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Family Center Inc. (d.b.a. Parenting Journey)

 366 Somerville Avenue
 Somerville, MA 02143
[P] (617) 628-8815 x 216
[F] (617) 625-2351
Katie Smith
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 Printable Profile (Summary / Full)
EIN 04-2771011

LAST UPDATED: 05/01/2019
Organization DBA Parenting Journey
Former Names The Family Center (2014)
Organization received a competitive grant from the Boston Foundation in the past five years Yes



Mission StatementMORE »

Parenting Journey’s mission is to create safer, more resilient families by supporting them in developing the inner strengths, life skills, and networks of resources they need to succeed.

Mission Statement

Parenting Journey’s mission is to create safer, more resilient families by supporting them in developing the inner strengths, life skills, and networks of resources they need to succeed.

FinancialsMORE »

Fiscal Year July 01, 2017 to June 30, 2018
Projected Income $2,863,986.00
Projected Expense $2,863,986.00

ProgramsMORE »

  • Parenting Programs
  • Professional Training

Revenue vs. Expense ($000s)

Expense Breakdown 2017 (%)

Expense Breakdown 2016 (%)

Expense Breakdown 2015 (%)

For more details regarding the organization's financial information, select the financial tab and review available comments.


Mission Statement

Parenting Journey’s mission is to create safer, more resilient families by supporting them in developing the inner strengths, life skills, and networks of resources they need to succeed.

Background Statement

Parenting Journey (PJ), a national family services nonprofit headquartered in MA, is working towards the day when every family has what they need to thrive and succeed. Rooted in the belief that all parents want what is best for their children, PJ recognizes that some parents cannot reach their full potential because of systemic injustices. In response to intergenerational trauma caused by racism and poverty, PJ uses an interdisciplinary approach to effect change in family systems, institutional systems, and governmental systems to uplift families.

Research shows that individuals who participate in PJ’s parenting programs improve in several key areas that are known to promote positive outcomes for the whole family. However, while PJ’s evidence-based programs help parents develop coping mechanisms for the challenges they face, the systemic barriers mentioned above still present significant obstacles to many families. For this reason, PJ works within institutional systems to shift and enhance attitudes and practices, and advocates for policies that uplift all families to create change in governmental systems. By combining its direct-service programs with a systemic approach, PJ offers a unique model to accelerate outcomes for families.

Impact Statement

Parenting Journey FY18 Accomplishments:

  1. Delivered evidence-based parenting programs to 231 parents and caregivers, including the newly revised Sober Parenting Journey and Parenting Journey for Fathers curricula. 
  2. Trained 314 social service professionals to offer its evidence-based programs at their own agencies and uphold the philosophy that all parents have inherent strengths and should be treated in a consistently supportive and reflective way.
  3. Launched the Parent Advisory Council, a diverse team of PJ program graduates who lead efforts among PJ’s parents, staff, board, and supporters to fight for policies that promote equity.
  4. Launched two-generation partnerships with allied nonprofits to improve outcomes for the whole family.
  5. Revised existing evaluation tools to make them more accessible to participants, and adopted new ones to better understand the influence of its programs and partnerships.
Parenting Journey FY19 Goals:
  1. Impact at least 240 participants in parenting programs at headquarters and partner sites.
  2. Train at least 393 social service professionals in the PJ model.
  3. Execute community partnerships with nonprofit allies in a two-generation model.
  4. Use baseline data collected through new evaluation methods to inform goals for FY20.
  5. Advance policy goals set forth by PJ’s Parent Advisory Council in 3 municipalities.

Needs Statement

Parents need access to resources to provide nurturing care to their children. PJ has expanded upon its direct service work in recent years to include collaborative two-generational partnerships and policy work to tackle the systemic barriers that affect families. There are many needs associated with expanding the scope of work, including:
  1. Financial Support: PJ's support for families is only possible through the generosity of funders who share a commitment to PJ's vision.
  2. Donor Diversification: As the organization grows, PJ is working to build a more diverse pool of funding sources to ensure the sustainability of the organization.
  3. Staff Capacity: The substantial increase in the scope of work comes with a need for expanded staff capacity to provide both programmatic and administrative support for PJ's programs, operations, finance, evaluation, communications, policy, and development teams.
  4. Systems and Infrastructure: The organization has adopted various new technology systems to allow for the capture of outcomes and other relevant data, which requires a lot of time to build expertise.

