We are a family run non-profit organization staffed mainly by fellow parents (peer navigators) of children with mental health issues, substance abuse, autism or fetal alcohol syndromes. Our goal is to work with parents by showing them ways in which they can help themselves. Our intent is to make for a stronger parent so the parent can in turn, create a stronger family. We achieve these goals by individually supporting and educating families about mental health issues. We help families to navigate the systems in which they are involved to best support their child. We are supported by several grants, including one from the Alaska Mental Health Trust Authority and charge nothing to families for our services.
Our initial primary concern is to listen. Oftentimes, parents of children with mental health issues have been ignored, or worse, have been blamed by the schools, doctors and administration for their children’s issues. We will spend the time with you to understand your concerns and fears. We will then work with you to:
- know what resources are available for you and your child,
- understand the terminology and services offered,
- effectively assist you in advocating for your child’s rights in the various schools and social and health systems,
- access or negotiate the services your family needs
- assist your youth to be an active equal partner in the process of planning educational and treatment services and
- offer different venues in which to have supportive discussions regarding our children, their struggles and their victories.
Our intent is to support you as a parent so you can be a stronger family. Some of the most requested services that we offer are:
- help in developing questions to ask professionals about diagnosis, medication and types of treatment,
- attendance at, and help in understanding Individual Educational Plans (IEP) or Accommodation Plans (504) within the school system,
- accompanying families to a treatment team meeting with the behavioral health professionals, Office of Children’s Services or Probation Officer
- explanations of documentation, written reports, diagnosis and medication issues presented to you by various programs and providers and
- helping your teenager transition to adulthood.
As peer navigators, we don’t do for a parent what a parent or a youth can do for themselves. We teach, guide and support parents and children. We are fellow parents who are dedicated to empowering families to help their children have the best outcome from services and manage their own recovery. We work in collaboration with another parent organization, The Stone Soup Group, 907-561-3701 that specializes in assisting families with children experiencing disabilities, such as developmental disability or Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder.