Girls Turn to Facilitators in Crisis

June 3, 2009 at 3:25 am 2 comments

Imagine yourself as a teen girl.  Now imagine yourself  homeless, pregnant,  depressed, living with an alcoholic parent, experiencing intimidation by a group of peers, or being sexually abused by a coach, or any potentially dangerous circumstance.  Now, imagine having no adult you can trust or talk to.

This scene is nothing new. Adolescent girls have faced these kinds of circumstances throughout time and across cultures.

Now imagine you’ve joined a Girls Circle group.  In addition to the general comfort you find with the girls, you notice the facilitator is consistently respectful, welcoming, empathic and supports a  safe environment.

Soon enough you realize you can trust her. You take the risk, stay after group and ask if you can talk to her.

This is exactly what two teens in a western state did just a couple of weeks ago – they approached their facilitator after group.  One told her she was depressed and needed help.  The other revealed that she was afraid to go home because her mother was likely to be drinking and she feared a fire or a fall at any time.

Now, they have support and encouragement, someone on their side,  who assisted them to develop a plan for their next steps-  speaking to  the family or community members who could comfort and protect, assist and embrace, or inform and connect.

A 2007 Girls Circle National Research Study found significant increases in girls communicating with adults. See http://www.girlscircle.com/research.aspx

Props to these and all girls for taking the risk to talk to your facilitators when you know you need a trustworthy adult.  Props to all of you Girls Circle facilitators for being there for the girls in your groups.  Resiliency is in the connection.

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