Data has been released this month from research done by the Minnesota Department of Health showing that more than half of Minnesotans have had an adverse experience in their childhood that could have a lifelong impact on their health and well-being.
Situations such as divorce or separation of parents, an incarcerated household member, a mentally ill parent, domestic violence, a household member with an alcohol or substance abuse problem, or verbal, physical or sexual abuse are some of the adverse experiences mentioned in the study.
The extensive body of research documents adults with even one of these experiences is subject to poor physical and mental health, chronic disease, lower education achievement and lower economic success.
However, researchers are quick to point out that although adversity increases risk, it is also clear that adversity is not destiny. The intent is to use this information to better identify and support children and families at risk.
One example given to combat these negative conditions is to involve a loving adult in the child’s life. Becoming a Kinship mentor is one way to improve the conditions for children in our own community.
Meet Karlie, a seventh-grader from Pequot Lakes, who is living with her younger siblings and dad. The family has been battling many issues recently, but Karlie continues to do quite well in her studies. She would enjoy one-on-one time with a caring woman and an opportunity to bake, go swimming and dabble with hair and makeup.
Kinship Partners serves families in Crow Wing and southern Cass counties and the Staples/Motley area by providing positive role models to youth ages 5-14. We have offices in Brainerd, Pequot Lakes, Crosby and Staples.
For more information about Karlie or any of the kids on our waiting list, call 218-454-8016 or 877-730-5437. Visit our website at www.kinshippartners.org.