The founders of HALO Project came together with a similar goal: Bring lasting healing to foster and adopt families. We believed we had finally found a solution to help families heal and wanted to bring it to Oklahoma. The amazing methods and research interventions designed by Dr. Karyn Purvis and Dr. David Cross from Texas Christian University renewed hope in all of us.
We knew we had a large task ahead and we refused to settle for anything less than best practices. We threw our hearts, minds and compassion into the development of this project. All the clinicians associated with the project donated their time and expertise to make it successful. We told ourselves we would do one round, analyze the data and decide if we should continue. Since we were volunteering our time and utilizing precious community donations we wanted nothing less than five miracles for five families.
After reviewing the results we are overwhelmed and overjoyed by the success of the project. Here is what the five families had to say about HALO Project:
Mother (1): It was frustrating! I would try to get her to talk to me or understand the reasoning behind what I wanted her to do and it rarely worked. She would get very emotional and shut down. The phrases and language we used rarely worked.
Father (1): Frustrating.
Mother (2): Family life before HALO was very chaotic and stressful. I was becoming very depressed because I had no desire to even be around my child. I so desperately wanted to connect with her and find joy in spending time together. I couldn’t figure out why she acted the way she did and definitely didn’t know how to manage her behavior. Even after a year in family therapy we were lost in how to help her.
Father (2): Before Halo we were frustrated. We constantly sent our child to timeout, which didn't work and not only left us frustrated but our child as well. We knew she came from a hard place but we didn't grasp that what we thought of as normal parenting styles would not work.
Mother (3): Family life before HALO was chaotic, exhausting, and frustrating. Our daughter couldn’t make a right decision and we always at our wits end. We were ready to give up and wanted out.
Father (3): Parenting and family life was pleasant and enjoyable prior to adoption of 2 precious, fragile and hurting girls. It then became an unbelievable series of trials, fights, tantrums; always ending with questioning the decision to adopt and wondering if I had ruined the lives of my first 3 kids.
Mother & Father (4): With regards to foster kids, before HALO, I lived feeling guilty because I felt incapable of understanding what was going on with the children. Due to my misunderstanding of their situation, I punished them by sending them to their rooms and losing my patience, while I never do that with my own biological son. I felt I was incapable and a horrible foster mom.
Mother(5): Family life was pretty good; there were some frustration with trying to get little people to cooperate. We used time out a lot and redirection. And sometimes just ignored the behavior.
Mother (1): It is AMAZING! Learning specific phrases to use when talking to her has allowed me to communicate with her so much more effectively.
Father (1): Less frustrating.
Mother (2): Life after HALO is so much more peaceful and filled with hope I feel connected with her and enjoy our time together I have an understanding of how to “coach” her and look at parenting as team work instead of just bossing her around all the time.
Father (2): Family life after Halo is still a challenge however we are now equipped with proper and effective techniques.
Mother (3): Family life now is doable and peaceful. It’s still challenging and we have to be quick on our feet to remember our new language and skills, but there’s less yelling and frustration. We are finally bonding with our child instead of feeling helpless.
Father (3): There is hope. It is still a day-to-day endevour. There is never a moment of parenting “autopilot.” I am mentally exhausted as I try to decode every situation and recall the strategies to employ. But again, there is hope. There is more connection. There are times of peace in the home again.
Mother and Father (4) I feel capable, full of hope, compassion, able to love them and understanding how they are. I feel prepared and up to the challenge at hand.
Mother(5): Family life has been become a lot less chaotic, because I have better tools to work with the children. I have a better understand of my child’s mind set.
Mother (1): It showed us how to parent and to respond to the child in a manner that was more calm and beneficial to all.
Father (1): The HALO project provided many less obvious ways to connect and communicate with children.
Mother (2): HALO has been more than a benefit to our family, it’s truly been a blessing We now have an understanding of where she came from and how her little brain works This has brought on so much compassion for her and gives us different eyes to see her with HALO has given us tools to parent with and in return gives me the confidence to raise this sweet girl.
Father (2): Halo has greatly benefited our family, it has opened up our child. She now expresses her feelings, which is great. She now self regulates whenever she is upset, which is just the tip of the ice berg when it comes to positive behavior. Now when she has done something inappropriate she will ask for a re-do.
