A part of our job at Eagle Village is teaching kids skills, thought processes, and emotional responses they haven’t had before. Many of our abuse and neglect cases bring us kids that haven’t experienced healthy home environments and simply don’t know anything different.
Providing residential facilities that mimic a healthy home helps. Kids have chores, participate in making meals and eat around a large table together like a family. Staff model appropriate boundaries and demonstrate a new way to handle situations.
Seeing our kids internalize and then begin to exhibit healthier behaviors is always an exciting moment.
“One of the residents was having a really bad emotional morning,” an Eagle Village Youth Specialist said. “About four or five other residents were around. Instead of blowing up themselves, they surprised me. All of them pitched in trying to help the resident in distress… the staff fell back and observed some of the seeds we had been trying to plant.”
When kids begin to think about others and show compassion we call that PROGRESS!
Therapy, both traditional and activity based, also helps break down unseen barriers. Each house of kids has their own Eagle Village Therapist that works with them directly. They work through past traumatic experiences through games, talking, and learning coping skills. Then our Experiential Specialists challenge the kids individually and as a whole house. It helps them recognize their own strength and resilience, learn to trust other people again, and teaches them how to work with others.
“Traditionally these boys struggle during group building- lots of cussing, blowups, and refusals,” an Eagle Village Experiential Specialist explained after a session with a particular boys’ house. “But this week ALL the boys not only participated, they were positive and helpful to each other. Additionally, they set a goal that was challenging and once they got to the goal they wanted to go further!”
Go further. That really sums up what we want for the kids we serve.
That they will rise above their past to go further than what they’ve known.
That they will dream about their futures and then go further to reach those dreams.
And that their education and their journey to wholeness will go further than they originally thought possible.
“Everyone thinks they can’t accomplish what they want…. But I can!” – Angie, former resident