The Astor Blog

Author: Suzanne Button

Supporting Children and Families’ Mental Health Year Round

For many families, facing ten weeks of summer with fewer supports and services for their children is a time of significant stress, because good educational programming for at-risk youth can sustain youth and family through times when a child’s behaviors are more challenging or more risky.

Let’s make every month in our communities a month that provides meaningful support so that children can be healthy, happy and productive, and families can receive the support they need to thrive.

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Giving Back – An Answer to Tragedy

Last week, JoAnne Bacon, a Newtown mom whose 6 year old daughter, Charlotte, was killed in the Newtown shootings one year ago today, asked that the caring citizens of our country mark this anniversary by practicing acts of kindness in our own communities.

In the communities that Astor serves, there are so many opportunities to act as an agent of hope for children who need your help.

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Strive to Thrive: Train Your Toddler’s Brain, Part 3

Last fall, I wrote about self-regulation, the important “brain training” that is needed for children to be competent and confident.   Parents can help their babies develop this important skill with warm, responsive, and predictable parenting.  When your children are toddlers, you can continue to train their brains by developing your own calmness, telling your toddler what to expect, and teaching them how to behave.

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Strive to Thrive: Building Confidence in Your Kids, Part I

Did you know that the roots of confidence and competence start when your child is just a baby? In my business, we call these roots “self-regulation,” which is a fancy way to say that a child (or adult) can be in charge of their own thinking, emotions, and behaviors.

By helping your kids develop the ability to be in charge of themselves in a healthy way, you can build their confidence in themselves and make them more likely to do well at home, in school, and with friends.  In short, YOU can TRAIN YOUR CHILD’S BRAIN.

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Strive to Thrive: 6 Ways To Build A Stronger Family NOW!

A discussion on what it takes to be a “successful” family.

I am not talking being a rich family, or a famous family. I am not even talking about being a trouble-free family. I am talking about being the kind of family that endures during hard times and rolls with the punches, stays connected to one another, and raises kids that go on to have the same connected, strong kind of family when they grow up. Scientists have studied families for many years, and they have found that there are some ways to make families stronger.

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Do Families Have to Strive to Thrive?

Astor Services has been helping families and kids thrive for a long time now.  In my job at Astor I try to help staff bring the best practices to our families and kids; I find those practices by reading about what scientists who study families have discovered about helping families and kids heal.

But a few years ago, something changed in my life.  I became a Mom.  When I had my twins, my questions changed from, “How can Astor help families and kids who are struggling with mental health and behavioral issues?,” to “What does the science say about helping all families stay more connected, feel healthy and happy, and help their kids grow and thrive?”  Most importantly, “Can science provide families and kids who are struggling with mental health issues a road map to recovery?”

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