Childhood experiences, both positive and negative, have a tremendous impact on future lifelong health and opportunities. #kidscantwait is dedicated to bringing awareness to the value of positive childhood experiences and their importance for well-being & development. #kidscantwait is an initiative of Hope For Youth which builds on knowledge gained from the Adverse Childhood Experiences(ACEs) study.  We know from this long term longitudinal research that preventing ACEs and engaging in early identification of people who have experienced them could have a significant impact on a range of critical health problems (SAMHSA, 2017).

Young kids entering care is on the rise. With the heroin epidemic on Long Island, more young mothers are giving birth while suffering from drug addiction. It is essential that we reach mothers with intense child-parent psychotherapy to promote the continued achievement of developmental milestones for children.

Substance abuse is intergenerational and children of addicts are at risk for childhood trauma and future addiction. Kids who experience trauma can grow up suffering from psychiatric disorders that exacerbate if left untreated. These individuals then have children of their own who are more likely to experience trauma due to the lack of services a parent received in treating their trauma as a child. #kidscantwait is devoted to providing the critical services necessary to improve the likelihood that these young children in foster care grow into healthier adults.  In addition, providing these necessary supports early on can decrease time in foster care through timely reunification, adoption, or relative placement. It can also reduce re-entry into foster care by providing post-permanency supports.

For almost 50 years, Hope For Youth has provided services for children, youth and families, spanning a continuum of care from out-patient, clinical and preventive services, to foster care, diagnostic and emergency residential services. We work with children as young as birth across the Long Island region. For more information about Hope For Youth visit www.hfyny.org .