For Parents

At Family Support Organization of Essex County we are parents who have been or are on a journey that is similar to one that you are now experiencing - raising a child with emotional, behavioral or mental health challenges or intellectual/developmental disabilities.  Our goal is to educate, equip and empower parents to become effective advocates for their children and to develop the parenting, coping and resilience skills needed to have a  happy, healthy and successful family. 

We’re here to support you on your family journey.

The word “SEA” is an easy way to remember our commitment to families.

  • Support  families in identifying their strengths and building on them to address their needs and goals. Our culturally competent staff assists families at critical times such as when a child is newly diagnosed, accessing services, involved in treatment planning with service providers, appearing in court , meeting with the child-family team, or  with the  child-study team.
  • Educate parents/caregivers of their rights, responsibilities and resources that may be available to assist them to reach their family goals. Monthly educational sessions are also offered on a variety of relevant topics.
  • Advocate on behalf of the family to ensure that their needs, rights and preferences are heard and honored to the maximum extent possible. Family Support Organization of Essex County ’s board and parent leaders also advocate for improvements in the various systems that serve children and families with complex needs.

Family Support Organization of Essex County direct 1:1 peer support is provided through an assigned Family Partner. This service is voluntary and is available to parents whose children are receiving care management services through Partnership for Children of Essex.

A Family Partner is a parent / caregiver who is a formal member of the child and family team for youth receiving care management services through Partnership for Children of Essex. The Family Partner’s role is to support the family, help them engage and actively participate on the team, and make informed decisions that drive the care planning process.

Family Partners have a strong connection to the community and are very knowledgeable about resources, services, and supports for families. The Family Partner’s personal experience raising a child with emotional, behavioral, or mental health needs or intellectual/ developmental disabilities is critical to earning the respect of families and establishing a trusting relationship with parents.

The Family Partner can be a mediator, facilitator, or bridge between families and agencies, while supporting parents to find and use their own voices. Family Partners ensure each family is heard and their individual needs are being addressed.  Family Partners may also communicate and educate agency staff on the values and principles of family involvement in systems of care, the importance of family voice and choice, and other key aspects of the family movement.

Our Warmline is available Monday- Friday from 9 am to 5 pm for information and referral to community resources or to connect you to one of our consultation team members who can assist you with your parental concerns.
Help is just a call away. 973-395-144. Call to schedule an appointment with our consultation team regarding a parental concern.