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Teen Support Groups

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Looking for support groups for 14 year old girl

Aug 2012

I am wondering if there are any current support groups available for teens in the Berkeley, Albany, El Certito area? I have a 14 yr old neice who really needs support and would benefit from being able to connect with teens in her area. Her parents are both mentally ill, incredibly abusive and challenging to deal with and do not believe in therapy, so we are looking for a group that is preferably free that she can get to by public transportation. Are there any currently active alateen groups meeting locally? She tried going to the one I found online, but no one was there (she was told she was the first teen to EVER come) and she is scared and discouraged but desperately needs help! Any ideas are very welcome! Worried auntie


Hi. I didn't catch your initial post, but wanted to tell you about this program called Stepping Stones Project. Check out their website at www.steppingstonesproject.org. I think they originate out of Marin but they have gender specific ''coming of age'' groups for teens in the East Bay (and maybe other areas too) They help kids deal with transitioning to young adulthood while dealing with issues like self esteem. Good Luck

Young Men Coming of Age groups in Live Oak Park?

March 2012

Has anyone had any experience with the mentoring groups for young men that meet at Live Oak Park, run by Keith Weinstein and Eilyahu Sills? I'll be moving back to the East Bay soon (after 10 years in the foothills), and am wanting to put a lot of support in place for my almost-16-year-old son, who is smoking way too much marijuana, gravitates to the wrong kind of friends, and is teetering on the edge of a real downward spiral. Or if not these groups, any recommendations for alternative mentoring groups or ideas about how to find a good mentor? My son's passion is electronic dance music (dubstep, etc), so someone involved in that world would be the perfect match. Thanks! Terry


My son has been going to the Young Men Group for over a year now. At first hesitant, but now seems to enjoy it. The topics discussed may well be highly relevant to this age group within a very different environment that may reach some. My son has since independently engaged in other introspective activities such as teen meditation which helped shift his view of things. Whether the 2 are linked is unclear but the theme is being more aware for yourself rather than tuning out on eg pot. He says that there are less pot heads going to the Young Men group now than at first.

Girls groups for preteens?

Oct 2010

I am looking for a girls group for girls around ages 10-13. My daughter would like a place where she can talk with other girls about entering putberty, feelings about her family, wanting more independence, and so on. She doesn't have any serious clinical issues, is looking for more a support group kind of thing. Any one know of anything like that around Berkeley?


The Stepping Stones Project is just what you are seeking. Stepping Stones is a 'Coming of Age' program for girls or boys through middle school when they are crossing the threshold from childhood to adolescence.

The Coming of Age program begins in Fall or Winter of 6th or 7th grade, with 6 to 10 same-gender and same-grade youth forming a group. Under the guidance of two Stepping Stones leaders, the group meets twice a month until the fall of 9th grade.

My daughter is just finishing the program. I can't recommend it highly enough. Check out their website for more details. http://steppingstonesproject.org/pages/coming_of_age_overview (415) 383-6888 Stepping Stones Fan


Rite of Passage group for teens?

Aug 2009

Some time ago I saw a web page for an east bay young teen group, a rite of passage experience. Now I cannot find them. Any clues?


My son Dan and other young men went through a coming-of-age boys to men group for 6 years - they chose to extend the program through high school. I can say unequivocally that Stepping Stones Project was one of the best things that ever happened to them. Dan has lifelong friends and skills, connections and memories from this extremely thoughtful, smart consortium of leaders. I recommend this highly for your kids and for kids and families you know, and hope you'll pass on info to them if you are in the San Francisco Bay Area.

SSP offers an extended Coming-of-Age Mentorship Program for middle school youth (6th, 7th, & 8th grade). They focus on providing youth with a connection to the natural world and the experience of a Village like community. They have overnight camping activities and bi-monthly meetings with trained, lively leaders. Group size is 8 students. The program lasts through middle school and includes support for parents as well as youth. The program culminates in a Rites of Passage ceremony. Stepping Stones goals are to build character, have fun and create a healthy community environment for youth and parents.

Parent and Youth Information evening to meet young graduates of the program, parents and mentors:

Monday September 14th 6:30 to 9 pm (tea & cookies @ 6)
San Rafael Community Center, 618 B Street,San Rafael, CA 94901

Wednesday September 16th 6:30 to 9 pm (tea & cookies @ 6)
Live Oak Community Center (Fireside Room)
1301 Shattuck Ave, Berkeley, CA 94709

Friday September 18th 6:30 to 9 pm (tea & cookies @ 6)
San Francisco County Fair Building (Gallery Room)
9th Ave and Lincoln (just inside the park)
San Francisco, CA 94122
RSVP or for more information mike@steppingstonesproject.org or site at steppingstonesproject.org (415) 454-3548 Mary
Hi, In regards to the Rite of Passage group, maybe you were thinking of this: http://www.steppingstonesproject.org/ Diana
Both of my teenagers have participated in the Stepping Stones Coming of Age Project. It has been a fantastic experience, especially for my daughter. The two leaders guide the girls in the group toward the kinds of interactions and values that our family supports -- kindness, honesty, compassion, appreciation for nature, self-awareness. I highly recommend the group -- there are some scholarships available. Check it out at http://www.steppingstonesproject.org Betsy
Hi, I am connected with two rites of passage groups, both of which may have posted at times on BPN:

Wilderness Reflections offers wilderness rites of passage trips each summer for teens 15-19 years old. We also create ongoing transitions programs in schools for 8th and 12th graders (schools or parents contact us to co-design a program that fits their student body and school). These school programs are 2-10 months duration. For more info visit our website at www.WildernessReflections.com or email info@wildernessreflections.com

The Stepping Stones Project runs coming of age groups that span the middle school years (2-3 years long). Their focus is on meeting developmental needs not provided for in mainstream society/school/community. We seek to help 12-14 year olds cultivate their relationships with self, community and nature. Groups meet approx. once every 2-3 weeks with day-long and overnight wilderness trips. See more at www.steppingstonesproject.org or write to info@steppingstonesproject.org.

Hope this helps, Dave


Biracial teen groups in eastbay?

Oct 2008

Does anyone know of any teen groups that are specifically for biracial teens and the identity concerns they have? (Not only black/white but also latino/white, asian/white). I would prefer not to go through Kaiser. Thanks. anon


I'm not sure if this is what you are looking for, but: My friend's son was involved in the group Youth Together for his 4 years of high school. He found it to be a very positive and rewarding experience and was really able to vocalize his experience of being a youth of mixed races (latino/white/asian). If your teen is at Berkeley High, there is a group there that meets regularly. Here is the web link. http://www.youthtogether.net/about/history.php3 anon

General Issues for Teen Girls

In response to the mother looking for a "general issues" teen girls' support group. In the BHS Daily Bulletin a couple of weeks ago, I noticed a club that has recently started up:

"Young women (only) are invited to join a Body Positive Group meets Fridays, 4th period in Portable 4. Please join us!"

This club is formed by teen girls from BHS who are concerned about the low self-esteem many teen girls have about their bodies and touches on all their concerns about themselves and how they are perceived and how they perceive themselves. If your daughter goes to BHS, she might want to check this out. --jahlee


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