Setting the Scene: Expectations
*Parental / parent means anyone who take a loving caregiver role.
Thank you for inviting us to be a part of your group. Our focus is on helping our clients grow and succeed. Because they are connected so deeply and immutably to you, this will sometimes mean we need to interact with you. Just as they are part of you, you are part of them, and we are here to help.
In the pursuit of those goals, we do have expectations for parental interaction. Meeting these expectations will, we feel, better help your child of 6 weeks, 26 or 62 years best meet their highest potential.
When a child / adult's ability to be empowered to learn to advocate for themselves, learn new skills and increase independence in different areas is a focus then opportunities to practice make growth easier. Parents have a vital role in starting this work and as new life phases are coming for your child they are also coming for you as the parent.
These parental expectations may be new or old news, they have been fashioned out of many years of experiences with our own daughter, many different families and providers input to try and develop a foundation where we can work as a supportive team where all needs are considered and with an attempt to be met. Please know, that just as we support your child and try and respond to their feedback we will support you as well and try and be open to your ideas to help your child to find and enjoy their full potential. You have been, you are, and you will always be an unreplaceable part of your child's life.
Support your child's growth and independence, let them do what they can, help them with what they can't. Support your kid. Even in ways you don't understand.
Benefits: supporting independence mean that your child is able to increase their ability and you get to learn how to support them using different strategies that are tailored to your lifestyle.
Details: Support independence, this means allowing your child to exist in their proximal zone of development. This is the area in between being able to do something without help and not being able to do something even with help. We want your child to be working on items where they can succeed when they receive appropriate support.
Consequences: of not supporting independence is hindrance of growth, your child will not be able to continue to develop and may learn mal-adaptive skills that can actively work against them having a meaningful life such as learned helplessness.
Respect your child and help advocate for who they are and what they need.
Kids can be strange, as are we all. Love them anyway.
Benefits: help them learn to advocate for themselves and learn that their thoughts are valid and valued by one of the most important people they know, you.
Details: Your child is learning to develop new relationships and skills. It is important to speak respectfully when talking to your child or about them. Be aware of your child's preference of how you talk, some individuals do not like being talked about in front of them and therefore such conversations should wait for a private moment. Concentrate on their strengths and be cautious of how their areas of needs are spoken about. There are times when it is not beneficial to discuss what your child does "wrong" and concerns regarding those needs to wait for a private moment. There is also respect around your child's likes and dislikes, their relationships with extended family members (especially in families where there is a divorce) or as your child ages and are their own adult. Respect is not limited to these examples. PLEASE MAKE SURE WE KNOW THESE TOO, AS WE ARE NEW AND DON’T WANT TO ACCIDENTALY STEP ON ANY TOES. :)
Consequences: of not providing respect to your child may result in your child being guarded during sessions, declining to be open with their provider or being resistive to sessions due to discomfort over disagreeing with a caregiver or feeling disheartened due to the conversation and wording of the conversation.
If you don't have anything nice to say in front of your child, don't say anything at all; keep it positive.
Be kind. Even when you are frustrated or hurting.
Benefits: help your child develop his strengths and concentrate their effort on learning new, helpful skills without being distracted be unneeded negativity.
Details: We have a very firm, if you have nothing nice to say, say nothing at all. There are many different times that this applies, and it ties in directly with respecting your child. *If we do need to address something that you feel fall into this area, let you and the provider talk first so that thoughts and plans can be organized before presentation to your child. Here are two different samples of this: A grandmother comes to a family session and begins saying all the things that her grandsons do wrong bringing tears to their eyes when they were practicing how to play nicely together or a father visits his grown daughter's session where she is practicing self-respect and learning what a healthy relationship is but he starts talking about how horrible his estranged wife is.
Consequences: of not practicing "if you have noting nice to say, say nothing at all" is an immediate dis-invite to the session. You will need to leave the session right away and a conversation between caregiver and provider will take place at the end of the session. If this is a repetitive situation then a conference with the case manager, provider, and parent will need to take place. This is a serious, no negotiation expectation due to the fact that his particular input from a loved one can undermine all service goals and cause serious emotional consequences to your child.
Spectrum of parental engagement, goal dependent, 'consultation & review only' all the way to 'total engagement'. Parents come in different sizes. So does your engagement.
Benefits: your child will be able to receive a session that is truly catered to their needs and supported by you, their day to day companion in life - this will help them make a faster rate of improvement that if they had to do it by themselves or face the discomfort of doing it against you.
Details: Understand that at times your child may need privacy during sessions, this is highly true when your child is an adult and may be exploring skills or conversations and points of views that they are not comfortable in sharing with their caregivers. On the other side of privacy, your child may find you a distraction and unable to focus while you are present. This is all on a case by case basis with a large section. As you will see below, for some families it is the exact opposite. Session reviews are always available if parents / caregivers have a consent to share. Please be aware that even with a consent to share there is some private information that your child may not wish to be shared and providers will protect your child's right to privacy.
