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Brighter Futures: C4’s Summer Jam

Youth, families, and C4 staff came together last Wednesday for games, food, and arts and crafts. 


Despite being organized with limited time and unexpectedly held indoors due to inclement weather, the first annual Summer Jam was a success. Though not clinical in nature, the therapeutic benefits hold significant importance for individuals’ overall well-being and offer opportunities to build social connectedness, reduce stigma, and much needed moments of relief and recreation. 


The event was scaled up with the support of a generous contribution that arrived earlier last month.  


“We found out we had funding less than a month ago, and we asked the team to try to come up with something,” said CBCT Supervisor Becky Straub. “They had this fountain of beautiful ideas for really fun stuff.” 


Clients and families had access to games, free sensory items, a photo booth, and joined staff to make a large, painted banner.  


Clients and families used paint to tie-dye t-shirts.


CBCT Clinician Elisa Moreira, who took the lead on organizing the project, said clients benefit from being able to interact with their clinicians in a more relaxed environment.  


“Events like this are a great opportunity for families and kids to come together and have some good family bonding, but also at the same time, get to know more of the staff who work here,” Moreira said. “People show up to events and get to meet us, and it makes it more personal, and they’re more likely to come to other events in the future. It kind of creates that community.” 


The community-focused nature of these types of events – and C4’s work more broadly – also helps make seeking services less of a “stigmatizing thing,” Straub said. During a time in which youth self-reported trauma, stress, and anxiety are on the rise, ensuring that mental health treatment is both easy and socially acceptable to access is more important than ever. 


“One of my clients actually came with an extended family member, and he was showing off this place he gets to come to every week, and he was proud of it,” she added. “It makes such a difference.” 


Youth Intervention Clinical Supervisor Crystal Swenson paints her hand to add a print to the banner.


These events possess incredible potential to strengthen community bonds and promote a sense of togetherness. Help C4 create inclusive spaces where families can find support and build new friendships by donating today at