The National Center of Addiction and Substance Abuse (CASA) created Family Day as a day recognized across the nation to promote bonding through family mealtime, encouraging mealtime activities on a regular basis to increase family interaction and togetherness. Long-term benefits can lead to outcomes that reflect positively on the broader community.
A recent national survey of teens to assess the benefits of family dinners showed positive youth outcomes including getting better grades, keeping away from alcohol and drugs, leading healthier lifestyles and more.
Embracing the national Family Day Initiative, the Urban Affairs unit of the Alabama Cooperative Extension System has included it as a part of its new Family Advocacy Through Caring Engagement Strategies (FACES) program initiative.
Six urban regional agents servicing five metropolitan areas and representing 15 Alabama counties participated in this national program and reached more than 500 individuals. Each urban agent conducted Family Day programs that involved supporting educational outreach and a culminating family dinner event. The programs were also recognized by local officials who presented Family Day proclamations. Family Day programs increased family interactions by more than 2,500 hours and resulted in an estimated 250 families pledging to be STAR families, pledging to Spend time, Talk, Answer questions and Recognize the power of families.
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