CASA is one of our flagship charities! Our funds help to support their Transition Worker who works at CASA House to support youth in their transition back home to ensure them and their families are set up for success. CASA House is a 19 bed residential facility that provides support for teens facing mental health and/or addiction challenges. The stories below are from the transition worker about how they tailor their support for adolescents to meet their unique needs, truly showcasing the impact of their work.
"Once graduating from CASA house this adolescent was weeks away from her 18th birthday. During their stay at CASA House I had met quite often during their last month to work on improving their resume, planning for post secondary and developing plans for their life post-CASA House.
This adolescent had quite the history of being taken care of by their parents and had a sheltered perception of the world and their abilities. After leaving CASA House we checked-in in-person approximately every two weeks starting from meeting for a coffee at their local McDonalds near their home.
An outing normally seen as pretty normal and average for a person of their age. Upon the first meeting they were dropped off by their mother who was going to wait in the parking lot and make sure they made it through the meeting okay. During the next few check-in’s the adolescent built her skills and confidence where they would no longer get dropped off after some encouragement and challenge themselves to walk from home. The visits slowly got more independent and harder. Over the next few months this lead to going for a bike ride which they hadn’t done without their parents, to taking a bus ride with the support of the Transition coordinator for the first time and going into the downtown of Edmonton. Some of these examples may seem small and normal for a lot of adolescents but for the adolescents we support they create a sense of independence and pride in themselves over this short transition."
"Another family transitioning from CASA House where their main concerns were regarding the relationships in the home environment lead to the majority of the check in’s being done as a family unit instead of 1:1. This family would meet every two weeks at the Tim Hortons in their town with the transition coordinator to discuss how things had been going, what obstacles are getting in their way and worked on the transition back into school. As things evolved this lead to more 1:1 check in’s and skill building which included finding more independent activities for the adolescent where the transition coordinator and adolescent had trialed some bike routes in their community along with a workout routine using their local recreational centre."
"Transition is focused on the adolescents interests and taking things out of the “norm” for mental health supports. This adolescent’s interests were focused around the outdoors and wilderness, spending a lot of their free time biking, no matter the weather etc. Meeting the adolescent in their comfort zone during check in’s allowed the adolescent to open up and feel safe to share concerns that were going on in the home with their family as well as concerns about friendships etc. Throughout their transition their check-in’s all took place during bike rides in their community with planning for the end of their transition involvement often we try to come up with something challenging or exciting for their last check in. Keeping in line with their interests this lead to going to a local wilderness area on a bike ride."