Promoting First Relationships (PFR) is a training program designed for caregivers of children ages 0-5, part of the University of Washington’s Parent-Child Relationship Programs at the Barnard Center. The program is dedicated to promoting children’s social-emotional development through responsive, nurturing caregiver-child relationships. Features of PFR include: (1) Video recording caregiver-child interactions to provide insight into real-life situations and help caregiver reflect on underlying needs of child; (2) Giving positive and instructive feedback that builds caregivers’ competence; (3) Focusing on deeper emotional feelings and needs underlying children’s distress and behaviors; and (4) Using handouts and homework to enhance parent insight and learning about child social and emotional development, needs and concerns.

PFR can be conducted individually or in groups of 6 to 8 caregiver dyads. PFR is provided 1 hour per week for 10 weeks, and can be conducted in various settings including family home, outpatient clinic, community-based agency, group/residential care, public child welfare agency, school, or virtual. PFR has materials in English, Somali, and Spanish.

Improve caregiver-child interactions and learn how to build a positive, contingent, and mutually reinforcing relationship between caregiver and child; Learn about children’s social emotional needs and increase capacity to understand child’s needs and cues; Increase trust and security in caregiver-child relationship; Increase competence and confidence in parenting; Help child increase their competence and confidence; Learn how to regulate emotion and to self-reflect; Help child learn how to regulate emotion; Understand and learn how to address challenging behaviors with child.