Children's Advantage Family Center Opens


(pictured: Kathy Regal, NiCole Thomas, Mary McCracken, Ryan Ferguson)

Supporting hope and healing for the whole family with comprehensive care is the goal for the Family Center officially opened by Children’s Advantage this summer.

Children’s Advantage has provided behavior health services for children and families for over 45 with their primary headquarters on North Chestnut Street in Ravenna. Now, with their new 7,000 square foot facility located on 5968 New Milford Rd in Ravenna, they can expand their services.

“We saw the need to expand our services to treat the whole family rather than just focusing on the children,” CEO Kathy Regal explained. “With the drug epidemic in the community, we have seen so many children being removed from their natural families -- children who were losing their parents through the drug epidemic. We started talking about a model of care to treat the whole family, and we developed the Family Center to do just that, to really look at the intergenerational trauma, the intergenerational poverty issues that affect the whole family.”

Along with counseling offices, the center has group therapy rooms with comfortable seating and a full kitchen for families to build meal planning, budgeting, and meal preparation skills. The center also includes a sensory room where children can be observed during play therapy through a one-way mirror.

“We are learning more and more about with the impact of traumatic events and the importance of providing evidence-based trauma treatment to help children and families cope and move toward recovery,” commented John Garrity, PhD, executive director of the Mental Health & Recovery Board. “This new space will allow Children’s Advantage to provide counseling, parenting, and kinship programs as well as some youth after-school programming.”

The Family Center cost around $600,000 to acquire and renovate and was paid for with help from a $367,000 grant from the Ohio Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services and $122,500 from the Mental Health and Recovery Board of Portage County. The Portage Community Bank also helped finance a loan for the remainder of the costs.

For more information and to schedule an appointment, please visit www.childrensadvantage.org or call 330.296.5552

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