Power In Friendship

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There is nothing more heartwarming than watching your child make a friend. The smiles, the giggles, the hugs, and the play puts a smile on any face.

More than having a companion, making friends can help children have an increased sense of belonging, boost happiness, reduce stress, and improve self-confidence. There is power in friendship.

One of the first fears that some parents of children with disabilities have is that their child will never make a friend. The insurmountable world of “different” seems overwhelming. No child needs to be without friends.

The National Inclusion Project has worked with parents to create a toolbox of resources to help parents and children build inclusive friendships, so no one sits on the sidelines. With this toolbox, parents of children who are typically developing and parents of children with disabilities both have the tools to welcome inclusive friendships for their children.

Making friends can be hard for kids, but it can also be hard for parents. Parents of children who are typically developing are often afraid of saying the wrong thing, and offending parents of children with disabilities. Parents of children with disabilities can run into difficulties when their child is asked to participate in a non-inclusive environment.

At the National Inclusion Project, we do not see this as a lack of trying, but a lack of understanding. This toolbox seeks to help all parents get the tools they need to help friendships bloom. While there is no way to “force” a friendship, this toolbox improves the possibility that a friendship can be forged between children.

Sometimes, children with disabilities have a hard time making friends quickly. When they are not included in play activities, everyone misses out– both children with disabilities and children who are typically developing. Inclusion is the most effective way to help any child feel like they belong.

Toolbox:

 

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