Therapeutic Focus Groups at Cherokee Creek Boys School

By Christy Swafford, Assistant Admissions Director, Cherokee Creek Boys School

Therapeutic Focus Groups - PerseveranceWe have some wonderful therapeutic focus groups at Cherokee Creek Boys School. We rotate these groups every few months. The boys are learning important information and life skills from these teaching interactions.

One of the focus groups is named “Perserverance”. Perservance teaches our students how to preserve through some tough tasks which are exhibited in ‘hard skills’. Hard skills, for example, can refer to the survival skills learned in wilderness programs. Some of our students that haven’t been exposed to the wilderness in the past really benefit from acquiring these hard skills, which in turn teach resilience and perseverance.

Therapeutic Focus Groups - PerseveranceAs CCBS Therapist Christy Todd explains: “Perseverance teaches motivation, follow through with goals, and the thrill of success when you stay your course.  One of our projects is to ‘bust a coal’ with a bow drill set.  We gathered materials such as pine saplings and pine boards, created top rocks out of river rocks and quartz, and whittled materials into shape.  After weeks of preparation, the boys learned the most effective technique of moving the bow to turn the spindle, which creates friction, smoke, then, finally, a coal is busted and ready for a survival fire.  After a big workout of bow drilling, seeing smoke and then a coal is an amazing reward!  Perseverance is an essential ingredient.”

Therapeutic Focus Groups - Art of ManlinessAnother therapeutic focus group we are currently running is named “The Art of Manliness”. This group is lead by CCBS Therapist Jacob Hafkin and is a fun group where boys learn how to, for example, change a tire, talk to girls (respectfully, as gentlemen), and dress for an interview.

In addition to these two therapeutic focus groups, we also have a group that teaches relaxation through yoga. Many of the boys have a negative outlook on therapy upon arriving at CCBS. We try hard to break down those barriers and have fun in the midst of working through some tough emotions and hurdles.



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