Creating lasting impact for childrens’ mental health

Discovering lessons, inspiration and hope in the stories of healing

Across our community, there are stories of compassion and resilience that showcase what is possible when we unite to nurture children, giving them the skills to live into a brighter future. Whether it’s healing in the aftermath of trauma, surviving isolation of a pandemic or the development of a child through every stage of life.

Finding hope along life’s journey

At age 16, Jon was beginning to discover more about his identity and the young adult he was becoming. He started to explore his trans identity, while working to educate his mother on pronouns, trans rights and how to navigate transphobia, homophobia and bias against sexual and gender identity. When it became harder to manage,… Read more »

Sense of safety smooths out stress

For 3-year-old Sophia and her mom, a single working parent with long shifts, the last year was more than they could manage. Everyday pressures along with the pandemic created overwhelming stress for her family. Sophia’s mom and caregivers sought help after a particularly scary moment where Sophia ran away from her day care center. Recognizing… Read more »

Worry gets a name and takes a backseat

Ten-year-old Phoebe can now put the future in perspective and manage through the worries of today using the techniques she learned from her Washburn Center therapist. That wasn’t always the case as severe anxiety created difficult days and often affected her ability to sleep and find peace even in the safety of her own room…. Read more »

A kick start and a safe spot

Tapping into their inherent strengths with the help of their therapist, Ollie’s family built new skills that will sustain them through the good times — and the hard ones. Ollie’s world was shattered one night as alarms alerted him and his family that their home was filling with smoke. Once the smoke cleared and the… Read more »

Art, access and adaptation

Like you and I, Ellie’s life was turned upside down in 2020 with the impacts of coronavirus. Ellie already struggled at school and was only attending half days. She would often get frustrated with her peers and would get angry with her teachers and parents – causing stress for everyone. Adding to that, her family… Read more »

Boosting progress and resiliency with fun and play

Over the past year, 8-year-old Anna would find joy in play therapy. Even then, she could get wiggly and shout, “That’s enough! That’s enough!” when a caregiver or therapist would offer help to express feelings and needs in an in-person session. With the onset of the pandemic and shift to telehealth, Anna was pushed to… Read more »

Pathfinding through a tough transition

Normally, 14-year-old Isaiah cherishes summertime visits with his grandparents in Prior Lake; it’s long days filled with picnics, play and refreshing dips in the lake. This year, if you ask Isaiah about his summer trip to G’mas and he’s a little more sensitive. Isaiah’s parents made the decision to send him from their Minneapolis home… Read more »

Healing work in the aftermath of community trauma

Families, like 6-year-old Malia’s, witnessed firsthand community violence, shootings and burning of neighborhood businesses following George Floyd’s murder. Living just a few houses away from where George Floyd died, the family describes the time as “chaos, especially at night.” When the community around them turns unstable and scary, children often turn to harsh words, big… Read more »