CEO Statement

Board Chair Statement

Founder Anne Peretz’s passion for empowering parents moved me from the first time I met her. Her drive to help at-risk parents  improve their lives for the benefit of their children was not only tangible but infectious. So it wasn’t long before I become involved with Parenting Journey - supporting the organization, then joining the board in 2007, and serving as Board Chair since the summer of 2013.

My own circumstances inform my involvement at Parenting Journey. I realize that my professional success has afforded me the opportunity to raise my children in an enriching, safe community, enabling them to flourish socially, emotionally, and academically. I also understand that Parenting Journey’s target demographic - low-income and/or immigrant parents - are not only coping with the stress inherent with being a parent, but additional stressors as well affecting their ability to be the loving, capable parent they want to be.

I believe that all parents should be able to fully realize their desire to be caring, successful parents and Parenting Journey provides people with the opportunity to do so. Our twelve-week curriculum provides at-risk parents with the support system they need to build their confidence, strengthen their communication skills, execute new parenting practices, and discover the importance of self-care.  For many of these parents, this is the first time that they’ve had to fully deal with lingering events from their past that might be affecting their current relationships. It also might be the first time that they’ve even heard of the term self-care and its importance to being an effective person, not to mention parent.  By having our parents use their latent strengths to address these concepts, they emerge from our programs as the considerate, competent parents they want to be.

Executive Director Maury Peterson has been a strong revitalizing force for the organization.  She joined us in October 2013. She has brought such a focused energy to the organization, using her past corporate and wide-ranging nonprofit experience to swiftly identify Parenting Journey’s strengths to leverage as we continue to expand. She has an ambitious vision for how Parenting Journey will continue to help vulnerable children by focusing first on their parents. I am honored to support this effort.

Bern Haan, Board Chair

Geographic Area Served

In a specific U.S. city, cities, state(s) and/or region.

PJ's direct service parenting programs are available at PJ's Somerville, MA headquarters and at over 500 partner agencies across the country and abroad. 

Organization Categories

  1. Human Services - Family Services
  2. Education - Parent & Teacher Groups
  3. -

Independent research has been conducted on this organization's theory of change or on the effectiveness of this organization's program(s)



Parenting Programs


  • Parenting Journey I: The Parenting Journey I (PJ1) curriculum is the foundation of all PJ programming. PJ1 works with parents to identify and utilize their strengths, support their children, build nurturing family relationships, increase self-care practices, raise awareness of factors that influence parenting styles, and decrease social isolation.
  • Parenting Journey II works with graduates of other PJ programs to apply their new insight and skills towards future goals. Participants utilize practical tips, tools, and mutual support to develop a concrete action plan to achieve the goals they’ve identified for themselves and their families.

  • Parenting Journey for Fathers offers a setting which creates unique support and comfort among fathers and father-figures. This year, PJ piloted a new curriculum for the group that focuses on the messages participants receive about fatherhood and masculinity and coaches them to identify their own definition of being a nurturing father.

  • Parenting in America encourages immigrant parents and caregivers to honor their cultural heritage while also developing new culturally responsive parenting practices and strategies. Participants graduate from the program feeling empowered to face immigration challenges that affect them as individuals and as parents.

  • Sober Parenting Journey allows parents recovering from addiction to address potential relapse triggers and strengthen their commitment to being a sober parent. Through exploring past dynamics and identifying personal strengths, participants build confidence in their recovery and develop strategies to nurture themselves and their families.

Budget  554,709
Category  Human Services, General/Other Family-Based Services
Population Served Families
Program Short-Term Success 
According to the results of a rigorous research study completed in 2017, PJ program participants significantly decreased their stress levels, improved their utilization of social networks, and achieved greater insight into their learned parenting behavior when compared to their peers. Ultimately, these parents improved in factors that are known to strengthen families and promote well-being.
The above results were found using an internally developed scale based on the Strengthening Families Protective Factors Framework. To switch to an externally validated and more widely-used evaluation tool that can be compared to other programs, PJ recently adopted the Quality of Life Scale developed the World Health Organization to evaluate outcomes for its parenting programs. The pilot year for this process is currently underway.
Program Long-Term Success 


