Southborough Youth and Family Services asked me to share their February newsletter. Here are some highlights.
The newsletter includes news about the referral service, a weekly parent support group, changes to the Campership program, Listen with LOVE deferred workshops, the disconnect date record, and an update on the QPR program status. As usual, there is also a video preview of the updates.
Resumption of in-person appointments (with virtual option)
In January, SYFS was one of the departments to pause in-person interactions due to rising Covid cases. They are now back to allowing in-person appointments (and programs with one exception):
As of January 31, we are resuming all in-person services with the exception of a few of our QPR suicide prevention trainings. We will continue to require masks in our building at all times and social distancing of at least 6 feet for appointments. We appreciate everyone’s flexibility and understanding over the past month with the need to move appointments online to keep everyone safe in the face of increasing COVID cases. Online appointments are still available for anyone who feels more comfortable with this option. We are delighted to regularly welcome people to the office.
Support for mental health services – Referral requests suspended until February 21
While the department halted in-person support, its contracted referral service for finding mental health providers halted new intake referrals for a few weeks. As a stopgap measure, SYFS reminds the public of the support the department can directly provide.
The increase in demand causes a temporary pause on new requests for the interface referral service
If you didn’t already know, Southborough uses the interface reference service; a mental health and wellbeing helpline available to help Southborough residents find mental health care providers. . .
Last week we received the communication [here] from Interface stating that due to extraordinarily high demand in Need, Interface will place a temporary pause on all new referral support requests until Monday, February 21, 2022. .
We understand that this may worry people, as finding a suitable outpatient psychiatric provider is hard enough. We would like to remind residents of the mental health support services offered by our office:
- Clinical consultations – a one-time consultation with one of our clinicians
- Ratings – Duration of 6 to 8 sessions aimed at better defining and understanding a problem presented. This includes appointments with the person, family members, doctors, teachers, past and current providers. The assessment is complemented by a formal assessment report outlining the clinical recommendations.
- Short-term “relay” psychological support– short-term support available for those who need counseling services until a longer-term therapeutic solution is identified
- Therapeutic groups and workshops
See bulletin for more details.
New parent support group this spring
Starting in March, we will be offering a parent support space every Tuesday during lunch. As many of us are parents ourselves, we know that parenting is difficult and we also know that it can be helpful to hear that you are not alone. Join us for a space to let off steam, find great ideas and decompress before getting back to the all-important job of parenting. Details below:
Tuesdays from 12:30 p.m. to 1:30 p.m. at 21 Highland St in Southborough
From March 8 to May 17, 2022
Call Dawn Wisbey at (508) 481-5676 ext 4 with any questions.
Unfortunately, SYFS will not be able to provide daycare for those with younger children.
2022 Camp Scholarships
Each year, SYFS encourages families in need of financial assistance to apply for camp scholarships for their children. This year there are a few changes.
Camps are limited to those based in Southborough (The Town Leisure Camp, Southborough Extended Day Program and Fay School Day Camp). For Camp Town, slots are already filling up. So be sure to apply early.
I asked for clarification on the reason for the change. Director Sarah Cassell explained that this was part of an effort to make the program fairer for all participants. They try to offer scholarships to camps of similar value and experience. They are also trying to stretch their funds further. (Speaking of which, you can donate to support the program here.)
As part of the changes, scholarships will no longer fully cover camp costs. Instead, discounts will be offered. (For all the details and the application form, see the bulletin.)
Learn to listen with love
In December I wrote about the SYFS program scheduled for January – A Listen with love workshop on “The Art of Communication in Relationships”. This was postponed due to the Covid push. It has now been postponed to March.
Positive communication is an essential part of successful relationships and yet it is something that challenges us all. How do you support your loved one in distress? How do you meet your needs while maintaining important relationships? How do you persevere when regularly navigating difficult conversations with someone? SYFS offers the workshop, Listen With LOVE: The Art of Communication in Relationshipsto address some of these challenges and review the essentials of successful communication. This workshop is adapted from the community building and family training model. If you are a parent, spouse, friend, son or daughter, or simply a human being in relationship with other human beings, please consider joining us. After postponing the start of this workshop, we are happy to share that we have two scheduled for March. Details below:
Wednesday March 9 in person at 21 Highland St Southborough from 6-8 p.m.
Saturday March 19 in person at 21 Highland St Southborough from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. . .
If you have any questions about this training, please contact Shannon Kinayman at [email protected] or (508) 481-5676 ext 3
Click here to register.
National Disconnect Day – Save the Date
The annual call to take a break from screens will run from sunset Friday, March 4 through sunset Saturday, March 5. (More details in the newsletter.)
The suicide prevention program is proving very popular. So popular that right now they only save waitlists from previous sessions. Stay tuned for new dates to be announced next month.