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Social Programs



Does your child... Have a hard time making friends? Struggle with fitting in socially? Have difficulty understanding body language? Join MHA’s Friends group today! 

Friends is a social skills group for youth ages 8 to 17 or in grades 3rd-12 grade, with social, behavioral or emotional difficulties.  The goal of the program is to build the social skills of each participant while, also, creating meaningful friendships within the group.   The goal of the program is to provide a guided, nurturing environment in which social skills can be developed and practiced through interaction with peers. 

Friends program participants practice social skills with peers like: Conversation turn taking, compromising, cooperation, body language, social routines.

There is no diagnosis or medical documentation required in order to participate. A child is likely to benefit from the program if they: Have no friends or few friends; are bossy, controlling, or aggressive ; are shy, reserved, or inattentive; have trouble sharing or resolving conflicts; Are ignored, rejected, or bullied; or are rarely invited to birthday parties or play dates.

The Friends program is free! However, there may be minimal fees associated with some of the community activities. Groups meet throughout Orange County.  Transportation is not provided. 

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