PJ has invested heavily in strengthening its data collection and evaluation process throughout the last year, and has just begun to measure the long-term impact of its in-house parenting groups by administering the Quality of Life Scale three, six, and nine months after the group ends, along with questions from the registration form regarding demographics, individual history, and socioeconomic status. This will provide baseline data to determine whether PJ can feasibly collect long-term data; see if the pre-post effects persist over time; identify changes in socioeconomic status following participation in the program; and measure how much contact, time, and money it takes to engage participants with follow-up and collect this data.
Program Success Monitored By 

Program effectiveness in the 2017 impact study was measured using the Parenting Journey Scale, which was developed in partnership with the Institute for Community Health (ICH), an independent, nationally renowned research and evaluation organization. The scale measured seven domains known to be associated with positive parenting practices: hope and optimism, insight, identifying personal goals, self-efficacy, ability to self-nurture, self-awareness, and ability to develop social networks.

The Quality of Life Scale developed by the World Health Organization addresses six domains: physical health, psychological health, level of independence, social relationships, environment, and spirituality.
Examples of Program Success 

Nine years of independent evaluation conducted by the ICH clearly demonstrates the impact of our program. Results show that there are statistically significant improvements in parents and caregivers who complete Parenting Journey programs. The results offer solid evidence of the success of our innovative approach. For example, graduates of our programs report:

  • A positive change in their relationships with other people in general (90%).
  • A transition from negative feelings to positive feelings about life and themselves (86%).
  • A positive change in their relationship with their children (86%).

Client Testimonial

“The wealth of information, life skills and parenting skills that I learned at Parenting Journey are things that I will take with me for the rest of my life. My reason for being on the Parenting Advisory Council is so that I can help spread the message and help to impact someone else's life as mine has been."

- Jefly Louis, graduate of Parenting Journey I and II, Parent Advisory Council Member, and Parenting Journey Board Member

Professional Training

Facilitator Training 
PJ offers training for social service professionals to learn how to deliver PJ’s innovative programs independently at their agencies. Training in each curriculum is delivered over five days, and is a full 40 hours of experiential learning that mirrors the 12- to 14-week parent programming. Upon graduating, professionals can earn up to 30 CEUs and are certified to replicate the program at their agencies, with access to materials and technical support from PJ as needed. Participants are also trained to uphold the philosophy that all parents have inherent strengths and should be treated in a consistently supportive and reflective way. PJ’s facilitator training encourages the next generation of nonprofit professionals to view families through an asset-based and empathetic lens. Facilitator training is offered for Parenting Journey I, Parenting Journey II, Parenting Journey for Fathers, Parenting in America, and Sober Parenting Journey.
PJ Community
This 1.5-day professional development program draws upon techniques from the facilitator trainings to encourage staff at all levels to adopt a strengths-based and empathetic approach and interact with families and their colleagues in a supportive and reflective way. The training prepares all staff inside partner agencies to to ensure that families are receiving consistent communication across all the services they access.
Budget  $906,268.00
Category  Human Services, General/Other Family-Based Services
Population Served General/Unspecified
Program Short-Term Success 
In addition to learning how to replicate the program, the primary goals for professionals who participate in PJ’s facilitator trainings are to improve their ability to therapeutically engage with clients, increase their sense of professional and personal efficacy, and develop self-awareness and self-care practices. As a result, participants will increase job satisfaction, decrease stress levels, and interact with families and colleagues in a consistently supportive and reflective way.
Program Long-Term Success 

Through its facilitator and organizational culture training, PJ is coaching the next generation of human service providers to uphold PJ’s beliefs and philosophies and spread them to other agencies, including the involvement of constituents in the leadership of the organization and the commitment to racial equity.

Program Success Monitored By 

PJ is piloting new outcomes measurement tools for all its training programs this year.

Examples of Program Success 
More than 1,800 human service professionals have graduated from the facilitator training program, and Parenting Journey programs have been replicated in nearly 500 locations across the U.S. and can be found in communities across MA, NY, Washington, DC, FL…and more. 
 “Kingsbridge Heights Community Center has been connected with Parenting Journey for several years. This partnership has been incredibly beneficial for our entire agency – our clients and our staff have been greatly impacted. Having gone through the facilitator training myself, I can personally attest to the benefit the Parenting Journey Facilitator Training offers to each human service professional. Over the years, fifteen Kingsbridge Heights employees have completed the facilitator training. We have fully integrated Parenting Journey groups into our service array, which has positively impacted many of our clients."  Lori Spector, Associate Executive Director, Kingsbridge Community Center

