Celebrating Families!™

The Celebrating Families!™ curriculum is a cognitive behavioral support group model written for families in which one or both parents have a serious problem with alcohol or other drugs and in which there is a high risk for domestic violence, child abuse, or neglect. Celebrating Families!™ works with every member of the family, from ages 3 through adult, to strengthen recovery from alcohol and/or other drugs, break the cycle of addiction and increase successful family reunification. Celebrating Families!™ fosters the development of safe, healthy, fulfilled, and addiction-free individuals and families by increasing resiliency factors and decreasing risk factors while incorporating addiction recovery concepts with healthy family living skills.

Last reviewed: 2023

Intended Outcomes:

Program objectives:
  1. To break the cycles of chemical dependency and violence/abuse in families by increasing participant knowledge and use of healthy living skills. Participants will:
    • Develop better communication skills.
    • Learn how to appropriately express their feelings.
    • Be able to demonstrate anger management skills.
    • Be able to use problem solving and decision making skills.
    • Develop coping skills to deal with stressful situations.
  2. To decrease participants use of alcohol and other drugs and to reduce relapse by teaching all members of the family about the disease of chemical dependency and its impact on families.
    • Participants will increase their knowledge of the impact of alcohol, prescription and illegal drugs on children, individuals and families.
  3. To positively influence family reunification by integrating recovery into daily family life and by teaching healthy parenting skills.
    • Providing a safe, nurturing place for children and parents to talk and to explore their feelings and choices.
    • Facilitating trust through a process of bonding with consistent role models.
    • Assisting participants in developing their self-awareness and self-worth.
    • Educating participants about chemical dependency as a disease and how it affects family members.

Continuum of Care:
Selective Prevention, Universal Prevention

Topic Areas:
Behavioral Health/Mental Health, Disruptive Behaviors, Physical Health, Substance Use, Trauma

Adult (25+), Childhood (4-12), Early Childhood (0-3), Teen/Adolescent (13-18), Young Adult (19-24)

Geographic Locations:
Rural, Urban

Delivery Settings:
Community-Based, Congregate Care Facility

Cultural Considerations:
A balanced amount of the research involved diverse populations

The main curriculum is designed for ages 3 through adult. There is also a Celebrating Families Supplement for ages 0-3.

There is no minimum credential requirement to implement this model. Celebrating Families!™ (CF!) says that the training is for professionals (social workers, agency staff, administration, etc.) and potential volunteers who are interested in learning how to facilitate the 16-session evidence-based support group model for families affected by addiction.


Is Training Required?
Yes, see developer info

Who can provide the required training?
If interested in discussing a Celebrating Families!™ training, contact NACoA's Director of Programs Mary Beth Collins: mbcollins@nacoa.org

Program Costs (materials, training, etc.):
Yes, refer to program website

Program/Practice Website:

Relevant Published, Peer-Reviewed Research:

Sparks, S. N. & Tisch, R.. (2018). A family-centered program to break the cycle of addiction. Families in Society, 99(2), 100-109.

Additional Sources:


Promising rating

WV Rating:
»WV Ratings Info

Rationale for Rating:

Most of the recent research we were able to review was non-peer reviewed (i.e., dissertation/thesis projects). We did not identify any meta-analyses or RCTs for this program. However, the published (and peer-reviewed) results that were available were promising. In addition, this program has been listed on SAMHSA's National Registry of Effective Programs and Practices as of 2008, thus bumping our rating up to Promising. This program has been developed to use in different languages, which is also very promising.

Contraindications or Concerns:
None identified

Other Registries/Ratings

The California Evidence-Based Clearinghouse for Child Welfare:
Promising Research Evidence

Blueprints for Healthy Youth Development:
Not On Registry

Clearinghouse for Military Family Readiness:
Not On Registry

Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention Model Programs Guide:
Not On Registry

Washington State Institute for Public Policy:
Not On Registry