Health issues

Grant expands program to help foster teens and families with mental health issues

An organization in western Michigan received a grant from Wayne State University so that teenagers in foster care in the area can get all the mental health help they need.

The grant will expand a Summit Pointe program that began about two years ago in the Battle Creek area that provides foster children, ages 12 to 17, with the counseling and therapeutic care they need. for six to nine months.

Eric Worley, a Summit Pointe recruiter and trainer, said whether it was parents, kids, or a bit of both, they worked to find the right counseling options.

“If they go to a mental hospital or a group home, they will learn to live in these environments. where they will learn some of these skills to be in a home environment, ”said Worley.

The Wayne State grant would help connect mentally ill teens and foster parents, or teens trying to stay out of trouble, with counselors and therapists.

The program is strictly voluntary, with no court or state mandate.

It’s evidence-based and the success rate is around 90%, according to Worley.

If the child needs more than six to nine months, the program will work with them to make sure they don’t get rushed.

Worley said it had to be voluntary without refoulement from parents or children.

“With any therapy, the people who receive it have to be on board for it to be effective, so if it was a court-ordered program, we wouldn’t see the success rates that we’re getting because ‘they’re going to be worried, they’re going to fight this,’ he said.

There is a need for families to welcome some of these children. To get involved, you can head to Summit Pointe website.

“Therapeutic families are the cornerstone of this program. We need them to make this work, ”Worley said.


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