It is our privilege to share stories with you that highlight the impact that exceptional care has on each child, but also what it means to the family as they witness their child find healing and hope for the future. These accomplishments are a win for everyone – the child, the family, our organization and the community at-large. Please read the powerful remarks below from a mother and father to our Academy Principal, Nancy Macnamara, M.Ed.
Dear Ms. McNamara,
Last summer our son, Michael, stood alone in darkness poised at the edge of the deep abyss of depression. After three hospitalizations, the danger of Michael’s situation was immediately recognized by professionals at the San Diego Center for Children. In June, Michael was quickly accepted as a Center resident on the same day he was assessed. Through intensive medical and psychological treatment, Michael was able to step back from that dark and deep abyss. He began to accept the care and concern of others and, most importantly, he realized that he was deserving of that care.
Thanks to family therapy at the Center, Michael and my wife and I have learned coping strategies to combat Michael’s depression. We recognize it as a chronic disease. We understand that, like diabetes, depression requires daily monitoring. Michael’s therapy at the Center has allowed him to distinguish good days from bad days and, critically, Michael has learned techniques to make bad days better. Additionally, through the efforts of the teachers and staff at the Academy, Michael has been able to continue his education over the course of his recovery. His accomplishments at the Academy have contributed significantly to his recovery. Michael also has excelled in a cooking class, worked with a therapy dog named Jerry, and held an internship scooping ice cream. Michael’s progress has been profound. He has gained the respect of many other Center residents and has been able to assist residential staff, who use his calming influence as a role model.
We’re very proud of all Michael has been able to accomplish over the last 6 months with the help of Center program leaders, teachers, medical and clinical experts, counselors and residential staff. This brings us to today when you’ll hear about plans to transition Michael safely back home. You’ll hear more about his progress at the Center and plans to continue his treatment and therapy from his new Wraparound team. But before we do that, I want to conclude by saying that there are simply no words that begin to express the gratitude that my wife and I feel for the care Michael’s received at the Center. We also are profoundly grateful to Michael’s IEP team for making his successful stay at the Center possible. Thank you all for your continued and unwavering support, and for bringing our beloved son back to us from the edge of the abyss.
*The child’s name and image has been replaced in order to protect their identity.