Strengthening Families of North Texas

Strengthening Families of North Texas We are comprehensive family support program for parents of children up to six years of age who are experiencing extraordinary stress. Strengthening Families of North Texas provides an effective model of child protection and family preservation, building on the belief that most children are best served when they remain with their families.

Operating as usual

We have one more day distributing toys to our Collin County families!  Wednesday, 4-7 pm, call us at 8679470!

We have one more day distributing toys to our Collin County families! Wednesday, 4-7 pm, call us at 8679470!


Beautiful morning, makes a beautiful day! Join us this morning at the Oak Point Park and Nature Preserve, Los Rios in Plano!


Just updated our profile for this year's North Texas Giving Day, September 22, 2016!
Just this year alone we have served over 30 families with parenting classes, home visits, counseling and respite care! Oh did I mention in English and Spanish?
We have a family picnic scheduled June 28 with City of Plano teen volunteers and Collin College Interns assisting.
Let the fun begin and recruit more families - it is what we do!


An Ounce of Prevention…

I believe parents as a general rule do not wake up in the morning and ask themselves “how am I going to abuse or neglect my child today?” Parents are not given a manual on how to raise their children when they take their child home, nor are they given resources to help them cope with the stresses of raising another human being. This situation knows no age, gender, or economic barrier…we all can fall victim to this. Parents use the teachings of how they were raised and modify that style to what they think is best. With no one to confide in except their role models or others in a similar situation, bad habits are propagated. Most of us survive and thrive…others fall victim to abuse and neglect, and bad things happen. There is no simple answer to what causes child abuse and neglect...but I know, as Ben Franklin said, "an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure".


The story above illustrates that…if you can focus efforts to treat “at risk” families, you will reduce the incidence of child abuse and neglect. Working with at-risk families means providing parenting classes, counseling, respite care and home visits to name a few. Treating the issues that lead to abuse and neglect means that the family environment never gets so bad that abuse and neglect results. Efforts focused on prevention will never fully stop abuse and neglect, but society puts way more focus on dealing with the aftermath of abuse than we do preventing it from occurring in the first place. And let’s face it, these horrible examples of abuse and neglect get headlines, not the families that are helped by organizations focused on at risk families.

We are told that CPS is overworked and underpaid. Search on why people leave their jobs and many will tell you that if you took a job for the money (especially for more money), you took that job for the wrong reason. You can’t pay people enough to be a CPS caseworker and to deal with the number of issues that they have to deal with today. If real efforts are made to focus on prevention, this should result in:
• A lower case load for CPS;
• A reduction in the need for foster care (and our tax dollars going there);
• A reduction in the incidence of legal proceedings and incarceration related to abuse and neglect cases (and our tax dollars going there);
• An improvement in the health and well being of our youth and family structure;
• Increased number of well adjusted youth attending school and entering our workforce.

Overall, child abuse prevention programs need to be recognized as a means to stem the increasing rate of abuse and neglect in our society. The physical health community has recognized that prevention programs for your physical well being will payoff for everyone in the long run; healthier lifestyles lead to healthier workers, leading to lower insurance claims and lower premiums, and overall lower operating costs and greater profits.

As a society we do not do enough to save our children and their families from the pain and heartache that is child abuse and neglect. But if we really are serious in making a dent in this problem, we have to be serious about going upstream and preventing it before it occurs.

David Marks
Plano, Texas
Advisory Board Member
Strengthening Families of North Texas


Please sign-up or RSVP for the McKinney Expressions with a Twist Art Workshop by this Friday, 4/8, at 10 am so that we have a head count for the lunch! Thanks!


Our guest speaker for this unique Art Workshop, April 9 in McKinney:
Jodi McKee, LPC-S - Art Therapy
Jodi McKee is a Board Certified Registered Art Therapist as well as a Licensed Professional Counselor Supervisor with over 15 years of experience. She received her undergraduate degree in Psychology from Austin College and her graduate degree in Marriage and Family Therapy/Clinical Art Therapy from Loyola Marymount University. Her passion is for children and families in crisis. Most of her professional work has been spent in hospital or shelter settings. She currently supports clients with eating disorders, and she lives in Plano with her teenage son.

