From: Center on Nonprofits and Philanthropy <CNPnewsletter@ui.urban.org>
Date: Mon, Oct 31, 2011 at 4:13 PM
Subject: Event Reminder: Forum - Doing More with Less: Leveraging Community Capital
From: National Center for Family & Marriage Research <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Mon, Oct 31, 2011 at 2:25 PM
Subject: News and Notes
From Shoestring to Success: Growing Healthy Marriage Coalitions |
serendipitously connected with the Healthy Marriage Initiative. The outgrowth of ... umbrella organization the Indiana Community Healthy Marriage and Family ...
From: Coalition for Divorce Reform <email@example.com>
Date: Fri, Oct 28, 2011 at 12:45 PM
Subject: News from Coalition for Divorce Reform
Coalition for Divorce Reform | Chris Gersten | Boulder | CO | 80301
From: Leo & Molly Godzich <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Wed, Oct 26, 2011 at 11:40 PM
Subject: Update: M3 Mission:Marriage Multiplication from IMC 16
---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: "First Things First" <email@example.com>
Date: Oct 27, 2011 1:07 PM
Subject: Have you had "The Talk" with your kids? | FTF eNews October Vol.2
From: Urban Institute <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Tue, Oct 25, 2011 at 10:49 AM
Subject: Forum/Webcast: Nation's Priorities & Children
You are cordially invited to attend
THE NATION'S PRIORITIES AND CHILDREN:
To attend in person in Washington, D.C., register at:
To watch the video webcast or a recording, go to
Government's gears are being ground smooth by nonstop wrangling over broad and deep economic maladies, partisanship that grows as election 2012 nears, and fractured visions for America's future.
In a month, Congress's Joint Select Committee on Deficit Reduction, known informally as the Super Committee, will issue its recommendation on how to deflate the deficit by at least $1.5 trillion over the next ten years. In a year, Americans will go to the polls to select many federal, state, and local leaders. And in between these events, state capitals will tangle anew over shrinking revenues, burgeoning constituent needs, and balanced-budget dictates.
Where, in all of this, are America's 74 million children? What challenges and opportunities are posed by budget battles when we think about the dramatic changes in children's lives in recent decades -- almost 22 percent living in poverty, the trend toward "majority minority" among children, the regional shifts from northern states losing children to southern states gaining them? What will it take to come to national and state budget decisions that invest at the level needed for the youngest generation to succeed, especially in light of states' senior role in funding children's programs and services?
The search for answers will begin with new commentaries by Urban Institute scholars from diverse disciplines. Each reflection is grounded in an understanding that over the last two decades economic and demographic trends have substantially changed -- or upended -- the lives of children. Join us for an adult conversation about America's children, budgets, and priorities.
| At the Urban Institute |
2100 M Street N.W., 5th Floor, Washington, D.C.
Lunch will be provided at 11:45 a.m. The forum begins promptly at noon.
This newsletter is being sent to: billcoffin68@GMAIL.COM
October 26, 2011
How To Create More Intact Families
By Mike McManus
ST. LOUIS - “Taxpayers are spending a trillion dollars a year to subsidize non-marriage – 75% federal and 25% by states – which goes to the single mom,” Phyllis Schlafly asserted at the launching of a new Center for Marriage Policy. She noted Ronald Reagan once said, `If you subsidize something, you will get more of it.’”
America has subsidizing cohabitation. Result: it soared 17-fold from 430,000 in 1960 to 7.5 million last year. Subsequently marriage rates have plunged in half. Further, 41% of U.S. births are out of wedlock (mostly to cohabiting couples) vs. only 2% unwed births in Japan.
How can America create more intact families?
There are two major answers, and the Center for Marriage Policy is unique in America in pursuing both options.
First, America’s churches can be helped to do a better job. They marry 86% of Americans, but not well. Protestant divorce rates are actually higher than the unchurched.
However, my wife and I have created Marriage Savers which has helped 10,000+ clergy in 229 cities adopt a “Community Marriage Policy” that has reduced divorce and cohabitation rates across entire metro areas. I was invited by David Usher, the Center’s founder, to speak to St. Louis area pastors about creating this intervention.
The second major strategy to build more intact families is political.
Usher invited state legislators to attend a luncheon at which he said, “America is drowning in deficit spending. Marriage absence is the greatest economic problem we face and the greatest social problem. Nothing creates more human misery.
“Over 45 years, poverty levels for married families have been only 5% to 7%, while that of unmarried individuals is 5-6 times higher. The government cost was $960 billion last year alone, for Medicaid, food stamps, day care, foster homes, etc. America is going broke.”
Therefore he called for a “marriage revolution,” and asked me to outline possible changes in state law.
First, State laws could be changed to reduce divorce rates.
Last week a proposal was made for a “Second Chances Act,” based on research which reports that about 60% of divorces are by couples who are no more unhappy than those who remain married and have “low levels of conflict.”
