Addressing Well-Being through Wellness Café

October 25, 2022

CARE in Central Nebraska

On any given day in Central Nebraska, you can find one of the dedicated employees of Families CARE supporting and advocating for parents, youth, and children.  With funding support from Snow-Redfern Foundation and other vital sources, this non-profit family organization provides services to parents who have children with emotional, behavioral, or mental health challenges.

Parent Voice

Among the many services and supports they provide, teaching parents that they (as parents) are the most important voice in their children’s lives is the most important. Advocacy and support are provided by peers; parents who have lived experience to share with other parents, and includes helping them identify their strengths, needs, and goals, developing strategies to meet their goals, sharing resources and service referrals, supporting them at school meetings, team meetings, or court, providing support groups for parents and youth/children, offering special events, and providing the partially Snow-Redfern Foundation funded Wellness Café.

Wellness Café Support groups are offered to youth in two age groups:  Middle School (5th-8th grade) and Young Adult (9th grade – college).  Meetings consist of time to connect and eat together, activity and hands on learning, sharing and success stories for growth.

Opportunity for Connection

Executive Director, Karla Bennetts, said “this model provides youth an opportunity to build connection and add informal supports through their peers”.

All activities provide youth with a new skill or tool they can utilize in their journey to live a life of wellness.  The discussions provide youth an opportunity to learn, connect and share.  Youth learn from one another and gain support as they share their stories of challenges and successes.

Youth Voice

“Youth voice is prioritized with youth establishing comfort rules for their groups and what they wanted to learn about, discuss and do at future meetings”, said Karla.

To learn more about Families CARE and the work they do to support parents, youth, and children, check them out at: What We Do – Parent Parent Assistance