Our first Family Well-Being Index
Families are the building blocks of our community. They are key to the health of our society. When families are safe and strong, communities are supportive and resilient. In order for families to thrive, parents and children need the support of their communities, whether that support comes in the form of a meal from a neighbor or a counseling session with a therapist.
Knowing that families and communities in Minnesota have faced wave after wave of challenges in recent years, we created this report with the goals of understanding how Minnesota families are doing and highlighting stories of how community supports are strengthening family wellbeing. What we found was that while there is a lot of data available about families’ needs and risk factors, there is little data about the strengths that exist within our families and communities.
At FamilyWise, we approach all of our work through a strengths-based lens that lifts up the wisdom of families and communities. We know that we can’t always change risk factors (like a family’s past traumas), but we can change protective factors (like a family’s ability to ask for and receive help).
Every day we see the resourcefulness and resilience of families, and yet it is hard to find statewide data to tell that story. With this first annual Family Wellbeing Index Report, we want to encourage dialogue about the need for better measurement of strengths-based levers of family wellbeing in our state.