ACT/Parents Raising Safe Kids Program

Based on research that indicates that effective parenting is a critical factor to prevent youth behavior problems, the APA created and launched ACT/Parents Raising Safe Kids, the ACT 8-week program. The program focuses primarily on educating parents and other adults who raise and care for young children to create early environments that protect them from violence.

The ACT/Parents Raising Safe Kids program focuses on parents and other adults raising young children. It is based on research demonstrating that intervening early in life and developing effective parenting skills are critical ways to prevent violence in the lives of children.

The program is designed to be delivered by trained ACT Facilitators, professionals who work for organizations and agencies that provide educational, social and/or mental health services to families and children; those who are college professors, advocates and others.

Parents Raising Safe Kids Curriculum

Parents Raising Safe Kids provides a standardized program to ensure consistency and fidelity in the delivery and the outcome evaluation. Based on the ACT program original materials, the Parents Raising Safe Kids curriculum organizes the program into eight, 2-hour sessions for parents and other adults raising young children.

The purpose is to help parents understand that:

  • What children are capable of understanding and doing changes with age and stages of development;

  • Children learn from imitation and observation and what adults say and do to children or in front of them can have an impact on their development;

  • Early experiences such as involvement with violence have a long-lasting impact on children;

  • Violence can be prevented if they start early;

  • It is important to get involved in the schools and community to prevent violence.

The program also teaches parents positive skills and strategies to use with and model for children. They include:

  • Dealing with children's difficult behaviors with developmentally appropriate responses;

  • Controlling their own anger;

  • Helping children control their anger;

  • Teaching children how to resolve conflicts without using violence;

  • Using positive discipline methods that fit the children's age; and 

  • Reducing the influence of media violence on children.

Parents Raising Safe Kids Materials

Materials developed for the program include:

The ACT Facilitator Kit is available in hard copy and on CD ROM.  The kit is available in both English and Spanish and includes:

  • Homework sheets and PowerPoint slides;

  • One of each of the ACT brochures;

  • The ACT TV PSA CD; and

  • Flyers. 

The ACT Parent Handbook includes sets of fact sheets with information on children's typical problem behaviors and outlines basic child development information. The handbook is available in English and in Spanish and includes handouts on:

  • Anger management;

  • Positive discipline;

  • Media literacy; and

  • Positive ways to resolve conflicts.