CEO/Executive Director/Board Comments



CEO/Executive Director Mr. Imari Paris Jeffries MEd, MA
CEO Term Start Jan 2017
CEO Email
CEO Experience Imari joined the Parenting Journey team in February 2017. He brings a wealth of experience from the nonprofit management, community activism, education reform, and social justice sectors to his role as Executive Director. Previously, he was Chief Executive Officer of Italian Home, a behavioral health organization in Boston. He also served as COO of Jumpstart, a national early education organization and interim CEO of Boston Rising, an anti-poverty initiative. Imari has a strong commitment to giving back and serves as a Trustee of The University of Massachusetts System and was recently appointed by Governor Baker to the Black Advisory Commission. A member of the Appalachian Mountain Club Board of Directors, Imari has previously served on the boards of the African American Federation of Greater Boston; Save the Harbor, Save the Bay; Massachusetts Mentoring Partnership; The Edward Brooke Charter School; Third Sector New England; and the Elizabeth Peabody House. Imari is a graduate of the University of Massachusetts with a Bachelor of Arts, Masters of Education, and Masters of Arts. He is currently pursuing his PhD through the Higher Education Administration Program. He enjoys the outdoors with his family and you can often find him in the Blue Hills Reservation or the Arnold Arboretum.
Co-CEO Ms. Noel Twigg MBA
Co-CEO Term Start June 2013
Co-CEO Email
Co-CEO Experience --

Former CEOs and Terms

Name Start End
-- -- --

Senior Staff

Name Title Experience/Biography
Ms. Erica Brunner Managing Director of Strategy Erica joined the team at Parenting Journey as their Director of Strategy in 2017. She comes to the position with over eight years of experience in external relations for direct service non-profits, politics, and issue advocacy. Most recently she developed and led a national campaign to recruit and mobilize over 20,000 new members across the country in support of polices that protect women and families. She has dedicated her career to advancing access to health care for everyone through political and cultural change, and is particularly interested in the intersection of health and social justice. Erica has worked at NARAL Pro-Choice America, Health Care for All, Boston Children’s Hospital, and Health Volunteers Overseas. She holds a B.S. from St. Lawrence University in Biology and Gender Studies.
Ms. Cristina Pachano LMHC Clinical Director --
Mr. Duncan Remage-Healey MPA Managing Director of Operations Duncan joined Parenting Journey in 2017 after over fifteen years in leadership and management positions in the nonprofit world. For the last seven years, he led teams in both fundraising and program development at Boston Arts Academy at the intersection of arts and public education. Before that Duncan held leadership positions in development and program management at Habitat for Humanity Greater Boston, and has worked for many different sectors including homelessness, biological research, higher education, and public interest research. Prior to his experience in the non-profit world, Duncan was the Director of Administration for a small environmental consulting firm in California. Duncan is a graduate of Clark University with a Bachelor of Arts in Government and International Relations and a Masters in Public Administration.
Ms. Anna Yanco-Papa Managing Director of Development --


Award Awarding Organization Year
Champion in Action Citizens Bank 2015
Urban Empowerment Award Year Up Boston 2015


Affiliation Year
Children’s League of Massachusetts 2016
Massachusetts Nonprofit Network 2014
-- --
Member of state association of nonprofits? Yes
Name of state association --

External Assessments and Accreditations

External Assessment or Accreditation Year
-- --



CEO/Executive Director/Board Comments


Foundation Comments


Staff Information

Number of Full Time Staff 18
Number of Part Time Staff 10
Number of Volunteers 10
Number of Contract Staff 21
Staff Retention Rate % --

Staff Demographics

Ethnicity African American/Black: 9
Asian American/Pacific Islander: 0
Caucasian: 13
Hispanic/Latino: 3
Native American/American Indian: 0
Other: 3
Other (if specified): --
Gender Female: 21
Male: 7
Not Specified 0

Plans & Policies

Organization has Fundraising Plan? Yes
Organization has Strategic Plan? Under Development
Years Strategic Plan Considers --
Management Succession Plan Under Development
Business Continuity of Operations Plan No
Organization Policies And Procedures Yes
Nondiscrimination Policy Yes
Whistle Blower Policy No
Document Destruction Policy Yes
Directors and Officers Insurance Policy Yes
State Charitable Solicitations Permit --
State Registration --