Talley Williams - Communicating through Art
Talley Williams is an autodidactic entrepreneur and artist whose career spans a more than a quarter of a century. Talley relocated from the San Francisco Bay Area with her husband of 27yrs David Williams ,and two sons, Nicholas and Jordan 20+ years ago to Plano Texas. Mrs. Williams enjoyed a prosperous career in Dallas/Texas, as a proprietor, interior decorator and image consultant to professional men and women. She holds a patent, copyrights and a published art novella of her own unique works, and is currently seeking trademark. She is known for her ability to marry visual presentation and intention in unusual and bold ways
In 2010 Talley Williams underwent a miraculous experience which served as the catalyst for a career change. She experienced what is known as an OBE, gifting as a result the ability to paint and create vast artworks/ products of ancient culture and design.
In 2012-2015 Mrs. Williams brought her unique brand and background to the city Plano, as the Director/Gallerist for Plano Art Association. In that position she exercised full use of her skillset to, as she puts it, build bridges between communities using art as a platform.” Utilizing the arts Mrs. Williams expanded the city’s desire to promote diversity and represent itself as a city of excellence. During her leadership Plano Art Association’s membership grew four fold in the area cultural diversity and set precedence for suburban art groups.
Talley Williams received honors in 2014 from The Indie Festival as The Dallas Metro Plex’s most innovative and influencial contributor to the art’s community, first place in Plano’s Multicultural Exhibit, with a repurposed sculpture entitled EARTH. She is also a designer of wearable art and received 2nd prize in Plano Art Association’s jurored Grand Opening Art exhibit, a win seized by a memorable piece entitled “Cloak of Zion”’. In 2012 Mrs. Williams was a featured artist at the Mc Kinney Art Center of Dallas where she rendered a performance entitled, “Pangea: We Are All In This Together”. During the performance Mrs. Williams reformed a massive textile in response to the audience.
Talley has exhibited in a number local exhibits ,participated in solo and group exhibits to include the exclusive Dragon Street galleries where Talley was the premier artist at “1111”, Gallery of artist/gallerist Erich Trich.
Talley Williams’ artistry spans several genres to include 2D/3D, performance, design, mixed media, fragrance and home décor as well as art photography. Mrs. Williams is currently in preparations of a one woman exhibit/performance piece entitled
Blackswans Conversation with the Five Wise Brides: An Issue of Oil

Jennifer Siebert - Observation of Art

Seibert’s installations, drawings, paintings, and videos have been exhibited nationally and
internationally with solo and group exhibitions in the United States, France, Switzerland, Albania,
and Italy with her drawings, paintings, and installations. She has created two feature length
films and several short films, many of which were made possible through competitive research
fellowships and grants. She has attended residencies home and abroad and has won multiple
awards for her paintings, installations, and short films. Seibert is currently a Professor of Art at
Collin College, and was a Tenured Professor of Art at Eastern Michigan University for 9 years
before moving home to Texas to raise her family. She currently teaches painting and 2-dimensional design. Past courses have been drawing, installation, video, animation, and graduate seminars.
Through her abstractions of reality Seibert is trying to measure the distances between want,
loss, consumption, debt, beginnings, ends, progression, and decline.

Mayra Ozturk - Bachelor of Art in Psychology/Human Development and Early Childhood Disorders, M.S. - Power of Play

Still waiting for her bio info/only have her resume


Had to share this from a former Intern. Thank you Rebecca Littlefield, very powerful!

Unlike Americans, Europeans don't view recess as a waste of time.

Like ATTN: on Facebook.

For a full look at SBS's Dateline program referenced in our video, here is a link to "Kids Gone Wild," about Denmark's forest kindergartens:

This workshop is open to the public!
McKinney Expressions with a Twist Art Workshop

This workshop is open to the public!

With the support from City of McKinney, Strengthening Families of North Texas invite those who work, raise or come into contact with children to attend our first Art Workshop! Sessions covering: Power of Play, Art Therapy, Observation of Art and Communicating through Art; Participants will leave wit…

On April 9, 2016, with the support from City of McKinney, Strengthening Families of North Texas invite those who work, r...

On April 9, 2016, with the support from City of McKinney, Strengthening Families of North Texas invite those who work, raise or come into contact with children to our first Art Workshop!
With sessions covering: Power of Play, Art Therapy, Observation of Art and Communicating through Art; participants will leave with a better understanding how Art can build relationships, observation and communication skills.
This workshop provides 5 CEU's hours, required in Texas Child Care Minimum Standards:
• (a)
Fostering children’s self-esteem;
Positive interaction with children;
• (b) At least six clock hours of annual training must be in one or more of the following topics:
Child growth and development;
Guidance and discipline;
Age-appropriate curriculum;
Teacher-child interaction

• (c) At least one clock hour of annual training must focus on prevention, recognition, and reporting of child abuse and neglect, including:
Community organizations that have training programs available to child-care center staff members, children, and parents.

• (d)
Cultural diversity for children and families;
Professional development (for example, effective communication with families, time and stress management);
Observation and assessment;
This event costs $25.00 per person, lunch is included.
Sign up on our website through Paypal at, or email us at [email protected] for more details!


Based on what you may have read on the Texas foster care system...
Since 2009, Strengthening Families of North Texas is built on the concept that the best person to raise a child is that child's parent - not the state foster care system. So, we have to help people be better parents while also addressing the needs of the child.


We are proud to announce our McKinney Art Contest! With the support of City of McKinney, we encourage all 8th - 12th grade McKinney students to entry their artwork!

Submission Dates: March 21 – April 1, 2016
Delivered to 3415 Custer Road, Suite 140, Plano, Texas 75023; 2:00 pm – 5:00 p.m. or call in advance for delivery time at 972-867-9470
8th – 12th grade McKinney Texas students.
Students accepted include those enrolled in public, private, and parochial schools as well as those in accredited home schools. McKinney students are invited to create a drawing or painting based on the theme below.

• the state or fact of being diverse; difference; unlikeness:
• variety; multiformity.
• a point of difference.

