Children and Teens Speak

Children and Teens Speak is a free, in-person Rainbows for All Children support group for children whose parents are navigating a separation or divorce. Children and Teens Speak is sponsored and supervised by the Circuit Court of Cook County Domestic Relations Division's Family Court Services department, and run by students seeking a master’s degree in Counseling at the Family Institute at Northwestern University, and who are trained and certified as Rainbows facilitators. 

The program is secular and designed for any youth, ages 5-17, and from any background who is experiencing their parents’ separation or divorce.  The program is not therapy or counseling. Program participants can learn to grieve, to communicate, and to heal among peers, helping them to feel less alone in their grief and to gain confidence that only peer support can provide. Participants are divided into two age groups: one for ages 5-11 and another for ages 12-17. Younger children will be considered on a case-by-case basis. 

During the program, participants will:

  • Meet other youth who are experiencing similar life-changing events;
  • Learn to identify and to use appropriate and effective coping skills;
  • Begin to understand that separation and divorce is not their fault;
  • Have an opportunity to share their worries and fears in a safe environment;
  • Start to develop and strengthen their problem-solving skills; and
  • Learn how to manage anger, stress and anxiety 

The Children and Teens Speak program meets on a scheduled Saturday once a month for four hours in the Family Court Services office on the 10th Floor of the Dunne Administration Building in downtown Chicago. Snacks and drinks are served. Participation is by court order only. 

For more information, please call Family Court Services at (312) 603-1540.