2006 Conference Workshops

Workshop Period 1 • 10:30-12:00 Noon

1. The Color of Child Welfare Policy – An examination of the disproportionate number of children of color in foster care. An overview of the data on and causes of over representation. Suggestions for addressing this growing problem. Ruth McRoy, McRoy Davis and Associates

2. Permanent Parents for Teens in Group Care – You Gotta Believe! Family Permanency Advocates based at residential treatment centers and group homes describe success in finding permanent parents for resident youth. Panel. Pat O’Brien, Moderator, You Gotta Believe!

3. Mediation for Child Permanency – A report on NYS’s child welfare mediation projects. How are they doing? What are the outcomes for children and families? Frank Woods, NYS Unified Court System

Mediation in NYS: a Multi-Site Project (pdf)

4. Adoptive Family Therapy: A New Approach – Presenting a new therapeutic model with four key components. Intervention strategies and tips for success. Barry Chaffkin, CT Wocat

5. Separation and Loss: The Aftereffects – The impact of separation and loss on adopted and foster children throughout life’s stages, including the effects on life choices and adult relationships. Sue Badeau, Badeau Consulting.

Workshop Period 2 • 1:45-3:15 p.m.

6. Open Adoption: Over the Long Run – Longitudinal and other studies provide valuable information regarding the long term impact of open adoption on children and family relationships. Implications for policy and practice. Ruth McRoy, McRoy Davis and Associates. Workshop Handouts:

The MN/TX Adoption Research Project (MTARP) on Openness in Adoption

7. Square Peg Teens in Round Hole Programs: Let’s Stop the Insanity – An exploration of the urgent need for permanent families-not short term placements-for teens before they leave foster care. Pat O’Brien, You Gotta Believe!

8. ICAMA: The Benefits to Children and Families – The value of the Interstate Compact on Adoption and Medical Assistance (ICAMA), how it works, and advantages of NYS membership. Sharen Ford, Colorado Department of Human Services

9. Inducement and Acting Out Behaviors – Understanding inducement and the impact of abandonment on multiply rejected children to help families deal with negative behaviors and strengthen relationships. Tito Del Pilar, Family Focus Adoption Services. Workshop Handouts:

The Realities of Adoption: Abandonment, Inducement, and Transference

10. Children of Incarcerated Parents – Understanding the feelings of prisoners’ children. What to say, how to assist, and an overview of NYS prison practice and policy. Alison Coleman, Prison Families of NY, Inc.

Prison Families of New York

Workshop Period 3 • 3:35-5:05 p.m.

11. Special Needs Adoptions: What Have We Learned? – A discussion of the factors associated with successful adoptive families. What works, and what challenges remain. Ruth McRoy, McRoy Davis and Associates.  Workshop Handouts

Successful Adoptive Families (pdf)

12. Unconditional Commitment: The Only Love that Matters – Unconditional commitment is the true source of healing for any child. How to make sure every placement sticks. Pat O’Brien, You Gotta Believe! Workshop Handouts:

Unconditional Committment: The Only Love that Matters

13. Adoptive Parents’ Right to Information – Entitlement to your child’s health, social, and placement history, health history of birthparents and other relevant information. Implications for adoption subsidy. What is your recourse when there are problems? Michael Neff

14. Marriage as a Balance Beam – Suggestions for increasing the satisfactions and keeping the stressors under control in any parenting partnership, even with challenging kids. Maris Blechner, Family Focus Adoption Services

15. “My Life, My Voice, My Future”: Involving Youth in Family Court – Why it’s important to involve foster care youth in the court and how to implement an effective program. Sue Badeau, Badeau Consulting; Madelyn Freundlich, Excal Consulting Partners. Workshop Handouts:

Involving Youth in Family Court

Workshop Period 4 • 8:30-9:50 a.m.

