Coalition’s Summer Book Read 2019

Coalition Happenings, Here at the Coalition

Let’s Read “Beneath the Mask” Together!

Please join us for the Adoptive and Foster Family Coalition of New York’s “Summer Book Read”! This year, we will be reading Beneath the Mask: Understanding Adopted Teens together.

Once again, Susan Rausch, Family Support Supervisor at the Coalition’s AGAPE Central New York office, will lead the “book club” as we read, explore and discuss Debbie Riley and Dr. John Meek’s book. As an added bonus, Debbie Riley, author and CEO at The Center for Adoption Support and Education (CASE), has also agreed to participate and will also comment and answer questions as she is able to!

How the Summer Book Read Works

The Coalition hosts the Book Club on Facebook.

This year, we shall be having two separate discussions.

There is a PUBLIC group hosted off our main AFFCNY page using the Event tools. We feel this group discussion would be best for professionals who work with adopted teens including caseworkers, therapist, psychologists, teachers, etc.

Then there will also be a PRIVATE group that will be specifically for parents of teens who were adopted or placed through foster or kinship care. This “book club” discussion will be hosted within the Coalition’s closed group, the New York Adoptive, Foster and Kinship Parenting Support Group, on Facebook. Parents can choose to be in either or both group though we recommend the private discussion if you wish to speak candidly.

Each week participants will be assigned pages to read. On Fridays, Susan will comment on the reading and propose one or two discussion questions. Participants may comment, share ideas and ask questions about the readings.  Questions will be answered by Susan, the facilitator, the author or other AFFCNY staff participating in the reading.  A lively discussion will ensue!

Join the Coalition’s Book Club

To join the online “book club”:

1) Join the public event on Facebook at Indicate that you are “going” to the event so it will prompt you each week to participate! You can use the sharing and invite tools to invite friends, family and others to the Summer Book Read. The PUBLIC discussion will be on that actual event.

2) If you are am adoptive, foster or kinship parent, join the Coalition’s Private Support Group at Please make sure you answer the three questions with your parenting status and what county you live in. For the third question, please indicate you are there form the book read, so we can approve your participation quickly. Each Friday, there will be a new discussion post (or more) about the book that you engage with. The posts will be in the main private group. Although the parenting group will be private, we can’t guarantee confidentiality on the web due to screen shots, so please do not share your children or client’s identifying information on Facebook. 

3) If you need to order the book; please consider using this link to help support the Coalition: or (just copy and paste into a new browser window)

Beginning, July 4th the facilitator will comment on the reading and propose discussion questions for the participants.  In response, participants may also comment on the reading and also share their thoughts regarding the discussion questions. Then the following week, we do it again!

Don’t worry if you miss a week or join late, feel free to jump in and catch up. We hope you can join in!

About Your Book Read Facilitators

Susan Rausch is an adoptive parent of 7 young adults and a grandparent of 5 grandchildren. Susan has been working in Human Services for 35 years in Tompkins County, New York.  She currently serves as the Family Support Supervisor for the Coalition’s AGAPE Central New York offices. She also owns and operates, Camp Earth Connection – a Natural Campground, Retreat Center and Specialized Youth Programs and Camps. Susan holds a BS from Cornell University and a MS from SUNY Cortland.  She is grateful to be able to share her experience and knowledge and serve Adoptive and Guardianship families throughout the central New York region.

Debbie B. Riley, LCMFT, C.A.S.E.’s Co-founder and Chief Executive Officer, earned her Master’s degree in Marriage and Family Therapy and her Bachelor’s Degree in Family Studies from the University of Maryland. Since C.A.S.E.’s inception in 1998, Debbie has grown the organization into a national and international mental health resource for foster and adoptive families as well as for the professionals who support them.  Among her many professional accomplishments is her co-authoring of the book, Beneath the Mask: Understanding Adopted Teens.

Let’s get reading!

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