Community Matters

June 5, 2007 | admin

Healthy Marriages, Strong Families, Better Communities

According to the ACF, researchers have found many benefits for men and women who are in healthy marriages.

Men and women usually live longer, have better mental and physical health, report being happier, and, have higher incomes and build more wealth.

Children raised in families with healthy marriages are more likely to attend college, more likely to succeed academically, less likely to engage in delinquent behaviors or abuse drugs and alcohol, and less likely to divorce when they get married.

Communities are strong when families are solid and marriages are healthy. Community benefits include higher rates of physically and emotionally healthy citizens, higher rates of educated citizens, lower crime statistics, and less need for social services.

BLISS Partners with the Community

With this grant, BLISS continually partners with leaders in local government agencies, community organizations and houses of worship in Washington, DC, to increase awareness of the importance of healthy marriages and to offer the BLISS seminars to members of their communities. In addition, BLISS offers a “train-the-facilitator” program to specified volunteer leaders within the community. A mentor couples program is also available to participants, also on a volunteer basis. Couples with experience overcoming their marital challenges work with BLISS participants who need coaching.

BLISS Social Work Services

BLISS employs a full-time social worker to answer questions, help with difficult situations and provide referrals for participants, mentor couples and facilitators to outside service agencies as needed. BLISS is committed to helping people cope with marriage problems. Our dedicated staff makes every effort to return calls to our “warm line” within 24 hours, usually sooner. If issues arise that are beyond the scope of our program, such as childcare, substance abuse, job training, etc., our social worker will work with families to make appropriate referrals. Our social worker also conducts refresher seminars throughout the year so that people can update their skills as needed. Post-seminar evaluation and follow-up are included in the BLISS program.

Visit the following links for more information and/or resources relating to healthy marriages:

National Healthy Marriage Resource Center
www.healthymarriageinfo.org

Smart Marriages: The Coalition for Marriage, Families, and Couples Education
www.smartmarriages.com

Administration for Children & Families/Healthy Marriage Initiative
www.acf.hhs.gov/healthymarriage

District of Columbia Social Services Center
http://ssc.rrc.dc.gov/ssc/site/default.asp

The National Marriage Project
http://marriage.rutgers.edu

The National Domestic Violence Hotline
www.ndvh.org

The National Coalition for Domestic Violence
www.ncadv.org

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