I’m Vanessa Calagna and I am so thrilled to be a part of Willsey Connections. Working with Pam and coaching young women and girls is a natural extension of both my passion and my background. I hold a bachelors degree in Women’s Studies and a Master’s Degree in Counseling and Psychology. I am also a certified Wisdom Kids Coach.
In the last several years, while co-facilitating the Grrrls Connection group with Pam, I became increasingly aware of my own young children’s development. I noticed, that around the 3rd grade, most children begin to flex their social muscles (independent of their parents) and the early seeds of their first and, sometimes, life long friendships are sown. This can be a very hard time for both kids and parents, as most kids experience hurt feelings, social exclusion and a decrease in their self esteem, often for the very first time. . So hard, right?
With Pam’s encouragement, I decided to launch our elementary age group, called TheKidzConnection, for girls ages 8-11.
While the group focuses on many areas of self awareness and development, one of the basic threads throughout is self esteem (how we feel about ourselves) and self confidence (how we feel about our ability to succeed). When children feel empowered to choose how they are going respond to the situations in their life, it’s a game changer for their self confidence. Sustaining a solid connection to themselves and others is — of course– a central theme throughout all of our sessions.
Young children often find themselves internalizing their experiences and thus creating a limiting belief system or sense of self, “I wasn’t invited to Susie’s party, it must mean nobody likes me”, “I missed the game winning goal in the soccer game today, I probably shouldn’t even play this stupid sport.” As a parent, you may have already heard similar crushing statements from your own children’s mouths.
The mission of TheKidzConnection is to help children shift their power and turn those limiting beliefs into supportive ones. When children have positive self esteem and self confidence, they believe in themselves and they trust their own unique ability to handle life’s many difficult situations. They are also less likely to fall to peer pressure and more willing to challenge themselves, rather than let fear or obstacles diminish their dreams.
TheKidzConnection is designed to help our young girls shift their power, create self-esteem and self-confidence and we would welcome the chance to work with your daughter.