Our programs are designed to meet the needs of children who have experienced significant trauma. However, it isn’t enough to focus exclusively on the children. After all, if at the end of the day, they return to a chaotic and stressful environment, little progress will be made. So, to be effective, programs must understand the circumstances of the whole family and provide support to parents as well.
We know that in order to provide responsive, comprehensive, trauma-informed services, the following fundamentals must be in place:
1. Above all, the environment is safe and predictable. For children, this means that they are treated in a consistent and loving manner, and that regardless of their behavior, their needs will be met. For parents, this means that they have confidence in program staff to meet their children’s needs.
2. Children and families have choice and influence. For children this means that, within their capacity, they have ample opportunities to make choices and influence decisions about their day. For parents, many of whom have been thoroughly disenfranchised by homelessness, domestic violence, and inter-generational poverty, this means that they are knowledgeable consumers and understand their rights and responsibilities within the program.
3. Children and families are treated with respect. For children, this means that caregivers get to know each child as an individual, understand their cues, and engage with them accordingly. For parents, this means that caregivers seek an active relationship; one that acknowledges that they are central to their children’s lives and that they know them best.
4. Caregivers understand that behavior can be a response to trauma. For both children and parents, this means knowing that behaviors that seem unhealthy or ineffective today may have helped in coping with trauma in the past. Therefore, helping children and parents learn new coping skills is paramount.
5. The programs allow space and time to mourn. For both children and parents, this means acknowledging that they've suffered tremendous losses and - so long as safety parameters are maintained - providing an environment where feelings of anger and distress can be explored.
Low teacher-child ratios enable each child to receive lots of one-on-one attention.
Children enjoy delicious and nutritious meals prepared by an onsite cook.
Children have lots of time to play, explore, and build the social and emotional skills they need to be successful learners.
Families are connected to the resources they need to regain stability.
2951 Long Beach Blvd., Long Beach, CA 90806 - PH: (562) 997-8800 - FAX: (562) 997-8807