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Family Caregiver Support Groups Are Here!

What is a Certified Family Support Partner (CFSP)?

Family at a Beach

A CFSP assists other parents and caregivers who are raising children with mental health concerns. They are able to do this in a unique way that is different from traditional professionals because they have walked the walk. In other words, they have lived experience raising a child with mental illness and have navigated various child-serving systems, such as, education, children's mental health, and juvenile corrections. They have been there, done that and they understand.

Parents and caregivers feel more heard when sharing with someone who has walked in their shoes. Family members and providers are empowered. Goals are more often met and at a more expedient pace than if no CFSP was available.

To become a CFSP, a qualified adult begins by attending and participating in CFSP Training, successfully completing an exam and satisfying the required number of supervised hours of paid or volunteer work. Our trainings may also satisfy the needs for states' requirements for Family Peer Specialists, Parent Support Specialists, etc. Check with your state before you apply.


The state of Idaho now requires that we become a proprietary school to continue providing trainings that lead to certification. This requirement is unsustainable for our small business, and therefore, we will not be providing Family Support Partner training for Idaho certification at this time. We regret this inconvenience and refer you to the Idaho Department of Health and Welfare's Division of Behavioral Health.

For states other than Idaho, please contact us to set up training sessions:


Two letters of recommendation are to be included with an application. See application below.

Each training session is held via Zoom. The exam is taken during this time.

Training sessions include lively instruction, participant interactivity, small-group discussions and more. A Participant Handbook will be mailed to each participant.


Providers, contact us if you would like a special training session for potential CFSPs or agency staff.

Webinars Available:

(Contact us to schedule one.)


"What is a CFSP?" 

Join us as we explore the purpose of a Certified Family Support Partner 

and how they can assist in meeting your agency’s goals 

toward improved outcomes for families and children.


"Preparing Agencies for CFSP Professionals" 

Is your agency ready to incorporate CFSPs into your staff? We will discuss what needs to be in place for your CFSP service to be successful and effective.

"Note-Writing Skills for CFSPs"

Are you wondering how to write notes as you meet with caregivers and document their goals and progress? This webinar will discuss what to observe and what questions to ask yourself as you meet with parents/caregivers. Strategies for writing meaningful notes will be included.

Program Development:

Contact us for technical assistance in building your

Family Support Partner service.


CFSP Training Eligibility & How to Apply

Who is eligible to become a CFSP?

A caregiver who has experience raising a child under the age of 18 with mental illness and is open to sharing his/her experience with other caregivers who are walking a similar path. 


  • Be at least 18 years old

  • Have raised or are raising a child who is living with a mental health condition

  • Have successfully navigated the various child-serving systems of care

How do I apply for training?


Download and complete the application. If unable to download application, email


Obtain two letters of reference; one from a professional source and one from a personal source. See the application for more details.


 Submit completed application and letters of reference.


You will be notified by email to schedule a screening interview.


If selected, you will be notified by email or text regarding registration and how to pay for the training. Cost is $485 / person.



As the lead trainer and owner:


  • Dr. Hoffman has over 25 years of experience working in a variety of child-serving systems that include children’s mental health, juvenile corrections and education, as well as substance use disorder prevention/intervention, policy-making in behavioral health and teaching within higher education.

  • She has lived experience raising a child with mental health concerns, as well as experience inspiring other caregivers to do the same with hope

       and encouragement.

  • She holds a master’s degree in Special Education: Exceptional Children and Social Restoration, and a PhD in Adult Education and Organizational Development.

  • Dr. Hoffman is a Certified Family Support Partner and a Certified Public Manager.

Stephanie Hoffman, PhD, CFSP, CPM

Dr. Hoffman firmly believes supported caregivers are better able to continue their responsibilities with decreased stress and increased confidence. Knowledge about one's caregiving role, along with the recognition and importance of self-care, result in an improved quality of life for caregivers and for their care receivers. We cannot effectively help those in need without supporting those who care for them.


“This was a wonderful program and I feel ready to help families!” - A. A.

“I have a better understanding of what a CFSP does and I learned more about myself.” - S. A.

“The content was thorough and well delivered. I learned a lot and am looking forward to using it in the field.” - D. M.

"I loved the class. I had a great time with others and enjoyed making new friends. I am excited to get started with my new "hat."- K.L.

"I feel you were the perfect teacher for me. You had enough colorful things and suggestions; so open and honest." -A.P.

“Engages all types of learning styles” -ES


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