In January 2022, I had the opportunity to conduct a teacher training for my alma mater. Returning to the school of my childhood was truly a homecoming experience. As a reflective clinician and educator, it was a nostalgic experience of both personal and professional value.
I was reminded of my earlier school life and childhood, which played an important role in shaping my desire to work with young people. Professionally, I relished being able to give back to a familiar neighbourhood in my community and to share my knowledge with teachers. Not to mention, it was always a joy to be in the midst of teachers who are passionate and committed towards children with fewer resources and disadvantaged beginnings.
Furthermore, this session was an important reminder that caregiving and parenting a child was not any single person’s work alone. It is best done as a school-home-community partnership (i.e., the idea of allo-parenting). Indeed, it takes a village to raise a child. This approach continues to inform the way I support children, teens, and their families who struggle with issues of mental well-being.
Feedback from teachers and staff