Wednesday, July 21 / 11:00a - 12:30p

Children's Experiences in Families Affected by Domestic Violence  

Workshop Number: A-1

Description: Discover the roller coaster journey that foster parents take and why your expertise is just what they need.  In this interactive workshop, you will hear confessions from parents about how fostering impacts their marriages and learn three specific ways you can support foster families in your community.

Presenter: Lupe Valdez, South Texas Family Connections 


Motion Matters 

Workshop Number: A-2

Description: Moving is Learning: Incorporating movement into workshops to increase retainment of information, and strengthen participation.

Presenter: Christina Jewett, MSW, AVANCE-Houston 


Skills and Drills: A Workshop for Marriage Educators, Mentors and Coaches

Workshop Number: A-3

Description: Marriage is the ultimate team sport! Help couples dominate the game by teaching core relationships skills through interactive drills.

Presenter: Leslie Griffin, Ph.D., CFLE, Marriage Champs


Wednesday, July 21 / 1:45p - 3:15p

Recruitment and Retention of African American Couples 

Workshop Number: B-1

Description:  This workshop will discuss ways in which to recruit and retain African Americans in programming.

Presenter: Avis Files, Pathway Toledo 

Community Healing Community

Workshop Number: B-2

Description: The suffering that is not transformed gets transmitted. Based on two research based and trauma informed programs: Safe, Secure and Loved and Family Wellness, this workshop provides a model on how to strengthen our families and communities from the inside out. Key elements in wellbeing (healthy attachment, mindfulness, compassion, emotional presence) are learned and practiced by mothers of young children and the people who support them. Other benefits of the model: Community-led, promotes intergenerational healing, low-cost implementation, applicable to families from diverse backgrounds.

Presenter: Ana Morante, LMFT, CFLE, Family Wellness Associates


Pinocchios Nose: Truth or Fiction

Workshop Number: B-3

Description: Unlike in the fable Pinocchio, when our actions don't align with our beliefs or when we are dishonest our noses stay the same size.  When we are not acting with integrity the consequences may not be as obvious, but they can certainly be catastrophic, especially in our relationships.  In this workshop, participants will work through processes and learn tools for building and maintaining integrity-based relationships in all facets of their life.

Speaker: Lindsay Pyfer and Cameron Thompson, Ascension, Inc.


Laying a Foundation for Healthy Relationships and Marriage - New Sex Education Standards 

Workshop Number: B-4

Description: What are our children learning about marriage and healthy relationships in today’s sex education classes? This session contrasts different approaches to sex education and their correlating content related to marriage and healthy relationships. The new “K-12 Standards for Optimal Sexual Development” will be presented with a foundation of positive character and healthy relationships. This powerful new tool for families, schools and communities will promote healthy marriage and family formation.

Speaker: Lori Kuykendall, MPH, Medical Institute 


Thursday, July 22 / 11:00a - 12:30p


Working with Prisoners and their Families to Create Strong Family Bonds

Workshop Number: C-1

Description: Effective strategies to serve prisoners and their families in order to develop strong marriages and healthy parent child relationships. This workshop will equip participants to learn an effective model for successful family reunification and personal transformation. 

Presenter:  Ron and Catherine Tijerina, The RIDGE Project


One Heart, Two Homes: Co-parenting Tools for Working with Single Parents, Step Parents, Never Married Parents and Todays Complex Families

Workshop Number: C-2

Description: What do we do when traditional marriage isn't an option? In this workshop attendees will enjoy an overview of co-parenting ideas that help professionals navigate the lingo, the lifestyle and the logistics of raising children with divided parents and complex families. The workshop will include a very lively and interactive family sculpt as part of the presentation that identifies what competing attachments are for kids in divided families. 
 It is possible for children to THRIVE with one heart between two homes! Come learn how!

Presenter: Tammy and Jay Daughtry, MMFT's, Co-Parenting International 


The Missing Link in Making Marriage Work 

Workshop Number: C-3

Description: Marriage is the hardest thing we will ever do. To quote David Schnarch, he states, "Marriage is a people growing machine." And it is true. If we want to grow up emotionally, marriage is the one avenue orchestrated to do that. What is it that keeps us from creating a space for us to both be able to step into that more mature person as opposed to the learned behavior patterns from our childhood in our family of origin?

