Melissa Robinson, Program Manager for Family & Children’s Services’ Family Support/Parent Involvement, recently met requirements at the FDC Instructors Institute to be a certified instructor to co-lead trainings in Oklahoma for the National Family Development Credential (FDC) Program.
“I will now not only train Family & Children’s Services staff, but others in the state of Oklahoma in the Head Start and Early Childhood Development areas as family development specialists and later advisors,” Melissa said. “This program helps them achieve their staff qualifications.”
The FDC program collaborates with agencies to teach family workers how to coach families to set and reach their goals for healthy self-reliance. Initially based on Cornell University research, the interagency FDC program works is in many states throughout the nation, teaching and credentialing frontline workers from public, private and non-profit service systems (e.g., home visitors, case managers, family resource center workers, community health workers).
To earn the FDC, front-line workers take 90 hours of classes based on Empowerment Skills for Family Workers (3rd edition, Forest 2015), complete a portfolio documenting their ability to apply these concepts and skills, and pass a standardized exam. Since the first FDC credentials were issued by Cornell’s School of Continuing Education in 1997, more than 12,000 front-line workers nationally have earned the FDC through affiliated systems in 46 other states.
Robinson will conduct her first training institute sometime in 2021 under the guidance of Dr. Amanda W. Harrist, Professor, Human Development & Family Science at Oklahoma State University.
About The Family Development Credential
The Family Development Credential emerged in 1994 from a research-policy collaborative between the Cornell University College of Human Ecology’s Department of Human Development, New York State’s Council on Children and Families, New York State Department of State, and the New York City Dept. of Youth and Community Development, with support from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. The initiative was directed by Dr. Claire Forest. In 2010, Dr. Forest, who remains director, moved the Family Development Credential Program to the University of Connecticut. The official FDC credential is issued by the Center for Culture, Health & Human Development.