Most of us are surrounded by children in our lives. Even if we don’t have children ourselves, or they are all grown up, we are around grandchildren, cousins, nieces and nephews or just children of friends and neighbors. What a blessing these relationships can be for everyone. Unfortunately, there are a lot of children growing up in toxic stress environments. One never truly knows what is happening inside the home.
Childhood experiences, both positive and negative, have a tremendous impact on the future of these young lives. Studies show that these experiences impact health, mental wellness and even life span. A toxic environment can lead to health problems such as obesity, diabetes, heart disease, cancer and stroke. Depression and suicide can also plague these children throughout their lives. They may also experience higher risks of smoking, alcoholism and drug abuse. The very life potential of these precious children can be impacted when we see the effects on graduation rates, academic achievement and lost time from school and work. With their very futures at stake, don’t we owe these precious ones the most positive childhood experiences we can provide for them?
Watch Motivational Speaker Derek Clark on How Childhood Trauma Starts and the Power of Resilience.
It is clear we need to focus on connecting with hurt and grieving children. We know children are very resilient but they need at least one adult in their lives that will care for them. If we can connect with them at an early age, we may be able to stop them from medicating their pain with alcohol and drugs. If we can come alongside them with compassion and empathy we may be able to spare them a life time of depression or even suicide. If we can challenge them to believe in their abilities and to see their unlimited potential, these children can even attain a life of excellence. If we strive to make connections with a child and be a beacon of light in their life we may just make a world of difference for a little one that was born into a very dark home life.
Derek Clark was just such a child. At an early age Derek was subjected to an extremely toxic stressful environment. From neglect to child abuse, he experienced the pain. From poverty and homelessness, he has endured it all. From substance abuse to death, he has witnessed it. In spite of all this tragedy in his early life, Derek was able to move through this pain into a life truly blessed. He was fortunate to have a few people come alongside him who lived compassion and spoke affirmation into his life enabling him to be the man he is today. Derek speaks to audiences worldwide with his message of forgiveness, healing and hope for the future. His passion is to encourage and inspire others as he was so many years ago. Derek Clark is a transformational speaker bringing hope to the hopeless as only someone who has walked in their shoes can.