News from the Executive Office

From the 2017 Family Engagement Conference

On Thursday the state held its Family Engagement Summit. I have written about family engagement for this blog in the past. I’m not fond of the term because families don’t see themselves in it. It’s a term used by service providers and sometimes governing bodies that connotes doing things with families for their benefit (with at times the additional benefit of improving our programs). I think what we all want, especially as parents (though now as I’m older, I want as a child with respect to my aging parent), is the ability to be engaged fully in the lives of our loved ones. That requires an abundance of the five protective factors (or “promotive” factors as some call them), which I’ve written about for this blog, too. They are (my appended version):

Knowledge of caregiving
Social and emotional competence
Social connections
Concrete support

It is likely that if we as service providers concentrate on developing these strengths within ourselves and our families and colleagues, eventually all of us, including other families who come within our sphere of influence, can fully engage with their loved ones.