Leslie - R.I.S.K. Founder
I started R.I.S.K. with one single goal-pull parents, professionals, care givers and grandparents together to start a conversation about what is confronting those of us who are raising kids. As parents of two children, my husband Tony and are committed to “paying it forward” after all of the support we received when we were confronting parenting issues with our teenager that changed our lives in only a few short weeks.
Tony and I learned that are no easy answers, but through a series of trial and error with our own situation, we need the resources and support to be knowledgeable about what our kids face everyday. We are no experts, but we never gave up on our family or our child. One of the questions we asked ourselves many times, is how do you “parent” with so many different outside influences on our kids, once they walk out that front door each day? From the time they are little, we lay the groundwork for molding them into adults. Then they start to gain independence and that groundwork is tested and sometimes seems to crumble for some families. The best way I can explain to people about what we went through is that we were “deer in the headlights.” This was uncharted territory for us and it was scary. Sleepless nights, constant stress, the lack of communication with our child and the concern for a younger child at home, made for some very tough times. Seeking help was difficult and we hit a lot of dead ends. There were days that I wondered if we would ever find peace in our family again. We have made a lot of progress, but through it all, I have learned that we are not alone. Now our goal is to reach out to all families to help prevent what happened to our family or to help heal another family going through similar circumstances.
Through our efforts with R.I.S.K. we want to provide parents the support to know if what they are seeing is a phase or a problem, to know that there are many resources available to help them with whatever their child is dealing with, and to connect professionals, law enforcement, non-profits, educators and parents.
Leslie Nicholson, Executive Director
Thank you to the following members below who continue to help us on our journey!
Task Force Members
Silvia Floriano, Community Service Officer, Sonoma County Sheriffs Department