Consequences: of not providing privacy when needs is that sessions may not be productive due to a child worrying about what their parent / caregiver is thinking or will say about the session. Children can worry about interruptions from the parent or rely heavily on the parent / caregiver to do the work for them.
All the way to…
Details: Understand that your child needs your active participation in their sessions. Depending on your child's plan this may range from observation without input during the session, observation with conversation, or direct involvement with your child while you and they practice with your provider the current goal or skill. All parents, caregivers should plan on the last 10 to 20 minutes of each session to be consulting time to review the current session (which will include a written summary), the days since the last session, the home suggestion from the last session, ideas for home use till the next session, and any questions the parent / caregiver has. If you have many things to talk about we can also start the session with consulting. As you discuss things with your provider, please be honest with your feedback and questions, what is going well, how are services working for you, etc.
Consequences: of not providing active participation and honesty is that your child's program may not be written or implemented in the way that best benefits your child's needs and your needs on a day to day basis.
Resources and ideas for home use are for day to day benefit and increase of skill use to you and your child. A little each day makes a lot of difference. Practice the skills with your kid.
Benefits: extra support in helping your child experience success with their goals on a daily basis rather just during a session. However, we all know that life can be very fully, if you struggle (or just don't like them) with the suggestions, share that with your provider so that perhaps they can be reworked or paused for the time being. We all need to understand that we can't do everything and that there are times that our best is enough.
Details: Parental follow through on suggestions is vital to success of a program. Suggestions will vary from provider to provider and program to program. Depending on the details of your child's plan you may receive suggestions every base, occasionally, or not at all. If you do receive suggestions there is a reason why, if you don't understand why the suggestion is important ask your provider. There will also be opportunities to receive other resources such as knowledge of local fairs or events that you may be interested in.
Consequences: of not providing adequate follow through on suggestions may reduce your child's ability to gain, improve, maintain, or generalize a skill. There are times when children, both adult and minors, will master a skill during a session but will not do it day to day without the provider present. By practicing on a regular basis on how to use skills at home and in the community your child is more likely to have broad, solid, success.
Get the most out of your session, no sessions if someone is sick, and be prepared to the best of your ability. Be prepared, expect curveballs.
Benefits: you and your child are able to get your questions answered because you have them ready and the most benefit is received because you can spend more time on the priority goals that you choose.
Details: Session preparation includes but is not limited to,
- Making sure your child and any other household members are free from illness 24 hours before a session. If anyone is ill the session needs to be canceled unless you and the provider have made specific other arrangements due to some of our client being extremely immunocompromised
- Making sure that your child has all their physical needs met (unless these are specific goals that they are working on) such as being clean, fed, well rested and comfortable to the best of your ability and theirs
- Making sure that if you are going to cancel or miss a session you alert your provider as soon as possible to avoid a no show fee being charged directly to you
- Making sure that there is clear communication on where the session will be, childcare, Mom's house, Dad's house, Aunties, the pool, etc.
Consequences: of not preparing for the session is that your child may not have as much time to focus on the priorities on their plan as you would like.
Safety, weather / hazardous road cancellations, schedule changes, and holidays can all impact sessions.
Benefits: you and your child are more likely to be able to maintain steady progress because you will be aware of when you need a break and when you are able to push for growth.
Details: Safety and well-being first. It is important to understand that safety and well-being is essential to success. This includes the safety and well-being of yourself, your child and your provider. Therefore,
- Holidays are encouraged for families and providers and this may impact session availability
- Providers schedules and availability vary and change, if you need a change make a request as soon as possible so that your provider can try and accommodate your request. Services are not guaranteed on demand, we all must work together to try and accommodate as many needs as possible.
- If the roads are hazardous sessions may be canceled or rearranged
- Traveling from place to place and unforeseen happenings may delay or cancel a session
- *****IF YOU ARE RECEIVING SERVICES THAT REQUIRE A PROVIDER TO BE EARLY DUE TO IT BEING AN ESSENTIAL SERVICE, SUCH AS RESPITE TO PICK A CHILD UP FROM SCHOOL YOU MUST ARRANGE THIS WITH YOUR PROVIDER SO THEY CAN ARRANGE FOR EXTRA DRIVE TIME IN ORDER TO TRY AND PREVENT ANY DIRE INTERRUPTIONS.
- If you are ever in a space where your safety or well-being or that of your child's is in jeopardy, please reach out and we will work to find resources to help meet your needs.
Consequences: of not keeping in mind the importance of safety and well-being is mismanaged plans that don't meet needs, provider and families burning out by trying to do too much, needs not being met, or injury.
Cooperation and Communication is Required for Success for All
- It is your right as the client / family member, and as such, your responsibility, to communicate to your provider the type of program you are seeking.
- Communication is required to happen in a respectful manner, which includes a prohibition of yelling, cursing, unwelcome physical contact, etc. with provider or other agent who works with Angels Service LLC.
If you have specific techniques or programming that you would like to see, please communicate this and it will be part of the service plan.
2/18/18 @ 4:43pm by Serena Akinahew