16. “I’m at My Wit’s End”: Discipline and Special Needs Adoption – Therapeutic parenting skills to survive the daily challenges and help children change their way of being in the world. Holly van Gulden, Adoptive Family Counseling Center. Workshop Handouts:

Discipline and The Adopted Child with Special Needs

17. NYS’s New Permanency Procedures – Important changes in permanency hearing laws, the foster parent’s roles and responsibilities, and benefits to children. Margaret Burt . Workshop Handouts:

See Foster Care Legal Issues for updated articles by Atty Burt on issues addressed in the workshop

 18. Lifebooks: Preserving Your Child’s Story – The importance of a Lifebook to document a foster or adopted child’s history, build attachment, work through old hurts, and develop positive self identity. Diane DiGiorgio, SUNY Albany. Workshop Handouts:

Lifebook Resources

 19. “Let’s All Play Nice”: Teamwork Benefits Children! – Developing trust, clarifying roles, and sharing a vision to best meet the needs of children and families. Maris Blechner, Family Focus Adoption Services; Barry Chaffkin, CT Wocat (Changing the World One Child at a Time).

20. Retaining Prospective Adoptive and Foster Parents – Hundreds of NYS families have been recruited through the national AdoptUsKids campaign. How have they fared? What we’ve learned from their experiences. Judith Ashton, NYS Citizens’ Coalition for Children, Inc.

Workshop Period 5 • 10:05-11:25 a.m.

21. Understanding Adolescence – Fundamental issues for all adolescents and the added baggage for adopted adolescents. Strategies to support and guide young adults through the challenges. Holly van Gulden, Adoptive Family Counseling Center. Workshop Handouts:

Adolescence: Redoing Childhood in a Different Way

22. The ABCs of TPRs – Understanding termination of parental rights proceedings, and the new legal procedures to advance permanent outcomes for foster children. Margaret Burt

See Foster Care Legal Issues for updated articles by Atty Burt on issues addressed in the workshop.

 23. When Your Child Has Significant Mental Health Issues – What adoptive parents need, how to support them, and how they can access services. Ways to help avoid out of home placements. Suzanne d’Aversa, Parsons Child and Family Center; Lisa Trudeau, adoptive parent. Workshop Handouts:

Twenty Things Parents Wish Providers Knew and Would Remember! (pdf)

24. Sharing the Spotlight: Non-Adopted White Siblings in Transracial Families – Research findings and compelling testimonies on racism and their parents’ decisions to adopt from white adults who grew up with brothers and sisters of color. John Raible, University of Massachusetts.

25. When Adoption and Learning/Attention Difficulties Overlap – The interaction between LD/ADHD and adoption. How families can best manage the issues involved. Sue Badeau, Badeau Consulting

Workshop Period 6 • 11:40-1:00 p.m.

26. Learning the Dance of Attachment – A guide to building and maintaining healthy attachments, and techniques for responding to difficult behaviors. Holly van Gulden, Adoptive Family Counseling Center. Workshop Handouts:

New Responses to Old Behaviours (pdf)

The Stable Child (pdf)

 27. Conditional Surrenders – A discussion of the new enforceability standards and other recent changes in NYS law that affect conditional surrenders and open adoptions. Margaret Burt

See Foster Care Legal Issues for updated articles by Atty Burt on issues addressed in the workshop

 28. You’re a What? Issues of Gay and Lesbian Identity – What are the strengths of LGBTQ youth? How to deal with issues of disclosure and build supports and programs to meet their needs. Miriam Yeung, The Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Community Center

29. When Foster Children Go Home: Preparation Tools – How foster parents and others can help assure a smooth transition for children who go home to birth parents, relatives, adoptive parents, or others. Madhu Kapoor, Family Support Systems Unlimited

30. Effects of Abuse/Neglect on Early Brain Development – What areas of the brain are most affected? What are the effects in later life? A discussion in layman’s terms to understand why some behavior patterns can be hard to change. Suzanne d’Aversa, Parsons Child and Family Center

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