Program Spotlight: Early Childhood Counseling Program

 Mental Health Therapists Charissa Schmidt, QMHP and Carlyn Wierda, LMFT pose with therapeutic play tools.

Mental Health Therapists Charissa Schmidt, QMHP and Carlyn Wierda, LMFT pose with therapeutic play tools.

Looking Glass is known throughout Lane County as a leading provider of services for low-income, at-risk youth, but did you know that many of our programs also serve children and adults? The Early Childhood Counseling Program is a great example of how Looking Glass provides help, hope, and healing to people of all ages.

The Looking Glass Early Childhood Counseling Program serves infants, toddlers, and children under the age of 5 while also providing services to their caregivers. Program staff focus on supporting healthy development and helping children and caregivers build healthy attachments. The program offers several support groups and includes family therapy.

“I think it is helpful for the public to know that counseling services can start at the age of 0, and that this does not mean that we are just meeting with the child, but that we are meeting with the child with their caregivers as well, to support that healthy connection between them,” explains Carlyn Wierda, LMFT, Clinical Supervisor of the program. “Often that work includes psycho-education, attachment interventions, sensory and play activities.”

Many of the children served by the Early Childhood Counseling Program are in foster care placements. Program staff work to support these children through the adoption process or reunification with a birth parent. Wierda comments, “It can be helpful to know that sometimes children who have experienced trauma might currently struggle due to those past experiences, even if they are currently in a loving and caring environment where their needs are being met.”

Looking Glass is proud to offer counseling services to children, youth, adults, and families of all ages. The Early Childhood Counseling Program can be reached through our main counseling line, (541) 484-4428.