New group for tween girls launching in January

By Leah Persky, Phd & CFLE • Professional and Community Education Manager

Are you the parent or caregiver of a tween girl aged 10-13 years old? Do you think your child would benefit from a small supportive group to foster growth, confidence, finding their voice, and making connections? If so, please consider a new group we are launching at JFCS to support tween girls through a model of peer support, education, and empowerment. This six-week class begins on Thursday, Jan. 18, at 6 p.m. and will be led by a team of JFCS therapists and a parent coach. The group is open to all those who identify as a girl, ages 10-13.

It is a challenging and overwhelming time for many tween and teenage girls. Girls today are facing unique challenges to their development; national data demonstrate these challenges and disturbing patterns about the mental well-being of teen girls. Kathleen Ethier, director of the CDC’s adolescent and school health division, stated that in 30 years of collecting similar data, “we’ve never seen this kind of devastating, consistent findings.” Increased rates of depression, anxiety and thoughts of suicide have grown significantly in young girls over the past several years. Boys of the same age do not appear to be experiencing the same level of crisis.

At JFCS, we strive to support the well-being of girls and all children – it is central to the core value of JFCS – tikkun olam – repairing the world one person at a time. We also know there are many things we can do to support the teens in our lives. That is why we are creating this new group, which will provide a supportive space for kids to learn healthy coping skills, connect with others, learn more about themselves and find their voice.

Why should a parent consider enrolling their child in this group? Who is this group a good fit for?

If you feel your child is struggling with their self-esteem, has a hard time making new connections, lacks focus or interests, is overly focused on social media, people pleasing, or experiences challenges around their emotional/social development, this is the group for your child.

What will they do each week?

Activities include journaling, self-reflection activities, goal setting, role playing, and playing social and emotional development games. Girls will learn a variety of new coping skills that they can bring with them into their everyday activities and routines.

What will the parents/caregivers do?

Parents will have the opportunity to meet with the facilitators before and after the class to receive an overview of the work, contribute ideas to the class plan, and receive feedback when the class is complete. Parents can drop off their child for the class.

What else do I need to know?

We will meet in person at JFCS in Golden Valley. The cost is $150 for the six-week session, with a sliding-fee scale available. If you have questions about this program, please contact Leah Persky, Manager of Professional and Community Education, at or 952-542-4825.

Class size is limited, register today!

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