Parenting is hard, and the past year was especially challenging for parents of school-aged kids, as they struggled to juggle their children’s virtual school and the loss of many activities and in-person contact with friends.
The goal of MASK (Mothers Awareness on School-Age Kids) is to provide resources for parents, children, schools, and communities that address the challenges facing families and empower children to make safe and healthy choices. MASK is a nonprofit organization founded in 2007, and has evolved into a multimedia format that includes a website, a print magazine, an app, a digital learning platform, and a series of YouTube videos.
MASK tackles topics that include managing peer pressure, coping with trauma, and negotiating the peaks and valleys of social media, which can be especially challenging as families restore their networks and return to in-person school and activities.
“MASK programs teach children and their families how to handle the ever-changing landscape that our children are living in,” says Kimberly Cabral, CEO, founder, and publisher of MASK.
Parents and their kids can engage with the MASK tools to build life skills and promote self-esteem through any or all of these options:
– MASKMatters app. Download the app on Apple or Google Play (also available in Spanish) for easy access to age-appropriate life skills resources that can be used by students, parents, and teachers.
– MASK Magazine. For those who like their information in print, MASK Magazine is a quarterly parenting manual and is also available through Zinio digital. Each issue focuses on a specific topic, such as Internet safety, with details on how it impacts children from preschool to college.
– MASK E3 Institute: The digital platform for MASK can be used by schools, community organizations, or families at home. The Institute is designed as a series of year-long comprehensive programs for different age groups: MASK Storytime for pre-K children, MASK Academy for kindergarten through sixth grade, MASK Prep for middle and high school students, and MASK Leadership for college students. Each of the age-appropriate programs teaches kids social skills and educates them about topics such as bullying, drug and alcohol use, and staying safe online.
– MASK + Live: MASK offers a series of YouTube videos featuring feature medical doctors, clinical psychologists, professors, and other child health professionals who share their expertise on parenting and offer advice on physical health, mental health, and enhancing your relationship with your child.
Visit maskmatters.org for more information about the full range of MASK materials and programs.