Latinx Parent Support for Positive Youth Development

Updated: Nov 22, 2021

by Mario Núñez, Project Associate


The role of parents/guardians is paramount in the development of youth. A network of support provides a necessary tool in helping youth development.


Considering this need, we are happy to announce that we now provide a Latinx Parent Support Group which meets again on November 20th, 2 - 4 PM at Oasis Mobile Home Park located at 7500 Elmhurst Rd, Des Plaines 60018. This new, non-clinical group meets monthly and discusses various issues related to supporting Latinx youth and parents residing in the Elk Grove Village community.


The Latinx Parent Support Group is presented by KYC staff Mario Nunez. Mario works on our junior high after-school program Teen REACH that focuses on providing services to students who need extra academic, social, or behavioral support. The Latinx Parent Support Group will also be partnering with Elk Grove High School Counselor Raymundo Galarza to further discuss important discussion topics parents are facing around the Elk Grove area.


Important discussion topics include behavioral issues in middle school and high school as well as the impact of gang violence and depression affecting children and teens. Now more than ever, our community needs resources and strategies to address challenges, and we hope our Latinx Parent Support Group is the beginning of a lot of positive change.


The phrase, “it takes a village to raise a child”, is more relevant now than in previous years. After almost two years of isolation brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic, anxiety and social behavior issues have drastically increased. More and more schools are struggling to deal with the stress being put on students in a post-pandemic environment.


There has been an increase in violence and emotional distress among the CPYD Coalition service area. In fact, research conducted by the U.S. Department of Education, this aggressive and generally disruptive behavior has increased among schools across the country.


Furthermore, we have encountered many difficulties in supporting the youth within the school system and those same difficulties are being faced within the household. Parents share the same struggles as the schooling system but it adds more stress onto the parents as they do not have similar resources in coping with these situations. This reasoning further increases the necessity of creating support networks for parents in maintaining positive youth development.


There are many difficulties faced by the already marginalized Latinx community. The U.S. Department of Education has reported that the Covid-19 pandemic has increased the gap in educational opportunities and increased the level of stress for students that are learning English. Latinx students have one of the highest levels of feeling isolated and lonely in schools post-pandemic.


As Latinx students face further difficulties in an education system that already is difficult, community support is needed. Research strongly demonstrates that Latinx youth benefit from both informal and formal systems of support. A community support network allows for an informal form of support that works as a strength for students in reaching academic achievements that are already difficult for Latinx communities. A support group creates a closer bond between parent and student that would benefit greatly in developing positive youth development.


During the time of this pandemic, having resources like parent support groups can bring about a huge impact on a community’s well-being. We hope that the KYC Latinx Parent Support Group strengthens the Elk Grove parent community by being a space of learning, reflection, and resource sharing.


The Latinx Parent Support Group meets again on November 20th, 2 - 4 PM at Oasis Mobile Home Park located at 7500 Elmhurst Rd, Des Plaines 60018. For more information, please contact Mario at marion@kennethyoung.org

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