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With Love, to Help a Child

Take children seriously. Even if your child is 6'2" and 190 lbs, he is still a young person and does not have enough life experience to tell the difference between small problems, serious ones, or to realize the marvelous healing value of time. What is triviality to an adult is often unbearably painful to a child.

Listen with your heart, not just with your ears. Put down what you're doing, make eye contact, be 100% with the child.

Participate in your child's life. Turn off the TV — a child is a better investment than football, the evening news, or a game of golf.

Give children time, praise, encouragement, consideration and respect.

Honor your child so he will know he is honorable. Hug your child so he will know he is huggable.

Confide in him so he can learn how to confide in you. Tell him about your plans, your hopes, and your dreams so he can learn to tell you about his.

Tell him of the times when you feel lonely, rejected, betrayed and how you work your way through it so he can learn how to do the same.

Ask him about his own hopes, conflicts, fears, and respect them. Don't trivialize them.

Teach him that loss and loneliness are part of every human life. Help him understand that though one friend may choose to walk away, there are others who look happy on the outside, but who are also lonely inside hoping that someone like him will come into their life.

Be genuine and honest with your child so he can learn to be genuine and honest with you.

Consider introducing The Yellow Ribbon Program® to the youth in your life. If only one child is saved, it will be worth it! Show that you care!

What is the Yellow Ribbon Program®... how does it work?

The Yellow Ribbon Program® is a pro-active, preventative outreach program. This program distributes yellow ribbon cards, and gives presentations and workshops about suicide awareness and prevention. These events are given to schools, churches, youth groups and organizations. The seminars address that although there are good, established post suicide programs, there is a critical need for a prevention program. This program is working with local agencies and is saving precious lives.

The Yellow Ribbon Cards are:

Pocket sized cards that empower and encourage teens to seek help in times of crisis. Cards that help give a 'voice' to youth who otherwise might be lost to suicide.

Teens who have attempted suicide have told us that they were in such a state at the time they tried to kill themselves that they couldn't, in many cases, really call out....they could only scream a silent scream!

The program is two fold.

  1. Get the cards to youth!
  2. Make the public aware of the card so they may respond appropriately

How does it work?

A youth gives a card to someone they trust when they are at a time of crisis or need to talk. The back of the card tells the person receiving it how to respond and what to do. They are alerted to the youth's need for intervention. The message the presentations and workshops give is a message of hope; that people care and there are places to go for help.

How to get the card:

Call the Canadian Foundation office to request cards, ribbons, brochures and information packets. Personalized cards in memory of a youth and/or with local information — i.e.: hot lines, crisis numbers etc. may also be obtained.

Costs:

Cards are free to youth and available at a nominal cost to organizations, schools and groups.

How to distribute:

Display the cards in easy access locations so youth can get them anytime without embarrassment. Many schools place the display container in the main office, counseling center and common areas. Cards are also distributed at presentations and workshops along with the message that there are people who care.

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