Support For Elementary Age Children Affected By a Loved One's Addiction
It's All About The Kids
Group programs reduce feeling of isolation, shame or guilt among children living with an addicted parent or sibling. Programs promote the importance of peer influence and the mutual support. They no longer feel alone, but share bonds with others just like them!
There are approximate 8.7 million children nationwide living with at least one parent with a substance use disorder. (SAMHSA national surveys on Drug Use and Health - 2017) They are not alone!
Children living within an environment of substance abuse, who rely on supportive adults have increased independence, stronger social skills and ability to cope with difficult emotional experiences. This increases their day to day coping strategies.
Guilt and Shame
Our program is a safe, non-judgmental environment and is developed to build on each child's strength. Our compassionate and dedicated volunteer staff focuses on helping the children thrive, effectively share feelings they may not be otherwise comfortable discussing and strengthening their problem solving skills.
We help children develop an understanding that addiction is a disease. Children often feel they are at fault - "If I would have gotten an A on the test, If I keep my room clean" - they will learn with this disease, they can't fix it.
Developing a Sense of Community
The multi-age group structure aids in developing a sense of community - they aren't DIFFERENT, they have a bond with their peer and adult facilitators. The sense of isolation decreases.
Identify and Express Feelings
Kids may suppress their feelings, afraid of hurting their loved one. They also may act out. We encourage appropriate expression with the encouragement of their peers.
Build problem-solving skills
Recognizing "can-do" versus what is out of their control. As their coping and problem solving skills increase, reacting with fear or sadness in difficult times decreases.