Ele's Place Promoting Recently-Opened 'Teen Zone'

By: Anthony Sabella Email
By: Anthony Sabella Email

"It's about enjoying each other, having fun, getting to know each other and trusting each other," said Lori Bosch, Managing Director for Ele's Place.

Strong words from teenagers, like 'I'm not alone' and 'You were my hero' line a board in the new 'Teen Zone' at Ele's Place.

The facility helps the non-profit's teenagers who have lost a loved one.

"It's about enjoying each other, having fun, getting to know each other and trusting each other," said Lori Bosch, Managing Director for Ele's Place.

After years without a space of their own, Ele's Place spent the last two-and-a-half years converting a basement storage space into a place for grieving teenagers to gather.

"A lot of key members of the community came together," said Bosch. "We had Celink, we had King Custom Homes come together and just a lot of donors."

On August 27th, the non-profit held a ribbon cutting for the facility, which includes a game room and art room, along with space for its middle school and high school-aged groups.

For the last two weeks, Bosch says the teen zone has given the teenagers a better opportunity to get to know one another, ultimately helping them in their groups.

After four teens were shot just off the Sexton High School grounds, last week, Ele's Place is prepared to help more.

"When that occurred at Sexton, we know that there are a lot of kids, who that triggers their feelings of loss," said Bosch.

Even though there were no deaths that day, Bosch says the trauma is still there.

"Those are kids we could already know," she said. "Those are kids who are going to need support, so we hope we get those calls when a crisis occurs like that."

But the call is the easy part. Getting the teens in the door is another story. Bosch says that age group is often the most difficult to convince to get help.

"Teens sometimes think they can handle on their own, so it's very important that when children and teens do come to Ele's Place that they are comfortable that this is a place where I want to go," said Bosch.

So far, the Teen Zone is helping with that. For more information on the teen-oriented programs at Ele's Place, call (517) 482-1315, or visit elesplace.org.


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