The I AM Special project consists of six approximately 90-minute long evening sessions. Participants must plan to attend all six sessions. They are:
At every group, there is a time for a snack, a large group activity, and an individual activity.
- Getting Acquainted, where the purpose of the group is explained to the children and the ground rules are established;
- Feelings, where the children learn about different feelings;
- Chemical Dependency, where the children learn about how alcohol and other drugs affect people and families;
- Defenses, where children learn what defenses are and how we use different ones for different situations;
- Problem Solving, where children learn problem-solving strategies they can use; and
- Families, where children have the opportunity to discuss types of families and why families are important.
There is no cost to participate in this project, and referrals may be made by therapists, teachers, counselors, social workers, and all other helping professionals. Self-referrals are also accepted.
The Hope Council welcomes donations to help in its mission of serving children of addiction. The following items are always in demand for I Am Special:
- Art supplies
The Hope Council is also in need of volunteers who are interested in helping children of addiction.
Addiction affects the entire family, but with a little support from caring adults, children of addiction may develop autonomy and independence; develop strong social orientations and social skills; engage in acts of “required helpfulness”; develop close bonds with caregivers; cope successfully with emotionally hazardous experiences; perceive their experiences constructively, even if those experiences cause pain and suffering; and develop day-to-day coping strategies. (National Association for Children of Alcoholics)
Children of addiction need to be taught the Seven C’s: You didn’t cause it; you can’t cure it; you can’t control it. You can help take care of your feelings by communicating your feelings, making healthy choices, and celebrating being yourself. (National Association for Children of Alcoholics)