Entry Rules:

1. One entry per person, proof of grade and residence of McKinney
2. Subject matter must relate to theme.
3. May be in BW or Color
4. Must not be under 8.5″ x 11″ in size
5. Must not be framed; border, display ready
6. Must be suitable for all ages
7. Must be original artwork
8. No digitally enhanced artwork
9. No names or initial can be visible on the artwork
10. Artwork must be the original work of the student entering the contest. Any medium is accepted. Examples include to the following:
o Watercolor
o Acrylic
o Oil
o Tempera
Dry Black/White Media
o Pencil/Lead
o Charcoal
o Graphite
Dry Colored Media
o Pastel
o Colored Pencil
o Crayon

By grades: 8th – 9th 10th – 12th
Each category will have a First, Second and Third place winner.
8th – 9th grade 10th – 12th grade
1st Prize $75 gift card $100 gift card
2nd Prize $50 gift card $75 gift card
3rd Prize $25 gift card $50 gift card
Judging Criteria:
• Exhibits creativity
• Composition
• Elements of Art
• Craftsmanship
• Diversity Message content
Please note:
All artwork submitted will be displayed April 9, 2016 at the McKinney Expression with a Twist workshop, held at the McKinney Boyd High School. Art may be picked up between 3:00 p.m. – 4:00 pm that same day.

This event is sponsored by the City of McKinney, Texas!


Last night was awesome on so many levels! Pizza and salad never tasted so good Kerry Davis! Topped off with the delicious cream cheese filled chocolate cake and fabulous cream cheese filled chocolate dipped strawberries by Roberta Lucas!


Our "Strengthening Families" parenting classes begin Monday, January 25 and continue until March 28, 2016! Even if you work with/around children this is a great way to earn CU's! These classes are free thanks to generosity of Junior League of Collin County, City of Plano, Plano West Rotary, Plano Early Lions Club and many individuals! This class can be the start of a new beginning for many families, share this information or call us for more details at 972-867-9470!
Take a break on Mondays, we provide dinner at 6:00 p.m. and childcare during class time, 6:30 - 8:00 pm.
These classes are held at 3405 Custer Road, Plano at the Hope Community Church. We also thank Hope Community Church for the use of the building!



We are happy to send you holiday joy, the toys are being set up now as I type!

Parents you will be able to come pick up your toys tomorrow, Friday and Saturday from 9 am to 6:30 pm. Toys are re-stocked each night with new inventory.

We are located this year at Evolution Academy, 1099 Sherman Street, Sherman and Buckingham, in Richardson.

Merry Christmas

KVCE Radio Listen Live

This Thursday morning, 6 am, you can hear live DFW Toys for Tots Marine Sgt. Otero talk about Toys for Tots! Tune in and catch the details on how this came about and how the Marine Corps has stepped up in the community! For instance, did you know DFW, which includes Collin County, is the largest nationwide Toys for Tots distributor?
Tune in to AM620 or stream live from or on your smartphone on the tune in app!
So very proud to be a part of this worldwide organization!

Today your $25 donation can make a huge difference!

Today your $25 donation can make a huge difference!

North Texas Giving Day is the nation’s largest community-wide online giving event, raising more than $86 million for the North Texas community since 2009. Give to your favorite nonprofits on Sept. 17 from 6am – Midnight.

LARGE organizations get donations all year long. TODAY is a day for our SMALL, community organization to be a focus! And...

LARGE organizations get donations all year long. TODAY is a day for our SMALL, community organization to be a focus! And, to DOUBLE our donations! Every dollar we receive will be matched! PLEASE donate to us TODAY! As we work daily to give families the tools they need to grow and become strong!

North Texas Giving Day is the nation’s largest community-wide online giving event, raising more than $86 million for the North Texas community since 2009. Give to your favorite nonprofits on Sept. 17 from 6am – Midnight.

We are so excited planning and organizing our 2016 "McKinney with a Twist" Art contest and Workshop!  Beginning in Janua...

We are so excited planning and organizing our 2016 "McKinney with a Twist" Art contest and Workshop! Beginning in January, rules and details will be announced for McKinney residents, ages 8-18! All art will be on public display at the Workshop scheduled in April. The workshop will include topics "Art Therapy" "Art of Observation" "Communication through Art" and "Play Therapy"! Because CEU's will be earned attending this event, we expect a huge turnout! Thank you City of McKinney for your support!
Here is just a few of the Frisco contestants from 2011 that were on display at our "Under the Stars" held at Bonnie Ruth's Cafe!


3415 Custer Rd
Plano, TX

General information

Strengthening Families of North Texas provides an unique blend of therapeutic early childhood services and comprehensive family support, including alcohol & drug recovery support services that empowers vulnerable families and helps stop the vicious cycle of child abuse and neglect.


(972) 867-9470


Strengthening Families of North Texas currently provides:
Parent education classes
Home visits
Individualized case coordinators
Child development assessments and screenings
Mental health assessments
Counseling services for children and families
Individual skills development
Community resource referral

Strengthening Families of North Texas future provisions:
Therapeutic childcare (the first such facility in the state)
Play therapy
Alcohol and drug recovery support services


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Are you guys still around?