Adverse Childhood Experiences impact all the families at Community of Hope. Our job is to help parents and children heal while they are here.
When Maggie’s family moved into Hope House, they had their own room and knew they could stay there for a while. Maggie was no longer in an abusive relationship and was not using drugs. Her children were reunited with her. That’s the first step: making sure the children are not continuing to be traumatized.
At Community of Hope, we are drug and alcohol free, we have no tolerance for physical or verbal abuse, and families have a safe place to stay for a while. They are surrounded by people like Charlotte, one of our staff, who love and support them. Our staff are encouraging and help keep everyone safe by enforcing our rules.
Making sure families have a safe place to live leads to the second step: supporting parents in helping their children heal.
While they were here, Maggie continued to heal from her past trauma. She grew in confidence that she could care for herself and her children and learned this was much healthier than having an abusive partner in the home. She not only remained clean and sober, she began to use the skills and insights she was learning to help her children heal in the ways she had healed. She learned to see the needs of her children, set clear boundaries, and encourage a healthy interdependence instead of either over-protecting them or neglecting them.
As she grew, she could help her children grow. Carter began to learn that he could trust his mother to care for the family and not return to the abuse and drugs. Tara began to learn that she could trust her mother’s love even when she didn’t get everything she wanted and that her mom would listen to her and care for her. Through trauma recovery and parenting classes, weekly mentoring sessions, and the sharing of stories, struggles and ideas, parents heal from their trauma and learn to better parent their children, so they can continue to heal. Staff form the core of the individual support each family receives.
Families come into our lives here with no hope and even lower self-esteem due to traumatic experiences they have been through. I love that I can help empower them and help them to see the beauty inside themselves.Charlotte