With the new year approaching, it is so amazing to end 2017 with a wonderful announcement. Our CEO/Founder, Sharon Moen Roubinek, has been awarded the honor of being named a Global Goodwill Ambassador!! Imagine Foundation for Kids wants to extend our congratulations to you, Sharon, and know that this is just the beginning! Children and families need help, and we are here to help as many as possible.
To our supporters, none of this is even remotely possible without your show of support, whether it is through donations, volunteering, referrals, or spreading the news about what we do. Thank you so much and may God continue to bless all of us as we move forward to helping HIS children.
Imagine Foundation for Kids is a 501C3 nonprofit dedicated to helping children and families find hope again. We are involved as child advocates in court, as a resource for, and in alliance with, other nonprofits, educating and improving family life for those in need, finding homes for children within the foster care system, and reaching out and assisting those who are adopting children.We are involved in everything that has to do with helping children and families find hope in an otherwise hopeless situation. We would be humbled if you chose Imagine Foundation for Kids as your nonprofit of choice on Giving Tuesday.All donations will go towards helping children.
I was just introduced to this article, and it really hit home. Anxiety is everywhere!! Many people try to blame the world of smartphones and electronics, but the issue has always been around, it’s just that today’s technology has brought it out into a more open arena.
I have copied a few major parts of the article in this post, but I am also providing the link to the original post so that you may visit their site and read the rest. Teachers, foster parents, counselors, really anyone who works with children needs to read this.
Why Are More American Teenagers Than Ever Suffering From Severe Anxiety?
Parents, therapists and schools are struggling to figure out whether helping anxious teenagers means protecting them or pushing them to face their fears.
***Over the last decade, anxiety has overtaken depression as the most common reason college students seek counseling services. In its annual survey of students, the American College Health Association found a significant increase — to 62 percent in 2016 from 50 percent in 2011 — of undergraduates reporting “overwhelming anxiety” in the previous year. Surveys that look at symptoms related to anxiety are also telling. In 1985, the Higher Education Research Institute at U.C.L.A. began asking incoming college freshmen if they “felt overwhelmed by all I had to do” during the previous year. In 1985, 18 percent said they did. By 2010, that number had increased to 29 percent. Last year, it surged to 41 percent.
Those numbers — combined with a doubling of hospital admissions for suicidal teenagers over the last 10 years, with the highest rates occurring soon after they return to school each fall — come as little surprise to high school administrators across the country, who increasingly report a glut of anxious, overwhelmed students. While it’s difficult to tease apart how much of the apparent spike in anxiety is related to an increase in awareness and diagnosis of the disorder, many of those who work with young people suspect that what they’re seeing can’t easily be explained away. “We’ve always had kids who didn’t want to come in the door or who were worried about things,” says Laurie Farkas, who was until recently director of student services for the Northampton public schools in Massachusetts. “But there’s just been a steady increase of severely anxious students.”
***Anxiety is the most common mental-health disorder in the United States, affecting nearly one-third of both adolescents and adults, according to the National Institute of Mental Health. But unlike depression, with which it routinely occurs, anxiety is often seen as a less serious problem.
“Anxiety is easy to dismiss or overlook, partially because everyone has it to some degree,” explained Philip Kendall, director of the Child and Adolescent Anxiety Disorders Clinic at Temple University in Philadelphia. It has an evolutionary purpose, after all; it helps us detect and avoid potentially dangerous situations. Highly anxious people, though, have an overactive fight-or-flight response that perceives threats where there often are none.
But sometimes there are good reasons to feel anxious. For many young people, particularly those raised in abusive families or who live in neighborhoods besieged by poverty or violence, anxiety is a rational reaction to unstable, dangerous circumstances. At the Youth Anxiety Center’s clinic in the Washington Heights neighborhood of Manhattan, which serves mostly poor and working-class Hispanic youth, teenagers would object to the definition of anxiety I heard often at Mountain Valley: “The overestimation of danger and the underestimation of our ability to cope.”
***It’s tempting to blame helicopter parents with their own anxiety issues for that pressure (and therapists who work with teenagers sometimes do), but several anxiety experts pointed to an important shift in the last few years. “Teenagers used to tell me, ‘I just need to get my parents off my back,’ ” recalls Madeline Levine, a founder of Challenge Success, a Stanford University-affiliated nonprofit that works on school reform and student well-being. “Now so many students have internalized the anxiety. The kids at this point are driving themselves crazy.”
***Though there are cultural differences in how this kind of anguish manifests, there’s considerable overlap among teenagers from different backgrounds. Many are anxious about school and how friends or teachers perceive them. Some obsess about family conflicts. Teenagers with OCD tend to worry excessively about what foods they should eat, diseases they might contract or whatever happens to be in the news that week. Stephanie Eken, a psychiatrist and the regional medical director for Rogers Behavioral Health, which runs several teenage-anxiety outpatient programs across the country and an inpatient program in Wisconsin, told me that in the last few years she has heard more kids than ever worry about terrorism. “They wonder about whether it’s safe to go to a movie theater,” she said.
So many people want to help, but many just don’t know how, or think that only large donations of items or money will be accepted- but that’s so not true!
My amazing friend had a get together this weekend and asked everyone to bring something for the girls ranch. Y’all she is in the DFW area, not even close to Houston, but she and her friends wanted to help us get ready for the girls that will be here soon.
Time, items, or even a $5 donation will add up!
Never underestimate the power of kindness and blessing others.
This is a must read article for anyone that is involved with children in the adoption or foster care area.