Risk Management Provisions


Reporting and Evaluations

Management Reports to Board? Yes
CEO Formal Evaluation and Frequency Yes Semi-Annually
Senior Management Formal Evaluation and Frequency Yes Semi-Annually
Non Management Formal Evaluation and Frequency Yes Semi-Annually


Board Chair Mr. Bernard Haan
Board Chair Company Affiliation President and Founder, The Astra Foundation
Board Chair Term June 2018 - June 2020
Board Co-Chair Dr. Barry Zuckerman
Board Co-Chair Company Affiliation Professor of Pediatrics and Public Health, Boston University, Chief of Pediatrics, Boston Medical Center
Board Co-Chair Term June 2016 - June 2018

Board Members

Name Company Affiliations Status
Bithiah Carter New England Blacks in Philanthropy Voting
Kate Guedj The Boston Foundation Voting
Bernard Haan President & Founder, The Astra Foundation Voting
Monica Infante Parenting Journey Voting
Tito Jackson Verdant Medical Voting
Robert Lewis Jr. The BASE Voting
Jefly Louis Somerville Public Schools Voting
Travis McCready Massachusetts Life Sciences Center Voting
Anne L. Peretz Founder, Parenting Journey Voting
Gregg Savage Independent CFO Consultant Voting
Michele Souda Principal, Wordpower Communication Voting
Jay Youmans Smith, Costello & Crawford Voting
Rosamund Zander Family Therapist & Author Voting
Dr. Barry Zuckerman Retired Chief of Pediatrics, Boston Medical Center Voting

Constituent Board Members

Name Company Affiliations Status
-- -- --

Youth Board Members

Name Company Affiliations Status
-- -- --

Advisory Board Members

Name Company Affiliations Status
-- -- --

Board Demographics

Ethnicity African American/Black: 5
Asian American/Pacific Islander: 0
Caucasian: 9
Hispanic/Latino: 0
Native American/American Indian: 0
Other: 0
Other (if specified): --
Gender Female: 7
Male: 7
Not Specified 0

Board Information

Board Term Lengths 2
Board Term Limits --
Board Meeting Attendance % --
Written Board Selection Criteria Under Development
Written Conflict Of Interest Policy Under Development
Percentage of Monetary Contributions 100%
Percentage of In-Kind Contributions --
Constituency Includes Client Representation Yes

Standing Committees

  • Development / Fund Development / Fund Raising / Grant Writing / Major Gifts
  • Finance
  • Marketing
  • Nominating

CEO/Executive Director/Board Comments


Foundation Comments



Revenue vs. Expense ($000s)

Expense Breakdown 2017 (%)

Expense Breakdown 2016 (%)

Expense Breakdown 2015 (%)

Prior Three Years Total Revenue and Expense Totals

Fiscal Year 2017 2016 2015
Total Revenue $879,217 $7,483,851 $2,246,298
Total Expenses $2,045,064 $1,970,457 $1,886,043

Prior Three Years Revenue Sources

Fiscal Year 2017 2016 2015
Foundation and
Corporation Contributions
-- -- --
Government Contributions $24,520 $32,574 $36,667
    Federal -- -- --
    State -- -- --
    Local -- -- --
    Unspecified $24,520 $32,574 $36,667
Individual Contributions $572,397 $7,105,532 $1,900,445
Indirect Public Support -- $0 $0
Earned Revenue $183,878 $318,023 $255,743
Investment Income, Net of Losses $94,602 $21,789 $20,662
Membership Dues -- $0 $0
Special Events -- $0 $0
Revenue In-Kind -- -- --
Other $3,820 $5,933 $32,781

Prior Three Years Expense Allocations

Fiscal Year 2017 2016 2015
Program Expense $1,396,801 $1,278,657 $1,218,691
Administration Expense $359,436 $382,861 $429,590
Fundraising Expense $288,827 $308,939 $237,762
Payments to Affiliates -- -- --
Total Revenue/Total Expenses 0.43 3.80 1.19
Program Expense/Total Expenses 68% 65% 65%
Fundraising Expense/Contributed Revenue 48% 4% 12%

