FSGC, Junior Achievement partner on mental health career day

happy bear topeka west kids resized and croppedIt’s not every day you learn relaxation techniques from a five-year-old.

That was one of several activities 20 Topeka West High School students participated in a “Making a Career, Making a Difference,” an interactive day hosted by Family Service & Guidance Center and Junior Achievement of Kansas.

Students interacted with and heard from experienced FSGC professionals about crucial skills needed to get and keep a good job. They also got an introduction to careers in mental health. “Making a Career, Making a Difference” was made possible by a generous grant from the Topeka Credit Union Foundation.

They spent time learning about deep breathing from children in FSGC’s Therapeutic Preschool, a preschool designed for children ages 2-6 living with behavioral and emotional issues. Dr. Connie Romig demonstrated sand tray therapy and Dr. Abby Callis showed students how virtual reality is used to treat anxiety.relaxation exercises

Pam Evans, Director of Marketing & Development, said the first-time event was a big success. It was part of FSGC’s efforts to develop new recruitment strategies.

“Mental health care might not be top-of-mind for most young adults starting to plan their futures,” she said. “‘Making a Career, Making a Difference’ is an innovative way to create awareness among young men and women who are interested in helping people.”

Junior Achievement Executive Director Amy Burns said the day delievered important messages about how to look for, secure and retain a job.

“It was great to partner with FSGC to teach high school students important job skills, like writing a resume and how to conduct themselves during an interview. These skills are critical, no matter what field of work they choose," Amy said.

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Did you know?

FSGC’s Early Childhood Intervention Program therapeutic preschool has been touted by the State of Kansas as a model for other therapeutic preschools to emulate.