The Role of Shame in Adoption and Foster Children– Robert Hafetz, MS
January 11, 2017 via LinkedIn
“Human beings have 4 crucial needs; the need to feel (connected), that one (counts), is (capable), and has (courage) to handle life’s adversities. These needs have been named The Crucial Cs. by Dr. Betty Lou Bettner. When adoptee’s behavior becomes a problem or arouses concern it is to acquire one or more of these crucial Cs.”
Last fall both my husband and I received an email from our adoption agency. The email started something like this, “I know it is five, but we thought of you guys. Let us know as soon as possible.” Attached was a file with the names, ages, and a small blurb about each child. I sat frozen, staring at the monitor at my teacher desk in my classroom while the high school teenagers carried out their task of discussing plot elements of Ray Bradbury’s There Will Come Soft Rains.
Five? FIVE? Ha! Right. I was stretching it trying to convince Robert to consider three. There was no way he would even think about five. I closed the email, refocused, stood and continued on with my daily duties as a high school English teacher.
As I was driving on the commute home, Robert asked me what I thought about the email. “What email?” I asked sincerely.
“From Allison.” He looked at me in surprise. “About the kids.”
“Oh. Yeah. I saw it.”
“What did you think?”
“Robert, you won’t even consider three, much less five. I didn’t read it.”
And for a moment, I wondered why I didn’t read it. “Will you read it to me?”
After Robert read the email and description of the children, we discussed the impossible. Our concerns with adopting a sibling group were normal; we wanted to provide for our children and give them opportunities to be successful academically, spiritually, athletically, musically, and/or any way that would be specifically beneficial to their needs and/or talents. We also needed a bigger vehicle no matter how many children we agreed on adopting.
Were we really considering five kids?
At that moment a heavy weigh+t of Catholic guilt came upon me. Okay, maybe it was the Holy Spirit. Regardless, there was one question that kept surfacing: Who were we to question God?
What if God’s plan was for these to be our children? What if we said no? I shared my thoughts with Robert. My husband was experiencing the same calling. Suddenly, we both were very humbled. We didn’t know how we would be able to provide for them, we didn’t know how we would be able to transport them, and we didn’t know how God thought we were ready for five kids. All we knew at that moment in our Monte Carlo on our commute home was that we were suppose to say yes to God. All we knew was to trust in God to provide for our needs. His grace knows no bounds.
***Daphne Pesina is a high school English teacher in Texas. She will be adding more family adventures to her blog soon.***
Stevens and Pruett Foundation has aligned with Imagine Foundation For Kids to create homes for girls at-risk in a faith based environment, with an emphasis on life skills, education, and vocational training in a family environment with rescued horses.
You are going to love this story from Thanksgiving weekend!
Over the weekend, I was honored to attend a ceremony honoring one of my favorite kids, Davis Spangler, from Allen, Texas. I love stories of kids looking after and having a heart for other kids less fortunate.
Over two and a half years ago, I was contacted by this young man. He had been researching projects for his Eagle Scout honor. The project that caught his eye was a story in the media about foster children moving from place to place carrying all they had in trash bags. I agreed to meet Davis and his Dad. Along for the ride, were my two oldest grandchildren that were about the same age as Davis.
I remember instantly liking how passionately he felt the need to do something to help these kids! He asked if I would sponsor him on behalf of Azleway. His goal was to collect as much luggage, duffel bags, and backpacks as he could for his project and give them to the kids at Azleway. I do not think either of us knew what a daunting task that would become. Over the two year period, he would sometimes get frustrated because he had not found as much luggage as he wanted. I am sure there were times when he would have liked to quit. Thankfully, he did not quit! I received an email from Davis requesting a date for the delivery of the luggage.
I still remember when he and his Dad delivered it all to Azleway. I met them at Azleway’s Grand Prairie location. I could not believe the staggering amount of luggage packed into luggage that he had collected. That luggage did not last long in that warehouse. The minute the word was out……the luggage was moved to Tyler and handed out to the kids.
On October 21, 2016, I received an email from Davis asking if I remembered him. I replied I could never forget that sweet face. Along with the email, was an invitation for his Eagle Scout Court of Honor Ceremony to be held at his church in Allen, Texas. I replied I would be honored to attend. When I arrived, I could not believe he was a head taller than me, and was the more mature and accomplished version of the Davis I had met in our first meeting. I awarded him a pin on behalf of Danny Tiblet’s Foster Care Movement! If you look closely to the right of his Eagle Scout badge, you will see the pin. I don’t know of a better kid or a more deserving kid for this award!
The ceremony was filled with emotion. His family had travelled from all over the country to see Davis receive his award and be called to the “Eagle’s Nest” forever and all time. By the way, his Dad is an Eagle Scout as well. I learned during the ceremony that less than two percent of all scouts become Eagle Scouts. Letters from President George Bush, his Dad, and many other dignitaries from all over the country sent certificates and letters of blessings. Quite a way to spend a night during Thanksgiving!
Azleway thanks you, Davis! The kids thank you! And, I thank you so much for all you have done on behalf of this nonprofit. I am going to keep my eye on this kid! He has a great future in store for him!
Imagine Foundation for Kids is saddened to hear of the passing of Jim Pruett.
Mr. Pruett and Mark Stevens were the founders of Stevens and Pruett Ranch- a non-profit home in the Houston area dedicated to helping kids and animals who needed a home and family to love them. Many of you may remember them from their popular Stevens and Pruett radio show. In lieu of flowers, the Pruett family has asked for donations to be made to the Stevens and Pruett Ranch to help cover cost of care for the animals that are presently out there, and help with the ranch’s home renovation, which will be open soon to house girls in need.
Donations can be made at: