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A mother reflects on her son’s journey with CDI

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When Marisa dropped her son Andreas off at CDI’s St. Clair Gardens location five years ago for his first day of camp, little did she know how much their lives would change with that one small step.

“Once Andreas finished at Camp Wimodausis, we moved on to the Stop Now And Plan (SNAP®) Boys program, followed by SNAPP for parents, a parent problem-solving group, which I ended up completing twice.” Marisa says. “I loved the program so much, I just had to do it again.”

SNAP Boys is a family-focused, early intervention program for boys ages 6 to 11 who are engaging in aggressive or antisocial behaviour. For 13 weeks, the boys meet weekly to learn self-control, problem-solving and emotion-regulation skills. Every week, their parents come together at the same time for group sessions where they learn effective child management strategies.

For Marisa and Andreas, these group sessions and the support they received from the SNAP team were the safety net they needed to handle life’s challenges.

“The role-playing activities and joint sessions between the boys and parents’ groups have helped us develop some great coping techniques and strategies,” Marisa says. “Andreas now knows what he needs to do to get through a difficult situation without losing his cool, which has made a big difference in his behaviour.”

Andreas is now a SNAP Leader in Training, a program that allows SNAP graduates to continue integrating SNAP into their lives, while building life, leadership and employment skills. One of these experiences includes our summer Leaders in Training (LIT) program with Camp Wimodausis, which provides youth with meaningful opportunities to enhance their leadership skills.

Marisa also intends to continue participating in SNAP programming for as long as she can. “After all these years, and life’s ups and downs, I know that CDI will always be there for me,” Marisa says.

To learn more about our SNAP programs, click here