Elk Grove Township’ s Youth and Family Services (EGTYFS) Department works every day to lift Township parents and children up, to lead healthier and happier lives.

Counseling ervices are offered on a sliding fee scale to offer affordable support for improving the family structure, boundaries, communication and positive self-esteem, according to Clinical Director, Dean Reschke, M.S. LMFT.

“Many children today experience broken or conflictual families, bullying and isolation at school and are left ‘ living in their heads’ and suffering alone in silence,” Reschke said.

Individual, couple and family counseling services are available, as well as Life Skills Groups which are offered to nearly 2,500 children annually.

The goal of these groups is to build self-esteem through positive skills development. Bullying Prevention Programs help children understand bullying roles, and to form strategies if they are being bullied.

“Nearly all children who participate in this program report being teased, put down, or aggressed against due to at least one of the following: their name, religion, gender, race, economic class or disability,” Reschke said.

Social Skills Training Groups, including Girls Empowerment Groups, help tweens and teens understand they are not alone, that they do not need to give in to peer pressure and that they can take charge of their lives. Quotes from participants include, “I’ ve learned that I’ m okay just the way I am,”and “This group has made me stronger, as a girl.

”Reschke says at the end of the day, all of the programs offered through Elk Grove Township are meant to help people leader happier and more productive lives. “We are truly committed to this purpose,” he said.