WEST FRANKFORT – Centerstone announced Monday they have began distribution of 50 family strengthening kits thanks to a $750 grant from the Southern Illinois Leadership Institute, a new initiative of Southern Illinois Community Foundation.
Officials said in a press release the purpose of the kits is to bring family units in need together, to strengthen the family bond, and have a positive impact on the family as a whole and especially the children.
Kits contain items such as cooking, art, and gardening supplies as well as Centerstone’s comic book series about “Spark,” Centerstone’s teen superhero, whose stories told in comics can help other teens understand and deal with situations they may find themselves in.
“The kits are intended for families to do something fun and productive together. Cookies, painting, and planting are all great hobbies to have and do as a family,” Diedra Hopes, Centerstone’s Family Services clinical manager said. “You can learn a lot of valuable skills by doing these types of activities.”
Centerstone’s Family Services staff purchased and assembled the kits and began distribution to area families. Family Services employs Family Resource Developers (FRDs), a trained parent who has lived experience and who can relate to their peer’s story and journey. FRDs also can offer direction to help peer parents navigate various child serving systems and support peers in their decisions and choices they make for their family.
After parent peer consultation and completion of any recommended sessions, families are given a family strengthening kit.
“The Family Resource Developers are excited to give these kits to families,” Preston Simpson, Centerstone’s Family Services coordinator said. “These kits are another way we are all working together to deliver care that changes people’s lives.”