Prior Three Years Assets and Liabilities

Fiscal Year 2017 2016 2015
Total Assets $8,757,497 $10,369,605 $4,853,202
Current Assets $4,924,541 $6,466,324 $1,140,964
Long-Term Liabilities $432,428 $462,962 $492,167
Current Liabilities $179,311 $175,571 $161,614
Total Net Assets $8,145,758 $9,731,072 $4,199,421

Prior Three Years Top Three Funding Sources

Fiscal Year 2017 2016 2015
1st (Source and Amount) -- --
-- --
-- --
2nd (Source and Amount) -- --
-- --
-- --
3rd (Source and Amount) -- --
-- --
-- --

Financial Planning

Endowment Value $400,015.00
Spending Policy Income plus capital appreciation
Percentage(If selected) --
Credit Line Yes
Reserve Fund No
How many months does reserve cover? --

Capital Campaign

Are you currently in a Capital Campaign? Yes
Capital Campaign Purpose The Vision 2020 Capital Campaign is an $11 million, five-year fundraising initiative.
Campaign Goal $11,000,000.00
Capital Campaign Dates July 2015 - June 2020
Capital Campaign Raised-to-Date Amount $8,000,000.00
Capital Campaign Anticipated in Next 5 Years? No

Short Term Solvency

Fiscal Year 2017 2016 2015
Current Ratio: Current Assets/Current Liabilities 27.46 36.83 7.06

Long Term Solvency

Fiscal Year 2017 2016 2015
Long-term Liabilities/Total Assets 5% 4% 10%

CEO/Executive Director/Board Comments

In FY15, Parenting Journey sustained measurably improved financial stability of the organization, ending the year with a $197,966 surplus as the result of organizational restructuring and a revised budget.

Foundation Comments

Financial summary data in charts and graphs are per the organization's IRS Form 990s. Contributions from foundations and corporations are listed under individuals when the breakout was not available.


The Impact tab is a section on the Giving Common added in October 2013; as such the majority of nonprofits have not yet had the chance to complete this voluntary section. The purpose of the Impact section is to ask five deceptively simple questions that require reflection and promote communication about what really matters – results. The goal is to encourage strategic thinking about how a nonprofit will achieve its goals. The following Impact questions are being completed by nonprofits slowly, thoughtfully and at the right time for their respective organizations to ensure the most accurate information possible.

1. What is your organization aiming to accomplish?

Parenting Journey’s long-term goal is to become a national leader in the design and delivery of innovative parent development programs. At Parenting Journey, we believe that a person’s attunement and adjustment to the world begin to develop in infancy, based on the environment in which the child is raised. Parenting Journey programs are predicated on a theory of change that posits that improved parental capabilities lead to improved parenting, which results in improved child outcomes. Parenting Journey’s theory of change is based on a well-defined and detailed logic model that supports our belief that improved parental capabilities result in long-term improvements to one’s parenting attunement and, as a result, an environment where children have an increased opportunity to thrive. Otherwise stated, incremental improvements add up and produce significantly better lives. 

Our success in New York, Massachusetts, Florida, and Washington D.C. has proven that the program positively impacts a diverse, multi-cultural population, and demand for the Parenting Journey program and facilitator training opportunities is such that replication efforts are increasing each year. Parenting Journey's intended impact for the current fiscal year, all of which directly support our long-term goal, are:
  1. In Fiscal Year 2018, Parenting Journey will offer 23 groups utilizing the evidence-informed Parenting Journey curricula. A minimum of 240 parents will be impacted by these programs, resulting in measurable improvements in parent/child relationships and a stronger family foundation on which to build.
  2. In FY18, Parenting Journey will offer 28 Facilitator Trainings in NY, MA, FL, and Washington, D.C., with 393 individuals receiving facilitator certification. Graduates of Facilitator Training will return to their agencies to implement the Parenting Journey program within their own community.
  3. Utilizing the Parenting Journey Scale—which examines seven domains which have been shown to contribute to positive parenting practices—achieve statistically significant improvements in those who have completed Parenting Journey programs.

2. What are your strategies for making this happen?

Programs for Parents: Parenting Journey programs, offered in Haitian Creole, Spanish, Portuguese and English, provide opportunities for mothers, fathers, and caregivers to develop themselves as nurtured and nurturing people, laying the groundwork for a strong family foundation on which to build. Parenting Journey provides direct services to over 650 individuals each year. National expansion of the program at partner agency sites supports the growth and development of the thousands of parents, children, and families in geographic locations that the Parenting Journey cannot reach directly.  