Further, new research by University of Minnesota Prof. William Doherty surveyed 2,500 couples and found that 40% of those well into the divorce process, say that “one or both of them are interested in the possibility of reconciliation.” That offers hope.
Therefore, Doherty and Leah Ward Sears, former Chief Justice of Georgia’s Supreme Court, proposed a “Second Chances Act” would set a one year “cooling off” period before a divorce can become final. It also encourages spouses to send their mates an “early notification and divorce prevention letter,” warning that a divorce was likely if problems were not resolved.
A year’s delay would be a big change for 25 states with no waiting period, or only 20-60 days. Of 10 states with the highest divorce rates, 9 had no waiting period. A year would allow time for much reconciliation.
Second Chances would require parents of minor children to attend divorce education classes, in person or on line, before they file for divorce. The course would offer information on the impact of divorce on children, and on the option of reconciliation, and its benefits to adults.
Divorce rates would drop, but the injustice of No Fault Divorce would remain. A man who left his family and ran off with a younger woman would still get half of family assets.
Another proposal, Responsible Spouse Guidelines, would give 50%-67% of child custody time and 60%-100% of family assets to the “Responsible Spouse” trying to preserve a marriage, with a judge deciding the exact split. Neither a person who files for divorce nor an adulterous partner could be designated the Responsible Spouse.
However, the Guidelines would give the other parent, at least one-third of child custody time, five overnights out of 14. That would double the access of non-custodial parents to their children. This proposal by Ronald Grignol and Dr. Michael Ross, was published this summer by FCS Quarterly.
How can cohabitation be reduced? Ideally, a new President might ask Congress to pass a law encouraging couples living together to marry. He might say, “If cohabiting parents marry, the government will not cut your Medicaid, food stamps, housing subsidies, etc. for two years, with benefits being tapered off over three more years.”
If these reforms were enacted, divorce rates would fall and more children would grow up with married parents giving them a better future. Taxpayers would also save billions in time.
Copyright © Michael J. McManus, President of Marriage Savers and a syndicated columnist.
My new email address is email@example.com
From: Smartmarriages <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Wed, Oct 26, 2011 at 12:16 AM
Subject: The Woman Who Saved Marriage/2nd Act/ 50th Tribute/ NARME Dates/ Alabama Grant - 10/25/11
To: List <email@example.com>, Blogs <firstname.lastname@example.org>
- The Woman Who Saved Marriage
- THE SECOND ACT
- 50th Wedding Anniversary Tribute
- Save the Dates: NARME 2012 CONFERENCE: BALTIMORE, JULY 20-25
- Grant brings big money to college
I’ve been away for 2+ weeks and returned to over a thousand emails one of which (posted below) perked me up – though not so sure we can say we’ve “saved marriage.” We shall see...._____________________________________________
In any case, my thanks to Susan Heitler for such a nice tribute and also to all of you who forwarded it to me and added your own quite fulsome praise. I am also encouraged by the dozens of emails from folks looking for Marriage Education classes. People visit the Smart Marriages website and read about the wonders of marriage education, and then, naturally, want to take a Marriage Education class. That’s a good thing though the fact that many still mention that their marriage counselor has suggested they separate makes me nuts. I’m also dismayed when I can’t direct those who are inquiring to classes in their cities – sometimes not even in their states. If you’re teaching a class, please list it on the Directory. Or, if you’re teaching online or by phone, many couples are in locations where we have no coverage and would appreciate an at-a-distance marriage education opportunity. Here’s the at-a-distance section:
Get thee listed. And, maybe I should also say, get your program online. - diane
- The Woman Who Saved Marriage
Diane Sollee launched marriage education and stopped the divorce epidemic.
October 21, 2011 by Susan Heitler, Ph.D
- THE SECOND ACT
I’m told that the website I included in the post about the Second Act Divorce Reforem proposal for state legislation, has no info about it. Find that info here: http://americanvalues.org/secondchances
Also, you can get an audio, video or transcript of the Bill Doherty/Leah Sears Second Act event at Brookings here:
http://www.brookings.edu/events/2011/1021_divorce.aspx- 50th Wedding Anniversary TributeHi – I’m Margie, and my sisters, Georgia and Jaime, and I want to welcome you all and thank you for coming today. We realize there are two very important football games going on right now; and we are happy you chose to spend the afternoon with us to celebrate our parents 50th wedding anniversary.
Part of my trip involved attending the 50th anniversary of my daughter-in-law’s parents. Here are her remarks at their vow-renewal celebration. You can see that she used the Smart Marriages’ quotes page, which anyone can do:
http://www.smartmarriages.com/marriage.quotes.html. But she’s done the work and did a great job (there wasn’t a dry eye in the house) so I’lll share it as it might make it easier for the rest of you (IF you get so lucky as to host a 50th celebration!) - diane
I’ll start by stealing a quote from my mother-in-law, Diane Sollee, sitting right over there: “Any fool can have a trophy wife, but it takes a real man to have a trophy marriage.” I think my dad lucked out and got both – a trophy wife and a trophy marriage. 50 years – holy cow. That’s really hard to imagine.
