Who We Are

We hire parents of children with these challenges who are uniquely able to provide one-to-one peer support to parents in similar situations. We also offer monthly workshops and weekly support groups to aid families. Our goal is to empower families to take control of their lives by building on their strengths and supporting them as needed.

We encourage public and private agencies to work with us and with each other to strengthen families with the goal of keeping children safe and healthy in their homes and communities.

What We Do

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.