Facilitator Training: In the coming year, Parenting Journey will train 393 professionals through its Facilitator Training program. While many participants represent growth of current agency partnerships, many will come from organizations Parenting Journey has not before collaborated with, allowing Parenting Journey to reach and positively impact new audiences. Upon completion of the Facilitator Training, graduates will return to their organizations and begin conducting the program with the parents they support, thereby helping low-income, at-risk parents become more hopeful and optimistic about their future, more understanding about what it means to be a good parent, and more confident in their parenting styles by building on their strengths, all as part of building stronger, healthier families. These 393 graduates represent an opportunity to impact 2,960 at-risk parents and their 7,400 vulnerable children across New York’s five boroughs.

3. What are your organization’s capabilities for doing this?

Parenting Journey has thirty-five years of experience in executing transformative parenting interventions with at-risk, low-income and/or immigrant parents from Greater Boston. These interventions have had a long lasting impact on over 131,000 children to date.

Agency Leadership: Parenting Journey is led by Executive Director Imari Paris Jeffries, MEd, MA. Paris Jeffries joined Parenting Journey as a leader focused on sustainability, strategy and external relations, and he was soon appointed as the Executive Director by the Board of Directors. Paris Jeffries brings a wealth of experience from the nonprofit management, community activism, education reform, and social justice sectors. Previously, he was Chief Executive Officer of Italian Home, COO of Jumpstart, and interim CEO of Boston Rising. Paris Jeffries serves as a Trustee of The University of Massachusetts System and was recently appointed by Governor Charlie Baker to the Black Advisory Commission. Paris Jeffries spearheads a collaborative leadership model which includes himself and a team of five managing directors.
Board of Directors: Parenting Journey has a highly engaged 9-member board that governs Parenting Journey’s finances, engage in fundraising activities, and determines the organization’s vision and overall direction. Board members are leaders in their respective fields which include the following: medicine, corporate philanthropy, higher education, and marketing and business development. 

Strong Partnerships: Parenting Journey believes in a collaborative approach and relies on a vast network of community partner organizations. They refer at-risk parents to Parenting Journey, expanding its reach. Community partners include Head Start, Home for Little Wanderers, and Cambridge Health Alliance. The longest standing partnership is with the Massachusetts Department of Children and Families (DCF), which Parenting Journey has worked with the since 1986. The organization works with DCF mandated families to foster resilience by focusing on identifying parents’ strengths that can help them problem-solve, set goals, and more confidently raise their children in a healthy, positive environment.

4. How will your organization know if you are making progress?

The effectiveness of the Parenting Journey programs is supported by ten years of proven results. Results of multi-year evaluation show that there are statistical significant improvements in parents and caregivers who complete Parenting Journey programs. There is proven evidence of the success of our innovative approach, as seen in the quasi-experimental study showing that our programs are evidence-based. In addition, Parenting Journey has received recognition and recommendation from state and local agencies in Massachusetts, New York, and beyond.

Quantitative Results: Independent evaluation conducted by the Institute for Community Health (ICH) over an eight-year period has shown statistically significant positive results for seven major constructs which have been shown to be associated with positive parenting:


  • Hope and Optimism
  • Identifying Personal Goals
  • Personal Goals/ Self Efficacy
  • Ability to Nurture Self
  • Self-Awareness
  • Social Networks
  • Insight


Through our train-the-trainer program, the Parenting Journey program has been replicated in nearly 500 locations across the United States, and the agency has set ambitious goals for helping more parents build the competencies they need for a healthy, strength-based approach to raising their children—and Parenting Journey strives constantly to exceed them.


5. What have and haven’t you accomplished so far?

Since 1982, Parenting Journey’s powerful programs have helped parents build safer, stronger families. To date thousands of parents have participated in the Parenting Journey program—more than 52,000 since 2007. Nearly 1,900 professionals have graduated from the Facilitator Training program, and Parenting Journey programs have been replicated in nearly 500 locations across the U.S. and can be found in communities across MA, NY, DC, FL…and more!
However, despite our successes thus far, there is still much more that Parenting Journey can accomplish in our effort to build stronger, more resilient families. There is a significant opportunity to leverage our local success into many new markets, helping many more parents. With an eye on replication in targeted markets, Parenting Journey will assist an additional 60,000 parents by the end of the five-year replication period in 2020.