What kids need, now more than ever
At YES, we see kids every day who are suffering from anxiety, depression, suicidal thoughts, self-harm and more. How can we break the cycle?
Our highly trained clinicians came up with this list of five things kids need right now to be happy and successful:
- Early intervention.
How YES helps: Mental health issues typically emerge in childhood or adolescence, but treatment often doesn’t follow until years later. We exist to interrupt and redirect that trajectory. Our interventions start at birth — helping parents understand and regulate their child’s behavior, build a strong and stable relationship with their child, ensure that their child is meeting developmental milestones and more — and continue all the way up to age 22.
- A safety net.
How YES helps: Life is uncertain. A job loss or illness can cost a hard-working family their livelihood. YES is here to support families on the edge. Since our Youth & Family Homelessness Prevention Initiative launched in January, we’ve already kept 18 families from losing their homes. And we never turn young people and families away; our services are available to all, regardless of financial circumstances.
- Skills to cope with stress.
How YES helps: Our 16-week Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) Skills Groups empower teens with the skills of mindfulness, distress tolerance, interpersonal effectiveness and emotion regulation. Research shows that DBT effectively treats a variety of common mental health issues. We also work with every young person who comes through our doors on healthy decision-making and stress management.
- Support that meets them where they are.
How YES helps: Our counselors see young people as the agents of their own change. This team-oriented approach is what creates lasting well-being. And we’re available where kids need us — at more than 70 sites across the Eastside, including schools, offering care and support in multiple languages.
- A sustained sense of connection and belonging.
How YES helps: Healthy communities reinforce sound decision-making. We offer programs like BGLAD, a support group for LGBTQ+ teens; Latino H.E.A.T. and Latinos Unidos, which support Hispanic high school students by providing paths for leadership and community involvement; and Life in Recovery, a group that helps teens recovering from addiction maintain their sobriety.