Strong, Happy Families

Strong, happy families create a sense of well being within the family and in each family member. Wellbeing includes a person’s physical, mental, emotional and social health. Strong, happy families encourage and support each other to be optimistic, hopeful and to strive together to achieve individually and as a family. In strong, happy families everyone has the right to feel safe, comfortable, happy and loved. Parents have a responsibility to provide an appropriate role model for their children and a nurturing environment in which they can thrive.

The Family Strengths Research Project* identified eight strengths that strong, happy families in Australia have in common. These are:


Strong, happy families value open, two-way communication. This means parents and children make sure everyone is listening to each other as well as having the chance to talk. Strong, happy families create opportunities for the whole family to participate in discussions about everyday matters as well as opportunities to discuss issues and problems.


Togetherness is creating a “glue” to help families develop a sense of belonging. Togetherness is sharing similar values, beliefs and morals. Children are seen as important members of the family who have a strong sense of belonging to the family. The strong, happy family sticks together through life’s journey.

Sharing Activities:

Strong, happy families share and do things together. This can include sports, playing games, reading stories, spending time together, sharing interests and holidays. As children get older more creative thinking is needed to keep them involved in family activities. Suggestions include inviting older children’s friends to join in family activities and creating a “young people friendly” house where children’s friends are actively encouraged to “hang out”.


Affection is shown through a genuine sharing of feelings through hugs, cuddles and kisses. Strong, happy families tell each other how they feel, consider each other’s feelings and show care, concern, thoughtfulness and interest in each other.


Each member of a strong, happy family knows that family members will always be there to look out for them and take an interest in them. In a strong, happy family it is OK to ask for help and support.


Members of strong, happy families show respect and appreciation of each other’s differences. Competition is discouraged and family members acknowledge and value each others’ uniqueness, respect other points of view, forgive each other and allow each other their own space.


Strong, happy families are dedicated and loyal to each other and the family as a whole. Strong, happy families feel safe and secure with each other, trust each other and keep promises.


Strong, happy families have the ability to adapt to changing circumstances and have a positive attitude towards any challenges that arise. Strong, happy families talk things through, keep each other’s hopes up, and pull together in a crisis, learning as a family as they go.

In strong, happy families the relationships between the adults and children are nurturing and supportive, kind and fair, in which children have a strong sense of importance and belonging.