Introduction and Orientation to the group

SFBT Assignment Sample

Submitted by: Sarah Yanosy

Session 1: Introduction and Orientation to the group

Members: grandparents only for this session – parents of all grandchildren are/were abusing opioids.

Emma and Bob – white, ages 65 and 67, grandson Joshua 14, mother deceased, father incarcerated

Mike and Eileen – Latinx, both aged 72, granddaughter Victoria 12, mother in treatment

Ethel – white, age 69, grandson Edward 12, mother incarcerated, father deceased

Georgette – Black, age 64, granddaughter Leticia 13, mother actively using, living in the home

Cheryl – Latina, age 62, grandson Matthew 13, mother’s whereabouts unknown, father in treatment

Goals/Learning Objectives:

Ø Participants will be able to articulate the reasons for their participation in the group

Ø Participants will contribute to constructing group rules or norms

Ø Participants will be able to name one way that our solution focused group is different from traditional family therapy.

Group Session 1 Agenda

1. 15 min – each member introduces themselves by sharing their name, the name of their grandchild, and the positive adjective that describes their family.

• Group leaders will provide name tags where grandparents will write their own names and the names and the name of their grandchild in parenthesis.

• Group leaders will use a flip chart to record the adjectives the members share and ask exploring questions or reframing information if group members struggle to use positive terms.

2. 15 min – creating group rules

• Each grandparent will identify a house rule they grew up with in their homes when they were children that they think was important and shaped how they learned. Members will then decide if it is a rule that should be adopted or adapted in some way for the GRG group.

• Group leaders will get the group started by sharing rules they grew up with like: “What happened in the family stays in family.” What that meant in our family, was that we didn’t share family business outside of home. Discuss how this was sometimes protective and sometimes fostered secrets that were unhealthy. Suggest that what it might mean for our group is that we maintain confidentiality when someone shares something about their lived experience.



• Group leaders will record group rules, ask for agreement and encourage participation from each member to add or refine the rules.

3. 15 min – Group leaders will provide psychoeducation about the opioid crisis, addiction and stats about GRG rates to normalize member experiences. Statistics and information using the following points from the following websites:

• In 2016, health care providers across the US wrote more than 214 million prescriptions for opioid pain medication—a rate of 66.5 prescriptions per 100 people.

• As many as 1 in 5 people receive prescription opioids long-term for noncancer pain in primary care settings.

• More than 11 million people abused prescription opioids in 2016. • Every day, more than 1,000 people are treated in emergency departments for misusing

prescription opioids. • More than 40% of all US opioid overdose deaths in 2016 involved a prescription opioid. • Drug overdoses claimed the lives of nearly 64,000 Americans in 2016. Nearly two-thirds of

these deaths (66%) involved a prescription or illicit opioid. • CDC estimates the total economic burden of prescription opioid misuse in the US is $78.5

billion a year, including the costs of health care, lost productivity, addiction treatment, and criminal justice involvement.

• Children who have a caring adult within the family can help to reduce the risks of suffering from future bouts of depression and anxiety.

• Over 40% of children being cared for by a grandparent are there because of at least one parent’s substance abuse.

• 28% of the kids who are being raised by their grandparents were victims of abuse, abandonment, or neglect from their parents.

• Grandparents often have to handle the false promises that parents make to their children as they attempt to stay within the child’s life, leading to future behavioral difficulties.

• For every child that is in the foster system right now, there are about 25 kids being raised by their grandparents and/or an extended family support system.


4. 30 min – each family shares their story using the 4 questions. While each family has been referred to the group because they are caring for a grandchild who came into their care after a parent was deemed unable to for reasons related to opioid, each family will have a specific issue to address and goals and tasks related to improving the identified issue. (Group leaders will use flip charts to record common themes or identify shared emotions).

• What is the most important part of the problem that brought you here?

• What part of the problem would you want to work on first?

• What is/are your thoughts about the problem you are having with your grandchild?

• What is the one thing you would like to learn as it relates to this problem from this group?

5. 15 min – overview of SFBT, description of next sessions and Q&A

• Group leaders will highlight four ways that this group will use a solution focused approach:



• Focus on the future rather than on the past • Focus on solutions rather than problems • Recognizing that the problem is not the person (separating the person from the

problem) • Looking at what is already going right.

• Group leaders will name the topics for the next seven groups:

• Signature strengths • Small changes lead to big solutions • What is better – further progress • Doing something different • Maintaining change • Panel discussion – life lessons • Change Party

• Group leaders will give the date, time and topic of the next group session.


Problem #1: Bob tends to dominate the conversation, interrupting his wife, Emma and cutting off the other members when they talk.

Solutions: I might try using physical proximity with Bob to communicate that I am paying attention to him and help him feel heard. I would ask his wife direct questions and maintain eye contact to allow her to answer and communicate with body language that her opinions are important to me. I might use a writing rather than talking structure for some activities or assign Bob the role of notetaker to promote his being in listening mode. I might use a small group discussion and report back strategy so he and his wife are separated to give her time to voice her ideas. I might also ask the group to practice active listening, and when Bob interrupts, I would remind him of the active listening goal and request that he restate what someone else has said to demonstrate he has heard them.

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