“Help Those Post-Holiday Blues”

By Dawn Hajjar – Family and Youth Program Coordinator at Serenity Renewal for Families

With the holidays having just passed, it is so easy to get wrapped up in the stress of it all and forget about connecting with our families. This year, between the pandemic ending and inflation, it can wear so heavily on families, especially those already struggling. Support for families is needed more than ever right now. This time of year can be especially hard on individuals in recovery from the misuse of substances, or those who have been affected by a loved one who has struggled with (or who is still struggling with) the misuse of substances.

As the new Family and Youth Program Coordinator at Serenity Renewal for Families, I have been so privileged and blessed to hear so many beautiful stories of how individuals and families have been supported through their journeys of healing and recovery. It has been inspiring to hear from individuals and families that have benefited from the services provided here, and who have expressed such gratitude for the support of Serenity Renewal for Families. During these cold months, I can assure you these stories and experiences certainly warm my heart!

If you have ever had any experience with Serenity Renewal for Families, you know how much we value providing a safe space. When I first started at Serenity Renewal for Families, I was met with a welcoming warmth and true support. Anyone who seeks support here can feel this. I knew immediately that the team of individuals I met truly cared about the wellbeing of the families and individuals reaching out for help. There is a consistent feeling of acceptance without judgement, and true empathy for others. There is a genuine desire to help others and an understanding that everyone’s journey looks unique and different.

We want to help support you in your own journey, whatever that may look like. Coming out of the pandemic, young people, now more than ever, are struggling to find their place in the world. To families who have been affected by addiction, there have been many barriers to connection. Healing our families helps us heal the world, and as we can see, the world is in much need of some healing. We mustn’t forget to give ourselves and our families, compassion, empathy, kindness, and connection.

Serenity Renewal for Families has started our in-person programming once again, to support families affected by addiction, and help them connect in a healthy and open way. We have various programs, all ranging for anyone ages five and older. These programs are based in education, compassion, communication, coping skill development, emotional regulation, and healthy relationships. In our upcoming Strengthening Families for the Future program, we help families develop healthy expression and communication to help bring closeness to families. PhotoVoice, an upcoming teen program, allows for healthy and creative expression while learning emotional identification and regulation.

Serenity Renewal for Families does not turn away anyone who has been affected, directly or indirectly, by addiction. We understand that not every family is able to contribute financially to their healing process, no matter how badly they may need or want to access our services. We offer a sliding scale for our fees so that everyone who needs support has access to it. We also offer 100% subsidies for those in need. If your family has been impacted by addictions, directly or indirectly, we want to help support your healing and strengthen your family bonds in a healthy and open way. With the new year upon us, now is as good a time as any to start putting yourself and your family first. For more information, you can go to our website at www.serenityrenewal.ca  We wish everyone the best of health in the 2023!