Mother (3): HALO taught us a new language to communicate with our child. We now understand where she came from, how her mind works, and how her brain is wired. I now feel some compassion and understanding about her behavior.
Father (3): It helped me understand the extent of the hurt/brokenness that my girls have experienced and it has affected everything that I take for granted regarding “normal” development.
Mother and Father (4): It benefited both my husband and I with new technical terms and mnemonic devices to deal with their behavior with patience and compassion. Being able to have options to punishment opened new doors and possibilities to handle stressful situations. It also enabled a new trust-based relationship where the child substituted her fears with sincere love. She enjoys being with her new family. She is truly happier and so are we!
Mother(5): This program provided nuggets of information that helped me direct my child. Learning the Redo process helped me to understand how to teach my child a better behavior. The time in also helps with those tough moments. I have stated on the sticker chart, they like that a lot. The one on one time, help me to understand how to play better with them.
Mother (1): I love the skills that we learned. The 5 minutes a day was very effective in our home. It allowed us an opportunity to bond as well as teach and build up our child. The language of HALO has been extremely beneficial. Prior to HALO, I would say the same thing in several different ways. Learning the phrases in HALO has helped me communicate with our child in a language we both understand.
Father (1): The fact that it helped. The content of the course was supported by research. The facilitator was willing to answer tough questions.
Mother (2): Some of my favorite aspects of HALO Connecting with other families that are in the same boat, having (my child) set up in all the therapy she needs with everyone on the same page, seeing all the research on children from hard places and learning about how their brains work differently from ours, I LOVE that the parents get training and the children are also learning from their buddies at the same time!
Father (2): My favorite aspect is that we now have proper techniques to help our child in tough situations.
Mother (3): My favorite aspects of HALO are learning and understanding where my child came from, the skills, learning a new language, being taught how to speak and relate to my child, all they did for the kids, the videos that show examples of the skills put into action and the in-home therapy.
Father (3): Seeing the concepts and principles in action.
Mother and Father (4): I enjoyed the 5 minute one-on-one time with my child. This technique helped deepened our relationship a great deal. I liked the “who is the boss” and “using your words” session. Understanding that I can share power with the child without losing control has helped me feel more secure in my parenting role. What I liked the most overall is the “Teaching Topics for Trauma Education Classes based on TBRI”. This learning aid and explanatory chart has helped me to have the necessary logical and emotional framework necessary to understand the child (and myself) better in order to create a new, fresher relationship bond. I can see the child with new, more compassionate eyes.
Mother(5): I enjoyed the class time, getting to listen to the other families and the situation they were going through. It was also nice to hear the progress they were making and I got ideas from the other families.
Mother (1): YES!! Not just adopted parents. I believe that because of our experience this will improve our foster parenting dramatically! I think ALL foster parents should go through a course like HALO. Our child(ren) are not yet adopted and this has had such a positive effect on our relationship with our foster children that I believe it will do the same for others.
Father (1): Yes. The HALO project provided us another tool to help the children cope and eventually thrive in their adverse situations.
Mother (2): I feel like HALO has been the life vest thrown to us as we were about to drown and I wish every family with kids from hard places could get this training I would highly recommend this program to others for the understanding and compassion they would gain for their children.
Father (2): I definitely recommend The Halo program and I have, not just to our friends that also have children from hard places, but friends that have children of their own.
Mother (3): I highly recommend this program to any family feeling frustrated, hopeless and ready to quit. I believe this program gives them the best chance to save their family and bod with their child.
Father (3): Yes, see answers 1-4.
Mother and Father (4): Definitely, yes. Because it is the best way that I have found, in all my years of fostering, to understand and be able to help the kids.
Mother(5): I would definitely recommend the program for families with kids from hard places. The program educates parents about their child’s mind set. It also provides nuggets of information that can help redirect and teach your child better behavior.
Founded in 2013, HALO Project is a 501 (c) 3 non-profit, with the mission of healing children from hard places in need.
At HALO, we place the desire to serve children from hard places above the desire for self-gain and remain humble as we serve. We believe healing is possible and attainable.
To Donate, please mail contributions to:
PO Box `14060
Oklahoma City, OK 73113