As defined by Family Support America, Family Support is all of the following:
Family Support is based on the premise that the primary responsibility for the development and well-being of children lies within the family, and that all segments of society must support families as they raise their children. Family Support services include a broad array of activities designed to strengthen families, helping parents to raise their children successfully, become self-sufficient, and take an active role in their communities.
“Family” includes those who share responsibility for raising a child to adulthood. A family consists of at least one adult and one child, age 0-18, who are related biologically, emotionally, or legally. Families may be comprised of one parent, two parents, grandparents, foster parents, legal guardians, or from a need for mutual support. (Adapted from San Francisco Citywide Strategic Plan for Supporting Families – San Francisco Starting Points Initiative, September 2003.)
The Family Support Principles developed by Family Support America in 1996 guide and frame the Family Support field.
The following documents from the San Francisco Starting Points Initiative, which closed in 2003, provide historical data about San Francisco families, Family Support services, and the background context for the founding of the San Francisco Family Support Network.
Family Resource Centers (FRCs) are the most typical kind of Family Support programs. This booklet developed by the State of California explains their history, key characteristics, activities, and functions.here.