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“This training and concept is huge. Understanding why makes all the difference.  You can’t fix anything until you understand the problem!”


 - Austin Foster Parent

Family Minds


  How to Strengthen your Relationship while Helping your Child Cope



Improving mentalizing skills can be very beneficial for foster parents, as they frequently deal with children who come into their home with challenging behaviors, attachment issues and negative internal working models of relationships.  This intervention can result in:


Parents that are less likely to jump to conclusions about their foster children’s negative behaviors


Parents that can see the deeper meaning behind their child’s behavior, which enables them to problem solve those issues more successfully which leads to more meaningful and successful relationships with their foster children


Parents that are more likely to interact with their children in a more sensitive and therapeutic manner; increasing secure attachment


Less parental stress, reduced placement breakdowns and improved mental health of foster children





This psycho-educational training intervention was developed specifically for foster and adoptive parents and was designed to be short-term and practical.  It was evaluated as part of Dr. Adkins' dissertation project at University College London and the Anna Freud Center and results indicate this intervention can increase parent's reflective capacities and lower parenting stress.  It is now a promising practice and is trauma informed!



Key Features


  • 3 separate trainings of about 3 hours each spread out over 6 weeks - can be adapted

  • Psycho-educational; can be taught to and given by social workers

  • Cost effective and short-term

  • Designed to increase parent’s knowledge and ability to mentalize and be reflective

  • Helps parents go deeper in understanding the thoughts, feelings and behaviors of their children, as well as themselves

  • Content is cumulative and includes info on trauma, attachment and mentalization

  • Includes slides, handouts, videos, discussions, classroom activities and at-home activities


Family Minds is also available to those professionals who would like to deliver this to parents!  This "train the facilitator" model is shorter (2 days) and includes many instructor tips, opportunities for live practice, and a complete training manual.

Family Minds Facilitator Training has successfully been delivered to a group of therapists in Australia, Canada and Austin, Texas.  In November 2019, I will be in France, delivering it to a group of mental health professionals at The University of Versailles. 

Presently, this training must be requested by a group in advance. Cost is $600 per person, with a group minimum of 5. Travel costs must be covered as well, (and might be minimized if I am in your area for travel). Supervision for full certification can also be requested, which is an additional fee. Ask about discounts for foster/adoption agencies.

Please contact Tina Adkins for details:


Like visuals? Take a look at these infographs!


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