Presenter:  Carol Greenberg, Journey of My Heart Counseling 


Marriage Coaches - Part of the "Secret Sauce" in Making Your Marriage and Relationship Education Program a Success

Workshop Number: C-4

Description: Discover how volunteer marriage coaches can add tremendous value to your relationship and marriage education (RME) program. Whether working with dating/premarital couples, married couples, or couples in crisis, a marrige coach can be key.  Workshop includes highlights from recent research completed by the Florida State University Center for Prevention Research.  This research found significant long-term impact of one RME program that used marriage coaches working with U.S. military couples.

Presenter:  Richard Albertson, Live the Life 

Friday, July 23 / 9:00a - 10:30a

Getting to the Root Cause by Building Healthy Relationships

Workshop Number: D-1

Description: So many deleterious health outcomes are prevalent in the culture such as depression, substance use, crime, school shootings, drop out rates, vandalism, teen pregnancy just to name a few. This workshop will connect the dots regarding going upstream for primary prevention through building  healthy relationships and positive social supports and getting to the heart of the matter.

Presenter: Joneen Mackenzie, RN, The Center for Relationship Education


Relationship Satisfaction, Skills Acquisition, & Emotional Intelligence: An Exploratory Analysis of HMRE with Low-Income Couples 

Workshop Number: D-2

Description: Marriage and relationship education programs have demonstrated moderate positive effects in middle-class couples. There is limited research that focuses on MRE programs dedicated to low-income couples. Supporting Healthy Relationships (SHR) has provided services for low-income couples for 14 years. The program provides couples with relationship education, employment services, and family support services. SHR's recent local evaluation was an exploratory analysis regarding the association between HMRE services and the quality of relationships in low-income couples. This study used a within-group design to conduct an exploratory analysis to assess correlations and outcomes and to examine factors and sub-groups that may contribute to these results. 

Presenter: Traci Maynigo, Psy.D., Ed.M., Montefiore Medical Center, and Moshe Moeller, Ph.D., Montefiore Medical Center


Empowering Urban Youth For Healthy Relationships

Workshop Number: D-3

Description: Marginalized youth can move into healthy, purposeful adulthood when they grasp a vision for their lives and are equipped with life skills, communication tools, and developmentally-appropriate career exploration opportunities. In this workshop, Healthy Babies Project, Inc. (HBP) presents its working blueprint for life skills, relationship competencies, and job readiness education implemented successfully in the poorest neighborhoods of our nations capital for the last five years. HBP will (1) Give an overview of how we structure the life skills and job readiness intervention and develop a community partner referral funnel (2) Explain how staff and volunteer facilitators use an appropriate evidence-based intervention to operate a highly-engaging interactive program producing documented results in urban youth (3) Show how we have built strong, working relationships with 30+ community partners to provide social services and referrals as each youth needs.

Presenter: Jazmine Brazier and Christine Marhone, Healthy Babies Project 


Friday, July 23 / 11:00a - 12:30p

Preparing for an RCT Evaluation

Workshop Number: E-1

Description: Participants will learn hands on how to prepare for an RCT and what they are really about. The joys and pains of the RCT will be discussed.

Presenter: Avis Files, Pathway Toledo


Character-Based Couple Vitality

Workshop Number: E-2

Description:  Successful couple relationships rarely happen by accident. Most require intentional focus on elements that affect their connection and communications and create couple vitality. The presenters have linked couple and character research, as well as individual and couple-coaching experience, to create a character-based model for couple relationships. Professionals working with couples can incorporate these elements into their work through what they learn in the workshop and can augment their capability with an available assessment.

Presenter: Susanne M. Alexander, Marriage Transformation, LLC, W. Grant Peirce IV, Peirce Group


Creating a Family Vision Tree

Workshop Number: E-3

Description: This interactive workshop is intended to help students or even engaged couples, to recognize that they have choices in building their future family; they don't have to repeat cycles of unhealthy behaviors, negativity, or abuse, there is hope, it IS possible to build a healthy family and it begins with a plan, a vision of what you're working towards. Participants will create their own healthy family vision tree in a small group.

Presenter: Amy Gilford, Marriage and Relationship Education Center 


Building Your Team To Do Dream Work 

Workshop Number: E-4

Description: Come and learn how to build a dream team and gain an understanding of how different personalities can effectively work together. Challenge your team to be the best they can be!

Presenter: Doug Stevens, Live the Life