Family Day: Celebrating Parent Engagement & Healthy Happy Kids

Monday, September 28th is Family Day

Monday, September 28th, 2015, is Family Day, and the Communities That Care Coalition is encouraging families to celebrate by spending quality time together as a family.  Family Day is a national movement, launched by Columbia University’s Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse (CASA) to celebrate parental engagement as an effective tool to help keep kids substance-free, healthy and happy. 

Research shows that the more often children eat dinner with their families, the less likely they are to smoke, drink or use drugs, and the more likely they are to perform well in school.  Data from the Communities That Care Coalition’s 2015 Youth Health Survey for Franklin County and the North Quabbin shows that local young people who eat dinner with their families most nights of the week are about half as likely to smoke cigarettes, binge drink, or use marijuana as their peers who eat with their families less often. They are also far less likely to report symptoms of depression.

Spending time together regularly helps kids feel connected to their families.  This feeling of connectedness is a “super-protective factor” that helps kids avoid risky behaviors and promotes their healthy development.  Family Day helps remind busy families of the invaluable role that parental involvement plays in young people’s lives.

The great news is that most local families are spending time together regularly!  This year’s Youth Health Survey also shows that 58% of local young people have dinner with their families most nights of the week.  And more than 9 out of 10 said that they enjoy spending time with one or both of their parents!

The Communities That Care Coalition is committed to helping young people in Franklin County and the North Quabbin meet their full potential and thrive.  The Coalition celebrates Family Day and the importance of family time as an effective step in reaching this goal.

Here are 8 archived posts from Hilltown Families monthly column, The Dinner Table: Ideas and Inspirations for Family Mealtimes:

  1. 6 Remedies to the Pre-Dinner Snack Dilemma
  2. 6 Ways Community Can Support Family Dinners
  3. Family Dinner Resolution
  4. Return of the Toast!
  5. Don’t Yuck on My Yum!
  6. Supportive Pantry & Easy Meals
  7. Extending Dinner Time with Walking Desserts
  8. Letting Go of Perfect!

For more information about national Family Day visit www.CASAFamilyDay.org.
For wonderful family dinner resources visit www.thefamilydinnerproject.org.
For more information about the Communities That Care Coalition of Franklin County and the North Quabbin visit www.communitiesthatcarecoalition.org.

– Submitted by Kat Allen

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