Established in June of 2011, the Resilient Families Project (RFP) provides educational experiences to strengthen families and communities by promoting evidence-based habits of resilience, mindfulness and happiness in children and adults who are at-risk. This project and its programs serve the residents of Wayside Christian. Our three programs (Resilient Families Program, Resilient Children/Adolescents Program, and Resilient Adults Program) take place Thursdays nearly year-round from 6:00-8:30pm at Hotel Louisville, and typically serve ~100 children and adults experiencing homelessness and/or women in drug and alcohol recovery. Programs are facilitated by ~40 students, alumni and community volunteers from a variety of disciplines such as psychology, social work, nursing, education, and business. RFP offers student team members unique professional and personal development through training in the science of resilience and its application to real world problems and social issues.
The Resilient Families Program provides a structured interactive forum for children and adults to build family and community connections. Positive messages of resilience, mindfulness and compassion are conveyed in this community/family hour through a steady schedule of reading, music, and interactivities. The evidence-based practice of dialogic reading is employed, and carefully selected children’s storybooks are read aloud as a platform for promoting literacy and motivation toward reading, as well as sensitive, healthy interactions and positive attachments between adults and children.
The Resilient Children/Adolescents Program provides age-appropriate learning and enrichment activities including art, reading, homework and tutoring, cooperative games, music and dance, all aimed at promoting school-readiness (e.g., emotion regulation, social skills), good citizenship and engagement. Typically, more than 50 children attend each week’s program. Approximately 60% of children in attendance are under the age of six.
The Resilient Adults Program provides an empirically validated, strengths-based program focused on resilience and compassion, mindfulness, communication and listening skills, and conflict management skills. Didactic material, discussion and reflection are enhanced by games and crafts that underscore individual strengths to promote strong and healthy relationships, health and wellness. Team members facilitate interactive discussions on such topics as self-care and handling stress, positive parenting/conscious discipline, self-esteem, building support networks, child development, compassionate listening, and communicating effectively.
The Resilient Families Project is also a proud steward of three Little Free Libraries in Louisville, one of which sits on Wayside’s Hotel Louisville property at 120 W. Broadway.
Funds raised will be used for program materials (e.g., office supplies, equipment children's storybooks and books for all ages; craft materials and games; team t-shirts and badges) and to support students’ professional development (e.g., conference registration, training, and educational materials).