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Helping our children cope with crisis

Children find love during crisis

School closures and social distancing are presenting both challenges and opportunities to parents and children across the nation. Here are some resources to help navigate new situations.

March 16, 2020 — The Rev. Kathy Pittenger is the Children’s Initiatives Coordinator for The Michigan Conference. She writes, “Michigan is in a much different place than last week. With schools closed, churches closed, and most gathering places closed, families have a lot of time with one another.”

Kathy has developed a Toolbox that includes resources about talking with kids about COVID-19. While some of the tools are for local churches to develop with families, these tools may be helpful for parents.  

She writes, “The news about the spread of COVID-19, commonly known as a coronavirus, and the response to it, has left communities and families wondering what to do next and how to prepare. First, take a deep breath. As faith leaders, we have an opportunity to be a calm, non-anxious presence in the midst of so much unknown. We can speak proactively about the COVID-19, while maintaining a calm spirit and creating or providing ways for people who want to ‘do’ something in meaningful and healthy ways.”

Kathy suggests these steps:

  • Assess what your child knows
  • Process your own anxiety first
  • Don’t dismiss your child’s fears
  • Talk at an age-appropriate level
  • Emphasize good hygiene
  • Frame school and church closures as a positive
  • Read more in-depth about each bullet point in this article from NY Times Parenting.

The Toolbox provides additional articles that focus on talking with kids about COVID-19.

CLICK HERE for the full toolbox. New resources will be added.