Sharing Our Strength’s (SOS), Missouri’s parent to parent/peer support network for parents of children with developmental disabilities or special healthcare needs, individuals with disabilities, and professionals. You may have questions and concerns about dealing with your child’s needs and your own feelings. You are not alone. We have been there. Let us be there for you.
An SOS mentor is a parent* who has had experiences or concerns similar to those you are having now. They have “been there”. Your SOS mentor is there for you to talk to. You can share your feelings, frustrations, or celebrations. They are there to listen with an open heart and open mind. Remember, they have had experiences similar to yours!
Mentors help provide you with:
After gathering as much information as you wish to share, we will find a match as close as possible to your specifications by searching our database of SOS mentors (made up of parents of children with disabilities or special healthcare needs, extended family members, people with disabilities, and professionals).
Once a mentor is found, with your permission, they will be provided with your phone number and/or email address. Most SOS match contacts are made by telephone, but can also be by email. The mentor will call you as soon as possible, usually within a couple of days.
One of our staff will follow up with you from time to time, just to see how the match is going and if you are getting the support that you need. If at any time you don’t feel like the person you are matched with is right for you, let the coordinator know and another match can be arranged.
There are several ways to start the matching process:
After we receive your request, we will ask you a few questions about your situation, and talk to you about what kind of a match you would like. Parent to parent or peer support matches can be based on type of disability, geographic location, particular concerns or issues, such as surgeries, medication, treatments, or behavior issues, or any other number of factors. It is up to you!
*Remember, SOS matches are free and confidential. What you share with your mentor stays between the two of you!
*Mentors do not provide medical advice or formal counseling. They don’t give advice, but speak from their own experiences, and always leave decisions up to you!
* SOS also provides peer matches for individuals with disabilities, extended family members or professionals.