Most of you probably don’t know that not only have my parents been married 50 years, but they have been together since they were 13 and 15 years old. My mother has never had another boyfriend besides my dad. When my sisters and I were younger, that fact really grossed us out – and we still find it a little suspect. I mean “Mom, really? – No other boyfriend?” I look at my son and daughter who are almost 16 and my niece who is 14, and I cannot imagine them pairing up for life. It’s even difficult to imagine for my 20-year-old nephew. But, I suppose things were different then; and when you find the love of your life you stick with that person. I guess we should all be that lucky.
Way back 50 years ago, everyone got married. It’s what you did. No questions asked. Today, not so much. So you might ask, why do we get married? What’s the use? Because, we need a witness to our lives. There are a billion people on this planet. What does any one life really mean? But in a marriage, you’re promising to care about everything. The good things, the bad things, the terrible things, the mundane things. All of it. All the time, every day. You are saying, “Your life will not go unnoticed, because I will notice it. Your life will not go unwitnessed, because I will be your witness.”
So how do you make it to 50 years? Well in our household the answer to that question was hunting and fishing. Every weekend while we were growing up, our dad would leave on Saturday morning for a hunting or fishing trip. The four girls would get up and watch Style with Elsa Klensch on CNN. Then we would clean house, take showers and go shopping for the day – a little female bonding. On Sunday afternoon, dad would return, and the family would be whole again. So, my tip to all you newly-marrieds is – find something you enjoy doing apart. Do that thing, then come back together. It certainly worked for my parents.
We often hear people say, “Is there anything more beautiful than a young couple clasping hands, in love on the path of marriage? Can there be anything more beautiful than young love?” And the answer is, "Yes, there is a more beautiful thing. It is the spectacle of an old man and an old woman finishing their journey together on that path. Their hands are gnarled, but still clasped; their faces are seamed, but still radiant. Their hearts are physically bowed and tired, but still strong with love and devotion for one another. Yes, there is a more beautiful thing than young love. That thing is old love."
Let’s welcome my parents.-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
- Save the Dates: NARME 2012 CONFERENCE: BALTIMORE, JULY 20-25
For details, http://www.narme.org/portal2/
See NARME Links and Clips updated daily at http://scoop.it/t/narme
- Grant brings big money to college
Anna Claire Conrad
The Auburn Plainsman
Oct 20, 2011
(Thought you might find it interesting to read about one of the Marriage Grant recipients in some detail and cheer them on for their progress. Bravo to this team. - diane)
Auburn’s College of Human Sciences has been endowed with a three-year, $7.5 million grant to continue the promotion of the Alabama Healthy Marriage and Relationship Education Initiative.
“Since 2006, we had a five-year, $9.2 million grant,” said Roberta Jackel, project manager for the AHMREI. “When this grant transpired, we applied for and was appropriated this new, three-year federal grant through the Department of Health and Human Services.”
Jackel said this grant will be used to fund healthy relationship and marriage education programs throughout Alabama.
“We will host a series of classes that will be taught here in Lee County,” Jackel said. “Previously, through our last grant, these classes were only taught by 10 partners scattered around the state.”
Francesca Adler-Baeder, professor of human development and family studies and project director of the AHMREI, said these classes will be free because of the grant.
Adler-Baeder also emphasized these programs are an educational outreach resource at the community’s disposal to better their marriages and relationships, and they are in no way counseling sessions or interventions.
“We believe that healthy relationship skills can be taught and that people can learn better communication, conflict resolution and parenting skills through these educational workshops,” Jackel said.
Rachel Parham, recent Auburn graduate in human development and family studies, said the people who attend these classes thoroughly enjoy the program, and, based on past progress, Lee County will greatly benefit from this initiative.
“For these next three years we will be providing on-campus educational programs on maintaining healthy relationships,” Adler-Baeder said. “These classes will be made available through the continuing education program and, perhaps, on different locations throughout the University.”
Jackel said Alabama has historically had a high divorce rate.
Adler-Baeder said when this organization first began its educational initiative in 2006, Alabama was ranked as the state with the fifth-highest divorce rate.
“Since then, Alabama has dropped five places and is now ranked as the state with the 10th highest divorce rate,” Adler-Baider said. “It’s these results and the individual results we witness firsthand with our participants that motivates us to continue this initiative.”
Parham said conflict within a marriage affects the entire family dynamic.
“The children of the couples who attend these classes end up being happier and more well-behaved because they see that the example their parents are setting for them,” Parham said.
Adler-Baeder said she looks forward to the Auburn community getting involved.
“We’ve seen through past programs with different junior high and high schools around the area that the peers-teaching-peers method has helped our clients immensely and that teens tend to learn better from a demographic they can relate to,” Parham said.
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