The Rochester City School District (RCSD) announced in June 2023 receipt of funds from the New York State Office of Mental Health that will facilitate expanding the number of RCSD student health centers from 7 to 16. These new health centers are expected to provide greater medical, social-emotional, and mental health services for students.
ROC the Future (RTF) Alliance, an organization describing itself as “a community cradle to career collaboration for improving academic achievement for children in the city of Rochester, NY,” may build on RCSD’s expanded offering of services to children by implementing programs that build bridges linking parents and other adults providing care for children to resources for improved academic experience outcomes.
One such RTF program is the Parent Café, with the first event scheduled to be held on Tue., July 25 from 5:00 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. at Maplewood Family YMCA Lily Café, 25 Driving Park Avenue, Rochester, NY. All participants in the Parent Café will receive a $40 gift card, RTF says.
According to information supplied by RTF, “the Parent Café is a nationally recognized model of small group discussions based on the five protective factors that reduce trauma and fortify families, ultimately strengthening our community.”
Parent Café is part of RTF’s Whole Child Initiative.
One parent, who is now involved with the Parent Café, shares her experience which led to her taking an active role in this program:
“I was frustrated because the trained professionals and systems refused to see me as a partner and asset in achieving [my son’s] educational goals. When organizations learn to partner well with the adults in the lives of the children, they will become more effective,” said Nahmese Bacot, Parent/Family Partner.
RTF and its Whole Child Initiative “publicly affirm their commitment to advance systems-level approaches that disrupt structural racism and build racial equity to ensure that children receive what they need to be safe, healthy, and successful,” the organizations’ literature says.