CYFC Monthly – August 2014
Is traumatic stress infectious?
If you’ve ever felt emotionally and physically drained by your work, the October Lessons from the Field may be for you.
Do any of the following scenarios describe your work?
- You work with highly stressed and/or traumatized children (and families) everyday
- You work in an under-resourced community, school, or clinic
- The standards to which your work is held do not adequately measure the progress that your students/clients have made
- You sometimes wonder if you have had any positive impact on the children (families) you serve
- You work in an environment where there are perpetual changes in administration, policies, organizational structure, or budget
Working in a stressful climate takes its toll on our physical and mental health. Teachers, social workers, health care workers, law enforcement, and welfare workers are all subject to what researchers refer to as secondary trauma or vicarious trauma. But sometimes, we assume that others are more successful in adapting to this level of stress or we tell ourselves that since we’re trained to teach and counsel others, we should be able to do that for ourselves.Joyce Dorado works with the Healthy Environments and Response to Trauma in Schools (HEARTS) program at the University of California San Francisco. In her work Dorado finds that teachers who suffer from secondary traumatic stress may feel on-edge and hyper alert, like waiting for “the other shoe to fall,” or may feel numb or isolated and may even want to connect with others but feel too exhausted to do so. But as those who are knowledgeable about secondary traumatic stress can tell us, in order to continue to do our work well, it is helpful to acknowledge the sacrifice this work can exact from us and then to learn how to care for ourselves.
On October 30th, Lessons from the Field will feature Cynthia Packer, LICSW and Linda Gensheimer, PhD. They will provide current research about secondary traumatic stress including what this level of stress does to the brain and how to develop personal and professional resilience practices. They will discuss strategies and opportunities for reflection about ways to reach and maintain one’s own resilience. Maintaining one’s own health is an ethical issue; when one experiences secondary trauma, one’s work is less effective and further underserves those who experience their own sense of hopeless and despair.
The seminar will take place from 9:00 a.m. - 12:30 p.m., at the McNamara Alumni Center, on the Twin Cities U of M campus and broadcast to various host sites around the state and beyond. Continuing education hours have been provided through the following certifying boards: Behavioral Health and Therapy; Marriage and Family Therapy; National Council on Family Relations; Peace Officer Standards and Training; Psychology; and, Social Work. Visit our website for registration and a list of host sites.
If you have any questions about this event, please contact me.
Judy Myers, MS, RN
Social Emotional Learning and Children's Mental Health — What Can We Teach Each Other?
Cari Michaels, Extension Educator, is the featured writer for the Extension's Youth Development Insights blog. Social Emotional Learning and children's mental health: What can we learn from each other? explains about the crossroads of children's mental health and social emotional learning from a public health approach that emphasizes optimal mental health for everyone, not just those who are sick. Michaels encourages us to view children's mental health as a public health issue and understand the difference between "mental health" and "mental illness."
Register Now for Lessons from the Field! Secondary Traumatic Stress: Building Resilience for Professionals
Date: October 30, 2014
Time: 9:00 am - 12:30 pm
Cost: Student $20, Greater MN/Live web stream $25, Metro $50
Location: University of Minnesota McNamara Alumni Center and via live web stream
We invite professionals who work with traumatized children, youth and families to join us for presentations and small group conversations discussing adaptability and health maintenance. Participants will learn to integrate practices that help diminish the negative impact of secondary traumatic stress. Registration is now open!
Help Improve Collaboration Across Child Welfare and Education Systems
Attention MN Social Service Professionals! Are you interested in participating in a conversation about improving collaboration across child welfare and education systems? Sign-up to participate in a PAID focus group study (survey closed).
If you work with children involved in the child welfare system in either the education field (e.g. school social worker, teacher, counselor, dean, administrator) or in county services (e.g. social services, child protection, case worker) in Minnesota, we want to hear from you! Please fill out the brief survey form to sign up for a chance to participate in a focus group. Those selected to participate will be contacted directly for scheduling. Focus group conversations will be held between end of August and early November 2014 in locations across the state. The conversation will last approximately 2 hours, light refreshments will be provided, and attendees will be paid a $25 participation stipend and $10 mileage stipend. Recruitment ends August 31, 2014.
Benefits of Nature to Mental Health Maintenance
Judy Myers recently presented at a Children & Nature Connection Brown Bag seminar about how nature has the potential to increase resilience and decrease negative health impacts of emotional stress. Time in nature can also contribute to more engagement and enthusiasm for learning and higher scores on standardized tests. Read a summary of her presentation.
University & Community Announcements
Using the Internet for Parent Education — Research Update for Professionals
University of Minnesota Extension
Date: Registration available through August 1, 2015
Earn four clock hours while learning more about using the Internet for parent education. Differences in Internet usage by age, gender and socioeconomic status and other demographic variables will be discussed. You will also learn about current research on how professionals have incorporated technology into parent education and analyze current best practices in reaching parents through technology. Contact Jodi Dworkin with questions.
Community Research Institute Request for Applications
University of Minnesota Programs in Health Disparities Research
University of Minnesota's Clinical and Translational Science Institute, Center for Health Equity and Program in Health Disparities Research is offering a six-week training opportunity for local leaders and staff from community organizations. It is designed to enhance the capacity of community organizational leaders and staff in health-related research. This will help participants develop and conduct grant-fundable research projects and/or increase capacity to develop research partnerships. Applications due August 25, 2014.
Parenting in the Age of Overindulgence: How to Prevent the "I Wants" Online Course for Parents
University of Minnesota Extension Center for Family Development
Learn to define overindulgence and tools to identify and address it through this free, one hour, online course. See real examples of overindulgence in families and hear ideas for addressing these situations. Register now for this free one hour course. After completion, you will receive a certificate of completion and printable PDFs of all tools in the course.
Creating Accountable Communities for Health: Catalyzing Integrative Approaches to Obesity and Mental Health
Date: September 22, 2014
Time: 8:00 am - 5:00 pm
Location: Duluth Entertainment and Convention Center (DECC)
Attendees will learn from national leaders and engage in facilitated dialogue and workshops to explore shared solutions for the most identified community health needs — obesity prevention and mental health. Dr. Mimi Guarneri, Scott Shannon, M.D., Debra Nankivell, and Larry Yee will present ways to create healthy, resilient communities. By thinking differently, the health and socio-economic conditions in communities can be improved by understanding the complex relationships between community issues such as food access, employment, mental health, and health.
Strategies for Trauma Awareness and Resilience — The STAR Training
Date: September 8-12, 2014
Location: Hamline University, St. Paul MN
STAR training teaches professionals, paraprofessionals and volunteers how to be trauma-informed and resilience-oriented in one's life, family, work and community. This course has academic and experiential curriculum that integrates concepts of neurobiology, trauma healing and resilience, restorative justice, nonviolent conflict transformation, and broadly defined spirituality in a manner that makes it accessible to all trainees. You will also be eligible for 27 hours of CEU's.
Parent Advocacy Workshop — "Telling Your Story So Others Will Listen"
Parent Catalyst Leadership Group
Date: September 13, 2014
Time: 9:00 am - 12:00 pm
Location: Oak Grove Middle School, Educational Services Building Door C
1300 West 106th Street, Bloomington, MN
Register for this fun, interactive workshop where you will learn effective communication strategies and ways to make your own story compelling enough that policymakers and professionals will listen. Longtime disability advocate and legislative expert Kim Kang will be presenting.
Minnesota Alliance with Youth — Multiple Openings
myHealth for Teens & Young Adults — Mental Health Therapist [no longer active]