We are delighted that you will be co-leading a Family Connections program Thank you for your commitment to this programme; for securing your venue; and establishing your start date and time.

Please find below the next steps to preparing and running the Family Connections Program.  


Publicising the Family Connections Program

Please note we require at least five weeks notice from the start date to prepare for a Family Connections group

Firstly, email us at bpdfamilyconnections@gmail.com with your proposed group's Name, Start date, End Date, Group Time, Family Connections Leaders names and email addresses, Venue address and maximum number of participants.  We will then email and offer your upcoming program to those in your area on our waitlist.  We will create a flyer for your group and send this on to you. All registered families from your area will be offered a place in your program.  Occasionally we supplement this activity by publicising the program on social media, print media and through other organisations.

Participant Numbers

Please give some thought to how many participants you would like to include in your program. A minimum of eight participants is required for metropolitan areas - we recommend between 10-15 participants per group.  We aim to encourage both parents to attend – but this is the choice of individual registrations.

1-2 weeks prior to the commencement of your programme we will provide you with a list of attendees, along with their registration and contact details. Please note, participants must be over the age of 18 to attend.


Preparing and Running the Family Connections Program

Preparation before each class is critical to the effective delivery of content.  This can take anywhere between 1 to 2 hours.  During this preparation time, you will decide on the allocation of content: which parts of the Open Your Mind Video will be shown; when to break for supper; and the inclusion of other handouts or videos.

To help guide your partnership and presentation of content for your first Family Connections class, please complete this form  before your first class and return it to NEA.BPDAust at bpdfamilyconnections@gmail.com

It is important to complete this process as it provides a guide as to how to go about sharing the content and planning for the inclusion of your presentation supports.  The Leader meeting to complete this Leader Preparation Form can be in person; via Skype or by phone.  It should be completed and returned to NEA.BPDAust at least two days prior to the start of your class.

NEA.BPDAust provides an extensive number of resources to support your leadership of Family Connections.  These resources are contained in the Leaders Resource section of our website.

If you have any questions regarding the establishment or running of your group please email the National Manager of Family Connections, Natalie Malcolmson at bpdfamilyconnections@gmail.com.  Natalie is here to help you and support you with all aspects of delivering Family Connections. 

Please find below a guide to the Leaders Resources which contains the resources needed to prepare for your upcoming program.

Leaders Resources

Course Notes and Revision Material for Leaders

The Teachers notes for the six modules of the course are for both preparing for and presenting the Family Connections program. These are not to be distributed to the participants. The Participant notes are also available in the Leaders Resources and these are the notes which are handed out to the students of Family Connections program.

Leader Trainer Videos

Professor Alan Fruzzetti’s Leader Training Live Stream is a six-part video resource that is used to prepare for the upcoming program. Each video correlates to one of the six modules, and can be watched prior to the course or before the module is presented, as a refresher. 


Family Connections PowerPoint Presentations Modules 1-6:

These are available as an optional teaching aid, depending on your presentation style and personal preference.  For many new leaders, having a power point presentation is a terrific aid.  Please feel free to use as a template or guide if you would like to use a PowerPoint presentation, or you can create your own. They contain some SA relevant information which will need to be removed prior to using them in class.


Course Material for Participants

In this section of the Leader Resources, there are supplementary handouts we recommend are distributed during the course to participants, as supplements for the corresponding modules. Some of these contain additional information on various subjects, whereas others are worksheets that can help participants to practice core skills.

Open Your Mind Series

The six-part video series link is for use during your class, and each video corresponds to a module. The award-winning series features Alan Fruzzetti and a family of professional actors who bring to life some of the key concepts and skills in Family Connections.  It’s recommended that you watch each video in its entirety before each class with your co-leader and plan which parts you would like to include in class each week. We also suggest distributing the links in your weekly email to participants following class so that participants can watch the video in full in their own time.


Leader Call in Series

 The leader ‘call in’ series of audio recordings is from BPD clinical leaders and experienced US Family Connections facilitators and features a range of topics relevant to the program. These are password protected and you will find the 4 digit code on the page.


Leader Mentor

We are very fortunate to have a Family Connections Leader Mentor available for Australian Leaders. Natalie Malcolmson is available for consultation and is happy to discuss any course material related issues that you may have. She can be contacted by emailing fcleadersmentor@gmail.com

 Participant List

One week prior to the program’s commencement you will be emailed a copy of your program’s participant list, which includes participant contact details and a copy of their registration forms that will give an opportunity to get to know your participants before your program commences. Please ensure that this remains private and confidential. These details are to be used to keep in touch each week with your participants.

Attendance and Contact Details for Students

Please have a sign in sheet each evening to record attendance for your group. In our correspondence with the participants in the lead up to the program, we will outline the importance of contacting you if they are unable to attend. Please nominate at least one email address and contact number for participant use during the program, if they will be late or absent.

If any participant doesn't get in contact please follow this up with a call or email the next day or so if possible, to make sure everything is okay - this is important as it is part of our duty of care to carers attending the program.  If you don't hear from them please let us know.

When participants miss a session, please follow up with a short email following the missed class outlining what they have missed and any homework activities to prepare for the following week. The Open Your Mind Series are also to be sent to them.
Video series link: http://www.borderlinepersonalitydisorder.com/video-series/

Student’s Course Material

Some leaders choose to print course modules out and distribute to participants over the course of the program, but as this can become quite costly, a good alternative is to distribute them via email and participants can print them off and bring them to class. If you would like NEA.BPDAust to distribute the course material we would be happy to and request that you advise us when you are moving on to the next module so that we can provide participants with a copy of the notes electronically 4 days prior (minimum) to the corresponding week.

Supper Roster

Many groups choose to organise a supper roster on the first evening of the program, each week a different person brings some snacks for the group to enjoy during the evening, and this is usually organised on the first night. 

Contact Details for Participants

NEA.BPDAust will bcc you into all communication with your participants, could you please also cc bpdfamilyconnections@gmail.com into communication with your group. It is great to send a 'welcome email' to participants if you have the time to introduce yourselves as the group facilitators before the program begins, but if you find you are a bit pressed for time that's fine too!  A sample participant welcome email is included in our Leader resources.

If you have any difficulty accessing or downloading anything please let us know, and if there is anything we can do to assist you in the lead up to the program, please feel free to contact Natalie Malcolmson at bpdfamilyconnections@gmail.com.