The Scranton PROSPER Team, in collaboration with community schools, offers both an in-school and a family-focused program. Unlike other agencies and organizations, the PROSPER Team supports the delivery of programs designed to promote skills that are relevant and meant to be beneficial to all youth and families, not just those “at risk.” By implementing both a school and a family program, youth are supported in the two most important domains of their lives, home and school.
LifeSkills Training is delivered to 6th-8th grade students by Scranton health teachers. This program focuses on three critical skill development areas that research has shown can substantially reduce the likelihood of high-risk behaviors. Areas of focus include drug resistance skills, personal self-management skills, and general social skills. LifeSkills Training is taught throughout the school year.
The Strengthening Families Program: For Parents and Youth 10-14 (SFP: 10-14) is offered annually to 6th graders and their parents. This program features a concurrent parent-only and youth-only hour long segment, followed by an hour long joint family segment. Interactive sessions include role playing, discussions, learning games and family projects. The SFP: 10-14 is taught to a group of 8 to 13 families over a period of seven weeks. The Scranton PROSPER Team offers SFP: 10-14 on Sundays from 3:00 – 5:30 p.m. and on a week night from 5:30 – 8:00 p.m. in the fall during October – November. It is also offered in the winter from February – April on the same nights. Free meals, child care and transportation assistance (if needed) is included.
These programs have been carefully selected based on compelling scientific evidence that they are effective for helping youth lead successful lives. To ensure that these programs are implemented as designed year after year, the PROSPER Team receives guidance from Penn State Extension and prevention researchers at PSU’s Prevention Research Center.