What is the Pals Program?
Pals is a group mentoring program of HOPE for Kids and serves children in grades K-2. Pals focuses on the emotional and behavioral development of the children through a mentoring curriculum which uses large group circles and small group recreational activities. Pals works not only with the child, but with the whole family, ensuring they have access to the services and resources necessary for success.
What are sessions like?
Pals has two groups of fifteen children that meet Wednesday afternoons and Saturday mornings at HOPE.
Each session begins with snack time in which children are encouraged to use manners and have positive interactions with peers, program staff and volunteer mentors. Staff and mentors use snack time to model appropriate social behaviors to participants. Circle time assists children in developing their listening skills, ability to follow directions, and learn about emotions and healthy ways to express themselves. Small group activities of arts & crafts and games give the children time to make friends and develop their social and motor skills. Pals plans special events for the children to provide cultural experiences in the arts, sciences, and theater. Families are included whenever possible in the special events to offer a fun day for everyone.
Pals goals focus on the social and behavioral needs of the child as indicated through parents, school faculty and HOPE staff interviews. Group goals in peer interactions, listening skills and trying new learning experiencs are establish by staff, as well as individual goals based on the child's challenges. Goal progress is noted throughout the sessions and outcomes are reported at the end of the sessions. Each child is expected to make some progress on these goals throughout the year.