Family Dynamics Resource Center is helping teenagers improve their mental health

The Family Dynamics Resource Center has been holding weekly meetings to help teenagers improve their mental health after seeing the impacts the pandemic was having on them.

Posted: Oct 14, 2021 10:25 PM
Updated: Oct 15, 2021 8:44 AM

REDDING, Calif. - The Family Dynamics Resource Center has been hosting a weekly meeting for teenagers to better their mental health and habits since January.

The Teen Dynamics Group hosts anywhere from five to eight teenagers, taking part in games and exercises to build social skills, coping mechanisms, or talk about whatever is on their minds.

Kari Hess is a Master’s in Social Work Intern at the center and helped lead the group discussion today.

She told Action News Now the pandemic has limited opportunities for teenagers to interact with quarantines and limited in-person learning.

However, the teenagers in the group are glad to meet new people and talk about their lives in a safe and comfortable environment.

“So, they’ve really talked about how important this group is because it’s a huge part of social connection for them, and that really helps them develop a strong pathway for the next step to come,” Hess said.

The center told Action News Now they've seen increased interest in therapy and other services they offer since the pandemic, but their team of 22 therapists is being stretched thin as a long waitlist has formed.

This increase was the main reason why the Teen Dynamics Group was started.

The center told Action News Now that they plan to expand to a new location soon that will be able to help more people and be closer to residential areas.

Parents like Michael Gallagher are just glad they can get some help for their teenagers right now.

“This is our first time here actually, so that’s why we came here,” Gallagher said. “I just wanted to bring her down here and see what kind of activities they have for her. We moved up here a couple of years ago from the bay area so she doesn’t have a lot of friends yet, so we’re just trying to get her involved in some activities in the community.”

The Teen Dynamics Group is free to join and holds meetings every Thursday at the Family Dynamics Resource Center from 5:30 p.m. to 7 p.m.

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