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Gangs/Violence

How To Help Children and Youth That Attend School With Gangs And Violence

Attending schools and living in communities with gang activity puts children & youth at great risk of being badly hurt in many ways. It also increases the risk that children & youth will become violent or join gangs in self-defense. Attending schools with gangs and violence can lead to death, permanent disability, imprisonment, addictions of all kinds, and being abused in many ways. Gangs and violence can be signs of families, schools and communities not meeting the children’s or youth’s needs for: meaningful skills; realistic, effective self-esteem; communication skills; effective alternatives; security/safety; success; social connection; and hope. Children & youth also join gangs for reasons of friendship in the face of loneliness and feeling useless/worthless. The existence of gangs and violence can also reflect alienation from the community, a lack of communication skills and poor nutrition. Too often the unresolved, unsupported pain and suffering of youth abnormalize the normal and normalize the abnormal. Children and youth become so desperate and alienated from society that gang life looks attractive. Society, so far, is not forgiving and compassionate when anyone makes a mistake or breaks the law. This lack of compassion condemns children & youth, who can come to think of themselves as “bad” forever. Gangs help kids feel normal and welcomed. Nutritional imbalances and exposure to environmental pollutants can also be involved in making children & youth anxious, angry and violent.

Without help, gang violence can be life threatening and can lead to dangerous and crippling lifetime habits. Changing to a safer school is not always possible, but still a good idea to explore. Being in such dangerous schools makes learning very difficult, due to the stress of fearing for personal safety. Violence and willingness to participate in gang life is often caused by survival needs (safer to be violent or in a gang because there are no alternative safe options). The violent behavior is often due to and complicated by a combination of: mental illness; unacknowledged fear; anger; low self-esteem; boredom; hopelessness; family modeling; loneliness. Drugs and alcohol can be involved in both violence and gang membership, as can alienation from society, insufficient communication and negotiation skills, a history of a lack of school funding and inappropriate school staffing. Nutritional imbalances and exposure to pollutants may also be factors.

First, We Would Investigate

Second, We Would Investigate

For Long Term Support
We Would Investigate

  • Safe School Ambassadors
  • Independent Study
  • Nonviolent Communication
  • Aikido
  • Attitudinal Healing
  • Meditation
  • Expressive Arts
  • Psychotherapy
  • Psychiatry
  • EMDR
  • Hypnotherapy
  • Biofeedback
  • Wilderness Therapy
  • Support For Parents
  • Precision Teaching
  • Light Therapy
  • Developmental Optometry
  • Drumming
  • Environmentally Healthy Homes
  • Flower Essences
  • Herbology
  • Aikido
  • Safe School Ambassadors
  • Independent Study
  • Nutrition Consulting
  • Meditation
  • Aromatherapy
  • Herbology
  • Homeopathy
  • Nonviolent Communication
  • Psychotherapy
  • Meditation

On Our Own We Would Try: • Pets • Less or No TV, Movies, Video/Computer Games • Wholesome Pleasures • Replace sodas, juices, sugars, fats, fast foods with water, veggies, whole grains, nuts, protein, fruit, slow food • Bedtime Stories and Chats • Back Rubs and Foot Massages • Long Walks/Hikes • Nature

For Parents: • Talk with other parents. Form or find a parent support group so you have support. Help your child or youth feel reassured by joining with other parents and school staff interested in changing this situation. • Learn nonviolent communication and negotiation skills and teach them to your child or youth. • Move into a safer neighborhood if possible. • Take your child or youth out of the environment whenever possible for as long as possible. • Go camping together as often as possible. • Encourage education and getting employable skills. • Enroll in educational programs yourself. • Enroll in Aikido yourself. • Tell the truth about what you think and feel. • Get in touch with having faith that the child or youth will be OK. Communicate this often.

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