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For Release: May 29, 2008
Contact: Pamela Williams
Office of Communications
405/271-5601

Celebrate Family Month by Building Strong Families
June is National Family Month

National Family Month is celebrated in June to promote the importance of building strong families. The Oklahoma State Department of Health (OSDH) supports family activities that help build strong and healthy families and communities.

“We want communities to help raise awareness about the importance of strong families and family values. Doing activities as a family and using good parenting skills can help families endure hardships and enjoy the good times even more,” said OSDH Community-Based Child Abuse Prevention Grant Coordinator, Sherie Trice.

Some of the basic principles that help build strong families are:

  • Build Trust – Strong families build trusting relations by following through with promises.
  • Show Commitment – Strong families feel like a team. They share traditions like having a family picnic on the Fourth of July or taking walks together after dinner and making time for family events or making sacrifices for one another.
  • Communicate – Members of strong families talk to one another about important decisions and daily plans. They discuss feelings as well as day-to-day activities at school or work. They talk about possible solutions to problems and work together to carry out the best solution.
  • Grow Through Crisis – Strong families use crises to learn and grow and realize that even bad experiences can bring about good changes. They admit problems and seek help when needed.
  • Spend Time Together – Strong families spend time together talking, reading, playing games, taking walks, cooking. They share special times of closeness like reading a good night story and tucking children into bed with a kiss.
  • Have Fun as a Family -- Strong families make plans to have fun as a family through trips or parties and use humor to reduce stress.
  • Show Love and Affection – Strong families show love and affection in small ways regardless of what children say or do. Family members might say, “I love you,” or “I’m happy we are in this together.” They give hugs and share family stories.

For more information on good parenting skills and developing strong families, contact the OSDH Family Support and Prevention Service, (405) 271-7611, or call your county health department. Additional information is available on the OSDH Web site at: http://www.ok.gov/health/Child_and_Family_Health/Family_Support_and_Prevention_Service/.
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