April is Stress Awareness Month, a topic we take seriously at Hope. We know the effects toxic stress has on the body and mind, and we recognize the majority of our women have been managing toxic stress since childhood. When a little extra stress is added to a stressed body, it compounds into a full-blown crisis. For the many women we serve who are moms, these crisis moments in parenting can lead to extra obstacles and hard outcomes.
So we train our women in positive ‘little extras’. We equip our women with extra skill sets and we encourage our women by providing extra support. This gives them the courage and confidence they need to manage their stressors head on and respond well when life presents extra demands.
Last month, our parenting, life skills, and faith based classes were attended 2,301 times!! K, a mom in our Triple P Parenting class said, “The practical techniques I learn here are so easy to bring home and use. The tools make me a better mom and so does coming to Hope. Everyone here is so supportive!” A little extra support is making a difference in the lives of K and her children.
Clients are permitted to bring their partners to parenting classes, so L’s boyfriend has been joining her as they work toward reunification with their children in the foster care system. The process is long and overwhelming. Every emotion surfaces. As they were leaving the center, L’s boyfriend said, “The teacher spoke directly to our struggle today. This morning, I was ready to say, ‘That’s it, we quit, I give up’. But the lesson was on patience and it was just what I needed to hear.” A little extra encouragement is making the reunification process seem possible for L and her boyfriend.
A little extra stress can be our undoing, but a little extra support can help us endure and push through to the other side of adversity. At Hope, we delight in providing the positive little extras that help our clients transform their lives for the better.