Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Letter from a Foster Parent

Providing safe and loving homes for children is one of the primary objectives of the work of Arizona’s Children Association. We provide adoption and foster care programs all over the state to help find and secure forever homes for the thousands of kids in Arizona’s foster care system. Below is a letter from an AzCA parent:

With the aid of Arizona’s Children Association we have happily adopted four beautiful children (three boys and one girl). When it comes to children we have always had room in our hearts to love one more and to see a reflection of that love thru the eyes of a child - whether it be for a day, a week, a month or forever.

Our hearts have not reached maximum capacity, but, sadly our house has reached its capacity – and we have run out of room. When our children are all grown up and with families of their own we look forward to filling our home with wonderful grandchildren.

We thank you for fulfilling our dream of completing our family. Thank you so much for allowing us this incredible experience, the journey and opportunity of a lifetime - becoming parents.

We encourage you to please share with your family and colleagues the need for forever homes for our youth. We provide the support, training and resources needed. To learn more, visit www.arizonaschildren.org/permanency.htm

Friday, February 17, 2012

Free workshops in Northern Arizona aim to help parents work with their kids to reduce the risk of potential substance abuse

Arizona’s Children Association is proud to offer Guiding Good Choices, a substance abuse prevention program which provides skills training to assist parents in reducing the risks of substance abuse and delinquent behaviors for the children they parent.
Guiding Good Choices is an interactive five-session program, which teaches parents specific strategies to help their children avoid drug use and other adolescent problem behaviors, and develop into healthy adults. In a lively and open atmosphere, parents will learn to set clear family guidelines on drugs, as well as learn and practice skills to strengthen family bonds, help their children develop healthy behaviors, and increase children’s involvement in the family.

The Guiding Good Choices program, from Channing Bete Company, was developed by Dr. J. David Hawkins and Dr. Richard F. Catalano of the University of Washington. Their research has shown that when children are bonded to their parents, school and non-drug-using peers, they are less likely to get involved in drug use or other behavior problems. Workshop activities are based on Hawkins’ and Catalano’s Social Development Strategy, a theory of human behavior that identifies the factors that promote social bonding and positive behavior.

Workshops are provided free of charge in a group or individual in-home setting. Program workbooks are also provided at no charge. The program is being offered by Arizona’s Children Association in Apache, Navajo, Coconino and Yavapai counties, with funding provided by The Arizona Governor’s Office for Children, Youth and Families Arizona Parents Commission on Drug Education Prevention.

The program has had a positive impact on a number of local area families in Northern Arizona. “Prior to starting the sessions, many parents feel that they are clear in their expectations for the children they are raising, but quickly learn that they are often undecided, unsure or insconsistent about a lot of the issues discussed in our program,” said Carol Reiman, a senior clinician at Arizona’s Children Association who facilitates many of the workshops. “By defining expectations for those in our care and learning more concrete methods of communicating and monitoring behaviors, our parents and caregivers learn to gain greater trust in their relationships and decision-making. We’ve had wonderful responses from program participants.”

Workshop times and locations vary and can be structured around your family’s schedule. For more information, contact Carol Reiman at creiman@arizonaschildren.org or call 928.853.1055.