Our Teen Talk program consists of special group discussions for pre-teens and teens. All of the discussions are age-appropriate. A variety of views may be shared in the informal, “open chat” forum. Consequently, youth will have an opportunity to air their concerns and ask questions of adult facilitators in a safe, accepting and nonjudgmental environment.
Teen Talk facilitators are open to discussing anything the youth participants bring up. In addition, topics can range from light to serious. Topics that may be discussed include sports, school, social media, friendship, depression, sexuality, dating, abuse, violence, homelessness, social injustice, mental health and wellness, self-harm and suicide.
Benefits of participating in Teen Talks
Joining a group of kids that your teen doesn’t know may sound intimidating to them at first, but group discussions provide many benefits to participants. Teens who participate in group discussions are usually surprised by how rewarding the experience can be.
Youth can benefit from participation in Teen Talk group discussions in several ways.
Participation encourages dialogue among and between teens. Youth may be asked to comment on what another participant has said. A question may be posed, and teens encouraged to discuss possible answers with each other before the public discussion.
It provides a support network and a sounding board. Other teens in the group may help one another to come up with specific ideas for dealing with a difficult situation or challenge, as well as hold each other accountable along the way. Human beings are social, and there’s a social need for people to join groups. “[W]e prefer [companionship with] those who provide us with reassurance and support as well as accurate information” (The Psychology of Groups, by Donelson R. Forsyth).
It increases understanding and empathy. Sharing ideas in a group setting can promote understanding of other viewpoints. Furthermore, it can provide new ideas and ways to deal with issues. “By seeing how other people tackle problems and make positive changes, you can discover a whole range of strategies for facing your own concerns.” (source: APA).
It can improve social and emotional well-being. Participating in group talks can reduce or eliminate feelings of isolation (“I’m not alone”), and promote overall improved social, mental and emotional well-being. It can be a big relief to hear other teens talk about what they’re going through, and realize they’re not alone. “People who are accepted members of a group tend to feel happier and more satisfied” (The Psychology of Groups, by Donelson R. Forsyth).
Register your teen for an event
For more information and to register for one of our Teen Talk events, click on one of the following links for more information about that Talk series.