Family Education and Support Services (FESS) is a private, non-profit 501(c)(3) agency governed by a volunteer Board of Directors representing the diverse sectors of the populations we serve. Originally incorporated in 1984, the organization was granted tax-exempt status in 2000.
Our mission is “To inspire healthy child development through the provision of quality family support services.”
We operate in accordance with generally accepted accounting principles. We are audited annually by a reputable firm, Norman R Smith & Associates of Olympia, and have experienced positive financial reviews. We have also successfully completed audit reviews at the County, State and Federal levels. Family Education and Support Services has a longstanding record of successful grant project management.
We believe that strong families begin at home and that by strengthening families, we help to create a thriving community. We support families by offering a variety of parent and caregiver education and support programs in the South Puget Sound area including Thurston, Mason, Lewis and Pierce Counties. Our services are targeted to those who care for children including parents, relative caregivers, foster parents, early childhood educators, community partners, and others. We also offer direct services to children.
Programs offered through our agency are often implemented in collaboration with community partners. We have a variety of family enrichment activities, parent support programs, and parent trainings provided each month. Examples include communication skills for divorcing parents; a 12-week course for developing fathering skills; a 12-week program for mothers with drug and alcohol challenges; monthly programs for relatives who are raising children; parenting classes; and even Zumba for families! Our programs also provide general skill building for parents/caregivers offering help with communication, stress management, and child development.
We recognize that caring for a child can be the most rewarding, but also the most challenging, task for every parent or caregiver. Our services help guide caregivers through the tough times, and we appreciate the opportunity to celebrate the many successes. We offer parenting/caregiver classes in collaboration with schools, faith partners, governmental agencies, and other non-profit organizations. We provide on-going support groups for any parent/caregiver who wishes to join with others, enjoy a cup of coffee, and a conversation about parenting. We also offer evidence based parent/caregiver education curriculums intended to support parents in raising healthy children.
Family Education and Support Services (FESS) also provides intensive classes for parents or caregivers who are “system involved.” Parents/caregivers may be referred for specific classes such as “The Impact of Domestic Violence on Children”, or be referred for other intensive classes by Child Protective Services, Family Court, Case Managers, or through a Guardian Ad Litem or CASA worker. Evidence-based curriculums help parents/caregivers learn about non abusive discipline and guidance techniques, strategies to prevent addiction, methods for increased communication, child development and expectations, and other strategies for healthy family management.
We also offer support and training for early childhood professionals, foster parents and/or relative care givers who are caring for a child in “Out of Home” care. Our LIFELINE support group for foster parents is held monthly at the Hands On Children’s Museum and we have Kinship Caregiver support and training programs available nearly every week. We also offer bi-lingual services. Most of our training and support programs include on-site child care, and some services include a concurrent children’s program that engages youth in learning lessons that coincide with the adult topics presented.
Thank you for showing an interest in our organization. Please contact us @360-754-7629 for further information on programs, volunteering or donating. We look forward to hearing from you.