By Strengthening Their Relationship, Parents Can Improve Outcomes for Children

By Giving List Staff   |   February 14, 2023

A Valentine’s Day Message from Family Service Agency

“Strengthening your relationship can not only improve your personal happiness, but improve the overall wellbeing of the family,” said Alison Espínola, Family Service Agency’s Health & Human Services (HHS) Grant Manager. “Research shows that children are safer, healthier, and more likely to thrive when adults in their lives have healthy relationships—whether or not they are married or romantically involved.”

Maintaining any relationship requires on-going effort. The good news is that there are tools available to help couples achieve their goals in relationships and with their family.

Over time, Martha and Mario felt they were losing sight of their friendship and mutual support for their family. They were beginning to see negative communication patterns develop.

To reaffirm their commitment, Martha and Mario recently completed FSA’s Connected Couple, Connected Families program. They built on their existing strengths to add critical life and relationship skills to help them create safer, more stable relationships, and a better home environment for their 10-year-old son. Strengthening their relationship has also strengthen their relationship with their child.

“I told my husband that life is about more than work and sleep,” said Martha. “Now, my husband spends more time with me and definitely makes more of an effort to play and spend time with our son.”

“I feel more connected to my family,” said Mario. “My son, and my wife, are happier because we gained the skills to talk out whatever issues arise as a family. We’ve also made it a habit to spend time together.”

The 10-session Connected Couple, Connected Families program is offered throughout Santa Barbara County at no cost, thanks to funding from HHS.  Couples can participate in online workshops from their own home, or in-person in their local community. Classes are taught in Spanish or English.

To learn more about Family Service Agency’s Connected Couple, Connected Families program, including a list of upcoming classes, visit or call Alison Espínola at (805) 450-1520.


Family Service Agency

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(805) 965-1001 ext. 1268
Director of Advancement: Jan Campbell


Our mission is to strengthen and advocate for families and individuals of all ages and diversities, helping to create and preserve a healthy community.

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Your services provided me something that I was beginning to feel was missing in my life. Being interconnected with so many other local organizations, you are providing a safety net for me. Thank you.
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Flexible Funding helps bridge the gaps for those in need. Here’s how you can help:

$100 – Buys a week’s worth of groceries for a family of four.
$250 – Helps a family enroll in health insurance and access other critical services in Family Service Agency’s countywide Family Resource Centers.
$500 – Provides behavioral health support for students, improving academics and school attendance.
$1,000 – Pays for three months of mental health counseling for a senior or caregiver.

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