Standards for Military Family Readiness programs

2020 Edition

Family Advocacy Program Services (MIL-FAP) 11: FAP Counseling for Survivors

FAP Counseling is appropriate to the request or need for service and:

  1. recognizes the customer's values, goals, and right to self-determination;
  2. accommodates variations in life style; and
  3. emphasizes personal growth, development, and positive functioning.
NA The MFR FAP provides education, information and referral, and safety planning only and is not authorized to provide clinical treatment services.
2020 Edition




Customers receiving Family Advocacy Program Services gain new competencies, improve individual and family functioning and resiliency, make connections in their community, and reduce their risk for family violence.
Note: The standards in MIL-FAP 11 address the practices associated with effectively providing FAP counseling services. Implementation of the MIL-FAP 11 standards will be reviewed and rated based on how counseling is used to prevent or treat family violence.
Full Implementation, Outstanding Performance
A rating of (1) indicates that the programs’ practices fully meet the standard and reflect a high level of capacity.  All elements or requirements outlined in the standard are evident in practice, with rare or no exceptions; exceptions do not impact service quality and/or overall performance.
Substantial Implementation, Good Performance 
A rating of (2) indicates that a programs’ infrastructure and practices are basically sound but there is room for improvement. The majority of the standard's requirements have been met and the basic framework required by the standard has been implemented.  Minor inconsistencies and practices that are not fully developed are noted, however, these do not significantly impact service quality and/or overall performance.
Partial Implementation, Concerning Performance
A rating of (3) indicates that significant aspects of the programs’ observed infrastructure and/or practices require significant improvement. The program has not implemented the basic framework of the standard but instead has in place only part of this framework. Omissions or exceptions to the practices outlined in the standard occur regularly, or practices are implemented in a cursory or haphazard manner.  Service quality or program functioning may be compromised. Capacity is at a basic level.
Unsatisfactory Implementation and Performance
A rating of (4) indicates that implementation of the standard is minimal or there is no evidence of implementation at all. Observed infrastructure and practices are weak or non-existent; or show signs of neglect, stagnation, or deterioration.

Please see Rating Guidance for additional rating examples. 
Self-Study EvidenceOn-Site EvidenceOn-Site Activities
  • Procedures for evaluating level and intensity of care (MIL-FAP 11.03)
  • Procedures for making referrals and following up as needed (MIL-FAP 11.03)

MIL-FAP 11.01

Interventions, including individual, family, or group counseling, are tailored to the unique needs of the customer and assist them to:
  1. explore and clarify the reason for accessing services;
  2. identify successful coping or problem solving strategies based on identified strengths and protective factors and formal and informal supports; and
  3. realize ways of maintaining and generalizing gains.

Literature suggests that the most successful interventions are those that are driven by the goals of the customer and utilize strengths, coping mechanisms, and support networks to solve an identified problem. Assisting customers to identify the concern that brought them to the FAP, their service goals, and the tools they have to successfully accomplish their goals leads to greater competency and fewer service needs in the future.

MIL-FAP 11.02

Counseling staff engage and motivate individuals by demonstrating:

  1. sensitivity to their needs and personal goals;
  2. a receptive, non-threatening manner;
  3. recognition and respect for their autonomy, confidentiality, socio-cultural values that support violence free relationships, personal goals, life style choices, and complex family interactions;
  4. flexibility; and
  5. ethical boundaries.

MIL-FAP 11.03

Clinical staff:

  1. determine the need for a different level or intensity of care;
  2. use written criteria for determining when the involvement of a specialist is indicated;
  3. follow up when a referral is made; and
  4. coordinate care with other service providers when it’s in the best interest of the customer and with his or her consent.