Rainbow Days Training
It Started with a Sunshine, a Cloud, a Rainbow and a Poem
How did the opening and closing rituals in the CBSG® Program Model begin and evolve?

In the Fall of 1982, 7 children and I sat on the floor of a Sunday School room at Lovers Lane United Methodist Church in Dallas, TX. The lesson plans I developed were the framework for the first Kids’ Connection CBSG Program Model adaptation. And our logo was a hand drawing my artistic Aunt created from my verbally described vision—a sunshine and a cloud on the ends of a 3-arc rainbow.

Besides being a colorful, inviting picture, this logo was symbolic. We all experience some Cloudy moments (a sadness, having “don’t like” feelings, losses, etc.) in our days or weeks, as well as Sunshine moments (a fun or happy experience, doing activities we enjoy, bright spots, etc.). Neither Sunshines nor Clouds last forever and we can learn and practice skills to help us navigate in healthy ways between the two. 

From the beginning we started each group session by inviting participants to share a Sunshine and a Cloud from their previous week. This weekly ritual became the way we have opened group for almost 40 years now! And the over 22,000 CBSG® Program Facilitators we have trained are opening their groups in the same way. Initially we closed each group by standing in a circle, holding hands, repeating out loud this poem: “I am special, I am me. There is no one else I would rather be!”
What is the significance of rituals like Sunshine & Cloud and the Major Message closing?

One of the most important features of rituals is they mark time by defining a beginning and an ending. Rituals can also be defined as a custom, habit, pattern, or practice.

Children and youth in a CBSG® Program have often experienced adversities or traumas. They may live with unpredictability, rapid change, and events beyond their control. And certainly, with the almost year of COVID restrictions, and the altering or elimination of foundational routines, the practice of rituals for all of us has never been more important.

One of the most significant benefits of the support group is the safety and predictability participants experience. 

The same schedule is followed each session, which includes opening with Sunshine & Cloud, and closing with the Major Message Ritual. These practices not only mark the beginning and ending of group, but by being spoken aloud, and holding a sunshine and cloud cutout, or repeating words with hand gestures, these practices reinforce the healthy life lessons we want children to internalize.

How were the Major Messages developed?

This January Training Connects newsletter marks the beginning of a 6-part series on the Major Messages. Our first article focuses on the research and development of the Major Messages and how they have evolved since their inception to the Messages used today. 

The Messages are built on 5 research-based domains. These domains, and the Major Message development process are described in the Specific Key Domain & Major Messages Sources link

The February through June newsletters will each focus on one of the Major Messages:

As with all our services and products we welcome your feedback and input. If you have a story or experience about Sunshine & Cloud, or the Major Messages you would like to share please do so! You can email me directly at catheyb@rainbowdaystraining.org

We hope this series will give you an even better understanding of these two core components of the CBSG® Program. And how, over time, these practices have proved to be so necessary to the goal of instilling in children and youth the social, emotional, and coping skills they need to live meaningful, healthy lives.

Cathey Brown, CBSG® Program Developer
Training Calendar
Virtual CBSG Program Facilitator Training

Kids’ Connection, Youth Connection, and Kids’ Connection, Too (collectively known as the CBSG® Program ) are unique, interactive, multi-cultural curriculum-based prevention interventions that teach high-risk children and youth ages 4-17 a set of essential life skills: skills to help them learn how to cope with difficult family situations (which include Adverse Childhood Experiences), resist negative peer pressure, set and achieve goals, and refuse alcohol, tobacco, and other drugs. 

This training is designed to fully prepare schools, community-based organizations, churches, juvenile justice divisions, volunteers, and other youth service professionals to fully implement the CBSG Program with fidelity. 

Those completing this training will receive their choice one of the CBSG Program Facilitator manuals:
  • Kids’ Connection for ages 4-12 in Schools and Communities
  • Youth Connection for ages 10-17 in Schools and Communities
  • Kids’ Connection, Too for Ages 4-15 in Homeless & Domestic Violence Shelters, Group Homes & Other Transitional Living Environments

Please contact us at info@RainbowDaysTraining.org for more information!
Spotlight Moment
A special shout out and thank you to the Spotlight Moment from our January CBSG Program Facilitator Connection Call, the Alcohol and Drug Abuse Council of Deep East Texas (ADACDET) in Lufkin, TX!  Melanie Patterson, Program Manager for Youth Prevention Selective & PRC and
Elwanda Limbrick, Prevention Specialist, joined us on this call to discuss the ups and downs of creating and using Pre-recorded Kid’s Connection and Youth Connection Group Video segments*Click here to see Elwanda in action presenting Kid’s Connection Session 4, Handling Anger. Pre-recorded group sessions opened up new schools interested in ADACDET’s services. Relationship and connection is what it’s all about. And, in Lufkin, connections are happening all around! 

*Check with your Funding Source to see if and how pre-recorded CBSG Program sessions can be utilized.
Do you need to alter how you implement the CBSG® Program during COVID?

Check out the COVID resources on our website. The Curriculum-Based Support Group (CBSG®) Program Virtual Implementation Tips can help you navigate through the continuing COVID pandemic. We want to ensure everyone is aware there are Developer-approved guidelines. However, you always need to check with your Funding Source to see what they approve. Reach out to us if you have specific questions or need additional guidance.
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