(photo that appeared on FB)
On Wednesday, May 4, 2016, Edgar Wiggins, National Family Resiliency Center board member and a long-time NFRC peer counselor, and Meghna Sreenivas, student and NFRC teen peer counselor testified before the Howard County Council on behalf of NFRC. Pictured above, L to R: Edgar Wiggins, NFRC Co-Founder and Executive Director Risa Garon and Meghna Sreenivas.
”Peer counselors are the true gifts that NFRC gives to families in our community. They volunteer many hours of time to reach out, share their stories and support others going through family transitions. To have them stand up and speak about the need for mental health issues to be addressed is, indeed, a powerful testimony, ” said Garon.
Meghna is a student peer counselor who will be leaving for college in the fall. In her testimony she described her life before NFRC, the help NFRC gave her, and her inspiration to become a peer counselor with NFRC.
An athlete, student and scholar, Meghna shared her experience of how life shifted when she her parents went through a divorce. Not only did the family dynamic change, she had to change schools, and homes, which resulted in changes in her relationships with her friends and her parents. She also felt an added responsibility for her younger brother since he was going through this difficult time with her.
NFRC helped Meghna to navigate and process these changes through its KidsConnex program, along with the support of peer counselors and programs. Having support from the organization allowed Meghna to better understand her own family’s transition, and provided the tools she needed to address challenges and grow. Now, using these same tools, she serves as a peer counselor for NFRC’s KidsConnex program, co-parenting seminars, and other groups.
NFRC acts as an anchor during the often difficult circumstances of separation, divorce and other family transitions by providing trained professionals who understand divorce and who can help all family members. NFRC is a place in which children and teens are empowered to assume appropriate roles and are given the confidence that they need. And for separated and divorced parents, NFRC offers co-parenting programs, support groups and counseling to help them better cope, heal and navigate through the process. The Howard County Council was able to witness the positive impact that NFRC continues to provide to the county.