Parents of teens unite for 10-week summer support group

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The Parent Project is a 10-week course that aims to help parents build better relationships and bonds with their teenagers.

“We can’t control the youth and reminding parents of that is very difficult,” Fortuna Teen Court coordinator Raven Majors said.

The program teaches parents how to talk to their kids without arguing. And how to address alcohol and drug use.

“There [are] A lot of new substances out there that the parents aren’t aware of, so it’s a lot of education informing them of what they are, what the different names of them so they can identify them, and connecting them with local resources,” Majors said.

Other important topics include school attendance and performance.

“Our goal during the session is to have some of the admin come in and discuss with the parents specifically what they can do,” Majors said.

Jovan Pree took a parenting class after giving birth to twins. She’s back now as a mom of twin teens.

“This was the first parenting class I had seen for teenagers and I said ‘Sure, let’s go ahead.’ it was one of those things where you’re a little scared because you don’t wanna be the only one there,” Pree said.

Pree appreciated the support of fellow parents.

“To go in and see multiple parents there, it gives you a release cause you’re like ‘I’m not the only one,’” Pree said.

Week after week, the parents meet from 6 to 8 p.m. to discuss new chapters in the program book and their challenges.

“Every meeting was a surprise. There were different chapters and you go through the chapter, you see it and you go like ‘Yes! I’ve seen it or I’ve heard about it,” Pree said. ‘It’s a group of people that need to have this conversation and should be able to have this conversation without having any kind of bad feeling or hesitation.”