A mother holds the arm of her young son, who's on her backOur ministry includes a number of programs that offer help to children and families in need. Recently, one family found help in three of our programs.

Linda is a single mother who wants only the best for her four-year-old son, Grayson. One day, Linda told a friend that she needed help creating a nurturing environment for her son. Soon after, Linda was referred to Thornwell. She enrolled Grayson in the 4K program, while the two of them also began participating in the Strengthening Families program.

Mother and Son Learn New Skills

In the 4K program, Grayson began learning how to follow instructions, cooperate with his classmates, and other skills that he would need in kindergarten. In Strengthening Families, Linda learned parenting skills that began to increase the confidence she needed to raise her young son.

The Strengthening Families sessions came to a close, but Linda wanted to continue learning parenting skills in a one-on-one environment. Linda heard about the Building Families program and eagerly signed up.

Mother and Son Keep Learning

Grayson made considerable progress in the 4K program, but was still very quiet, shy, and did not want to follow his mother’s instructions. When she asked him to put his toys away, he refused. When she told him that snack time was over and to throw his Pop Tart away, he’d cry at the top of his lungs and stomp on the floor. Grayson used the bathroom sporadically, but needed structure to learn potty-training. Even worse, Grayson grunted at people instead of talking.

The family specialist in the Building Families program taught Grayson’s mom how to reward and praise Grayson’s good behaviors. Linda showed commitment to the process and tracked Grayson’s successes on a chart. The family specialist provided stickers and rewards for mom to use in the home. The family specialist went to Grayson’s school and watched how he followed his teachers’ instructions. The family specialist helped mom and son learn to interact better. Grayson learned to use his words instead of grunting. And, after just eight weeks into the program, he is potty-trained, uses his words to identify needs, and has learned his colors and the names of animals.

Mother and Son Make Progress

Grayson continues to work on following his mother’s instructions and is more consistent now than he’s ever been. Grayson doesn’t have as many tantrums as he had in the past, and he responds to his mother’s encouragement. Linda told the family specialist that the greatest gift she has received by participating in the programs is feeling more confident parenting her son.

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