Roots and Wings:

The Way of Wholeness

Introduction to Roots and Wings, by Douglas Bonar

The vision and initial intent of Roots and Wings started during a lunch at Burger King with Rev. Shirley Fleming, LMT (Licensed Marriage Therapist).  The title – Roots and Wings – was adopted in that meeting.  We subsequently presented Roots and Wings: The Balance of Healthy Parenting at a day long workshop at our local (Pinellas County, FL) Juvenile Welfare Board on February 14, 1990.

I never quit working on the model.  Approximately 1995, I submitted a proposal to Family Resources, Inc. and Jane Harper, the Executive Director at the time, took a chance and supported my work.  I will always be thankful for her trust and support.  I conducted Roots and Wings parenting groups for almost two years for the Family Builder’s Program.  I was later awarded a grant by the Florida Department of Health and Rehabilitative Services to develop a parenting program slide show presentation based on my model.  The two original slides from the parenting presentation, below, are from a time when I was employed by the Child Protection Team Program of Help a Child, Inc.  I worked at the program as a multidisciplinary consultant on child abuse cases for 23 years. 


 “There are only two lasting bequests that we can give to our children.  One is roots and the other is wings.”
 ~ Hodding Carter

“Children have never been very good at listening to their elders, but they have never failed to imitate them.”
~  James Baldwin

Roots & Wings Model Video


“On the Roots & Wings sheet, the words Health, Whole, Holy Home was my main focus. I had to fix my home.” – Anonymous 2016

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