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Heart & Shield: A Program to End Family Violence in Nevada

Nevada’s Heart & Shield (H&S) creates an environment for child and adult survivors of intimate partner violence (IPV) to obtain skills and resources necessary to break the cycle of IPV. Participants attend a 9-week session and monthly Family Night Out activities. Each meeting includes a healthy meal, nutrition tips, violence prevention tips for each age group, and a family activity that reinforces skills taught. Participants are divided into age groups: parents, children ages birth to 8, youth 9 to 13, and teens 14 to 18. Educational topics for parents focus on communication, emotion identification and regulation, problem-solving, typical child development and development affected by family violence, parenting styles, guidance and discipline, healthy relationships, and strengthening families. Children, youth, and teen topics teach communication, emotion identification and regulation, problem-solving, friendship skills, healthy relationships, social/emotional skills, and strengthening families.

In 2017, 39 adults and 72 youth participated in the program. Faculty and staff delivered presentations to statewide and national stakeholders for sustainability. More than 40 local presentations targeted community partners to increase their awareness of IPV and its effects on children and adults, increasing program referrals and ways to collaborate to sustain the program.

NIFA supports this outreach and educational effort through the Children, Youth and Families at Risk (CYFAR) Program.

To learn more about the Heart & Shield and other success stories, please view the 2017 CYFAR Annual Report.

Want to read about more impacts like this? Check out Fresh from the Field, a weekly bulletin showcasing transformative impacts made by grantees funded by NIFA.

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