AMES, Iowa – Families are invited to participate in “InterACT,” a free workshop series hosted by Iowa State University Extension and Outreach. The educational series is open to parents and other primary caregivers of all types (foster parents, grandparents, adoptive parents, etc.,) with children or grandchildren in third through sixth grade. The virtual sessions begin Oct. 9.
InterACT is based on the Acceptance and Commitment Therapy model, referred to as ACT, explained Malisa Rader, an ISU Extension and Outreach human sciences specialist in family wellbeing. InterACT aims to improve emotional and social wellbeing in custodial and foster families by teaching adults and children about personal values, mindfulness and self-acceptance.
“All parents benefit from an opportunity to learn tips and new strategies to relate with our children and enjoy being with them,” Rader said. “The InterACT program allows you to connect with other families in Iowa, as well as learn and practice new coping skills and parenting tools.”
Participating in the workshops can be a positive experience for children and adults, Rader said. Participants will learn how to build skills for being mindful, making decisions and developing positive attitudes. They will gain resources, support and practical tips to create and nurture rewarding relationships. Upon course completion, adult and youth participants will receive a gift card. Foster parent credit is available.
The online workshop series includes short videos and group discussions. Participants will partake in four live, virtual sessions via Zoom followed by reflective self-paced lessons. Youth live sessions are from 6-7 p.m. and adult live sessions are from 7:15-8:15 p.m. on the following dates:
- Sunday, Oct. 9.
- Sunday, Oct. 16.
- Sunday, Oct. 23.
- Sunday, Oct. 30.
For more information or to register, contact the project coordinators at CYFAR@iastate.edu or 515-957-1593. CYFAR is a collaborative research and education effort to increase positive outcomes for children, youth and families at risk.
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