Healthy relationship education training will be virtual in February in Iowa

Malisa Rader
Iowa State University Extension and Outreach

AMES, Iowa - Professionals who work with children and families can gain additional tools to help couples build healthy relationships during a virtual training in February.

Iowa State University Extension and Outreach is offering Healthy Relationship Education Training on Feb. 11 via Zoom. During the one-day program, professionals will learn how to use relationship education as a strategy to meet the safety, permanency and well-being needs of children.

“We know that children growing up in a home where there is a healthy, stable couple relationship have fewer behavioral and emotional problems and perform better in school,” said Malisa Rader, a human sciences specialist with ISU Extension and Outreach. “That is why healthy couple relationships are so important.”

This program uses a research-based curriculum that is being implemented across the country to help professionals encourage the development of healthy couple relationships. Research shows that when parents have more supportive and less conflicted couple and co-parenting relationships, the entire family is better equipped to handle stressors, which helps maintain family cohesion, child safety and permanency, Rader explained.

The all-day class consists of eight modules, which are based on the National Extension Relationship and Marriage Education Model. Rader and Cheryl Clark, also a human sciences specialist with ISU Extension and Outreach, will teach this class. Interactive lessons, discussions and resources will be provided. Professionals who participate will gain an understanding of the important aspects of couple relationship education.

Healthy Relationship Education Training is set for Feb. 11 from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. There is a $50 fee for the program, which includes a curriculum manual and tools. For more information or to register, go to or contact Malisa Rader at or 515-708-0622.

Iowa social workers, licensed marriage and family therapists, and licensed mental health counselors should contact their licensing board to determine course approval for continuing education contact hours. ISU Extension and Outreach will offer 6.00 professional education contact hours for social workers, marriage and family therapists and mental health counselors.

Young child walking with her parents.