Training in Strengthening Families

The SFP training is a required element for SFP group leaders (facilitator) and Site Coordinators. In some communities, it is also a requirement for referral agents (please contact your local area for their policies – see directory here)

Training Content  

Over 2 days, participants will be briefed on the background, theory, evidence and application of SFP in Ireland. On the second day, participants will have the opportunity to see and experience SFP in action – role playing facilitation from selected weeks. The training should be delivered only by official SFP Trainers / Master Trainers (listed here). If you wish to organise a training please contact the National SFP Council.  

Learn more about becoming a facilitator.

Becoming a Facilitator / Site Coordinator

The Facilitators primary role is to deliver the Strengthening Families Programme in class-based sessions over 14/15 weeks, in line with the manual and fidelity guidelines, to parents and/or teen/child. An Assistant Facilitator is a support facilitator to the two Co-Facilitators and the SFP process in each of the Teen/childs group. The Assistant Facilitator may also be asked to fill in for a Facilitator, in any of the group sessions, where a Facilitator may be unable to attend.  A Floater is available every SFP evening for other supports that may be necessary, including general set up for the evening, welcoming families, facilitation needs as they arise, and is available to family members who may need to opt out of sessions throughout the evening.

The Site Coordinator is the main weekly link throughout the duration of the programme – between families attending the programme, facilitators delivering the programme, and referral agents who support the families. The Site Coordinator is present at all sessions of SFP and plays a central role in the delivery and implementation of SFP. The role demands the ability to ultimately lead and support a team of facilitators with confidence, energy and enthusiasm and also support families before, during and after the programme.

General Criteria Guidelines:

  1. Trained in SFP (2 days).
  2. Comfortable and experienced working with groups (both adults and/or teen/child).
  3. Garda Vetted & trained and familiar with Children First guidelines.
  4. Preferably support from Line Manager to participate. In the case of volunteers, supported by a volunteering body.
  5. Receive some form of supervision by their agency.
  6. Commits to the full implementation of the SFP term (ie 14/15 weeks).
  7. Contributes to evaluations of the programme.


Volunteers: A volunteer may be able to apply to support SFP in one of the above roles. Please contact your local SFP Site Coordinator for further opportunities and information.