are no studies of the costs of Creating Lasting Family Connections® (CLFC).

Research on How to Implement the Program

Research has not been conducted on how to implement Creating Lasting Family Connections® (CLFC).

Relevant Published, Peer-Reviewed Research

Child Welfare Outcome: Child/Family Well-Being

Johnson, K., Strader, T., Berbaum, M., Bryant, D., Bucholtz, G., Collins, D., & Noe, T. (1996). Reducing alcohol and other drug use by strengthening community, family, and youth resiliency: An evaluation of the Creating Lasting Connections Program. Journal of Adolescent Research, 11(1), 36–67. https://doi.org/10.1177/0743554896111004

Type of Study: Randomized controlled trial
Number of Participants: 217 (97 parents, 120 youth)

Population:

  • Age — Adults: Not specified, Children: 12–14 years
  • Race/Ethnicity — 16% African American (families)
  • Gender — Adults: 84% Female and 15% Male; Children: 85% Female
  • Status — Participants were high-risk youth and their families.

Location/Institution: 5 church communities in rural, suburban, and inner-city settings within the Louisville, Kentucky area

Summary: (To include comparison groups, outcomes, measures, notable limitations)
This study examines the effects of Creating Lasting Connections (CLC) [now called Creating Lasting Family Connections (CLFC)] on community, youth, and family resiliency outcome measures and alcohol and other drug (AOD) use among high-risk youths ages 12 through 14. Ninety-seven parents (n=49 program group, 48 comparison) and 120 youth (n=59 program group, 61 comparison). Families participating in the study were randomized to the CLC or to a comparison group. Measures utilized include the Personal Experience Inventory (PEI). Results showed that the program successfully engaged church communities in substance abuse prevention activities and produced positive direct effects on family and youth resiliency, as well as moderating effects on onset and frequency of AOD use. Limitations include lack of postintervention follow-up.

Length of postintervention follow-up: None.

Johnson, K., Bryant, D. D., Collins, D. A., Noe, T. D., Strader, T. N., & Berbaum, M. (1998). Preventing and reducing alcohol and other drug use among high-risk youths by increasing family resilience. Social Work, 43(4), 297-308. https://doi.org/10.1093/sw/43.4.297

Type of Study: Randomized controlled trial
Number of Participants: 326 (143 parents, 184 youth)

Population:

  • Age — Adults: Not specified, Children: 12-14 years
  • Race/Ethnicity — 16% African American (families)
  • Gender — Adults: Not specified; Children: 85% Female
  • Status — Participants were high-risk youth and their families.

Location/Institution: 5 church communities in rural, suburban, and inner-city settings within the Louisville, Kentucky area

Summary: (To include comparison groups, outcomes, measures, notable limitations)
This study examines the effects of Creating Lasting Connections (CLC) [now called Creating Lasting Family Connections (CLFC)] to delay onset and reduce the frequency of alcohol and other drug (AOD) use among high risk youths, ages 12 to 14. Families participating in the study were randomized to the CLC or to a comparison group. Measures utilized include the Personal Experience Inventory (PEI). Results indicate that the program produced positive direct effect on family resilience. Results also found positive moderating effects on delayed onset of AOD use and frequency of AOD use among youth in the form of conditional relationships with changes in those family resilience factors that were targeted by the program. Limitations include attrition and lack of follow-up.

Length of postintervention follow-up: None.

Additional References

Strader, T. N., Collins, D. A., & Noe, T. D. (2000). Building healthy individuals, families, and communities: Creating lasting connections. In T. Gullotta (Series Ed.) Prevention in practice library. Kluwer Academic/Plenum Publishers.

Strader, T. N., Kokoski, C., Collins, D., Shamblen, S., & McKiernan, P. (2018). Creating Lasting Family Connections Program. In J. Lebow, A. Chambers, & D. Breunlin (Eds.). Encyclopedia of couple and family therapy. Springer. https://doi.org//10.1007/978-3-319-15877-8_365-1

Contact Information

Teresa Boyd Strader, LCSW
Title: National Training Director of the Creating Lasting Family Connections Curriculum Series
Agency/Affiliation: Resilient Future's Network, LLC
Website: myresilientfutures_network.com
Email:
Phone: (502) 897-1111
Ted N. Strader, MS
Title: Curriculum Developer of the Creating Lasting Family Connections Curriculum Series
Agency/Affiliation: COPES, Inc
Website: www.copes.org
Email:
Phone: (502) 583-6820

Date Research Evidence Last Reviewed by CEBC: April 2019

Date Program Content Last Reviewed by Program Staff: June 2020

Date Program Originally Loaded onto CEBC: June 2020