"I cannot recommend this group more highly!"
Teenz has been a fantastic experience for my son and has been instrumental in the progress he's made over the past year. Adrienne and Martine are ingenious and sensitive in devising and supervising outings that the kids find enjoyable and that also allow for learning and the development of essential life skills. I have seen enormous growth in my son as a result of his participation in Teenz- he is more confident, independent, relaxed, and connected to his peers. He has built solid friendships with several participants in the group and enjoys the company of them all. I cannot recommend this group more highly!
Adrienne has been nothing short of a God send in our lives. We met Adrienne when our son Brendan was 14 years old. He was incredibly disorganized and isolated at that age. He was perseverating on his computer games to such a degree that he would erase his homework assignments because homework interfered with his play time.We hired Adrienne to act as a homework helper. Adrienne pointed out that we had to work on our son’s social skills as well as his academic skills. Over the next four years Adrienne worked diligently with Brendan taking him out into the community to attend events and activities that my husband and I could never have coaxed him to do. She actively encouraged his budding friendships and would often include Brendan’s friends in their outings.
During this period Adrienne also worked with Brendan on his academic, organizational and time management skills. She helped him to become academically independent. She told us that we should make Brendan start taking the subway to school. Brendan was not happy with this and my husband and I were scared. Adrienne convinced us that this would be a critical skill and that it was important that he develop it as soon as possible. She taught Brendan how to read a subway map, use Hopstop and what to do in the event of an emergency. Brendan quickly caught on and no longer asked to take the school bus.
When Brendan was a junior in high school we began talking about what direction his life would take after graduation. We questioned if he could live on his own and deal with the pressures of college life. Adrienne convinced us to send Brendan to an eight week “college experience” program that summer. She identified an appropriate program and off he went. Needless to say he had a great time and blossomed from the experience.
Brendan is now a college sophomore who lives on campus. Although Adrienne is no longer a weekly presence in our lives we still reach out to her for her advice. She has been instrumental in helping us identify summer internships and experiences for Brendan and we continue to consult with her about how to support Brendan as he enters adulthood. If you have a child with special needs I recommend that you consult with Adrienne about what strategies can be employed to help your child realize his or her full capabilities.
"Where do I begin?"
Where do I begin? When my son Marty started working with Martine just a few short years ago he was so anxious that he would not even come upstairs from the school bus by himself and the thought of him running down the block to pick up a quart of milk was unimaginable. Fast forward three years and Marty working with Martine and Marty is a new kid (or should I say teenager). Marty, who is now 16, can take a taxi by himself, walks to therapy by himself (two avenues and two blocks) and a few weeks ago picked up the dry cleaning for me while I was at the gym. Since working with Martine Marty’s independence skills as well as his self confidence have soared and suffice it to say I am thrilled!
This summer Martine (who is the social worker at Marty’s school) teamed up with Adrienne (the guidance counselor at Marty’s school) and started Teenz in the City. What is Teenz in the City?? Well I would describe it a social skills group (and not those boring social skills groups our kids went to when they were little) with a group that teaches and reinforces real life skills (taking a taxi, ordering and paying in a restaurant, using the iphone to figure out how to get someplace …) that our kids need to learn how to do. Every week a group of well matched kids do something fun (lunch, mini golf, Dylan’s candy bar) for about two hours. Appropriate social interaction is encouraged and supported by Martine and Adrienne and all those life skills our kids are going to need to learn are interwoven into that day’s activity. It is the perfect combination of fun and learning in a safe and comfortable environment. I would encourage any parent who wants their teen to increase his/her independence and well as socialization skills to give Martine and Adrienne a try. You won’t be disappointed!
We have been overwhelmed by the positive feedback we have received both from both our members and their parents about the impact that our program has had. Teenz In The City was launched to help fill a gap in the community for social support and life skill development for teenagers and young adults in the New York tri-state area. We are proud to be providing services that have positively impacted the lives of so many families. Below you will find a few stories from the parents of members who we have worked with in the past, some of which we are still working with today.