TLC Family Resource Center announces that they are the recipient of a grant from the Children’s Literacy Foundation (CLiF) through their At-Risk Children Grant Program.
The grant is given to organizations serving low-income, at-risk, and rural kids in Vermont and New Hampshire. TLC is one of 10 organizations for the Spring 2019 cycle.
The grant program includes an inspiring storytelling session with a Vermont or New Hampshire author or storyteller, a new onsite library of children’s books, an optional parent seminar on tips for sharing books with kids, and two new books for each child to choose during the storytelling session.
Executive Director Maggie Monroe-Cassel is excited about the grant.
“Reading and literacy are core components of our parent education. We provide books to expecting mother so they can begin reading to their child before he or she is born. We also have partnered with SAU 6 for a reading program for children to help them better understand diversity,” said Monroe-Cassel.
“The grant provides an excellent opportunity expand our reach and be able to share the love of reading with even more of the community through an hour of storytelling and by being able to send each child home with two books of their choosing,” she continued. “Being able to bring brand new, quality books to children who may not have them as a part of their life because of their situation is a wonderful feeling.”
Storyteller Duncan McDougall, founder of CLiF, will share stories on Thursday, March 21, from 5-6 p.m., at the Claremont Savings Bank Community Center, located at 111 South Street in Claremont. The event is free and open to anyone in the community. Each child at the event will receive two new books of their choosing. There will be books for children and youth up to early teens.
For more information about the event, please call 603-542-1848.
TLC Family Resource Center is participating in a multipronged response to the opioid epidemic with Dartmouth-Hitchcock (D-H) by directly connecting with parents in recovery. This delivers consistent, personalized, and targeted support to families as they navigate the challenges of parenting—while also walking the path of substance abuse recovery.
TLC is currently participating with D-H Pediatrics in Lebanon and Valley Regional Pediatrics in Claremont through the Recovery-Friendly Pediatrics program, which is generously funded by the Couch Family Foundation. Staff members from TLC and The Family Place in Norwich spend time each week at the pediatric offices to introduce families to their programs. Their presence at the practices helps to eliminate barriers to program access for parents in recovery and serves to support children and families with needed resources.
Surveys conducted by D-H prior to the program development showed providers were spending approximately 50 percent of their patient time on social determinants of health resources—yet families reported feeling they weren’t receiving enough support in this area.
Holly Gaspar, Community Health Partnership coordinator for D-H’s Community Health Improvement, along with her team worked closely with Steven H. Chapman, MD, a pediatrician at the Children’s Hospital at Dartmouth-Hitchcock (CHaD) and the medical director for the Boyle Community Pediatrics Program, to design and launch Recovery-Friendly Pediatrics in response to the needs identified.
The ultimate goal of the program is to support families in recovery across support organizations, in order to protect vulnerable children and prevent adverse childhood experiences. These toxic stress experiences are proven to have long-term health implications—including heart disease, diabetes and often future substance abuse—for people with two to four adverse childhood experiences.
Sometimes parents in recovery are wary of trusting new people and programs, are embarrassed to reach out and/or believe they won’t qualify for services, according to Gaspar.
“The benefit of Recovery-Friendly Pediatrics is placing family resource program staff in the pediatrician’s office—a trusted environment—to educate, build rapport and enroll families after an introduction from their pediatrician or nurse,” she said.
From the introduction, the family resource center staff can share their programs, like “Growing Great Kids.” The program has trained educators helping to strengthen bonds between parents and children to prevent abuse and neglect, according to Maggie Monroe-Cassel, executive director of TLC.
“It’s important for our educators to tell parents they’re doing a good job, or point out, ‘Look at how she loves you. Look how she’s looking into your eyes,’” said Monroe-Cassel. “Maybe mom won’t use drugs that day. Building trust between parents and educators leads to very strong relationships, and parents will listen to that person.”
Other community pediatric practices are interested in joining this effort to eliminate health care silos. The program is continuing to evolve and is fine-tuning the best days and times to staff resource tables, encourage families to talk and process intake information on-site.
“This is one of the best opportunities I have seen to provide recovery and parenting skills so babies are off to a good start,” Chapman says. “It’s helping us design a better system of care. This is the most meaningful work I’ve been a part of.”
For more information about Recovery-Friendly Pediatrics, contact Holly Gaspar at email@example.com. For more information about TLC and the programs they offer, please visit tlcfamilyrc.org or call 603-542-1848.
Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) are an increasing area of interest among researchers, practitioners, and policymakers. As this field of study grows, an equity lens can facilitate a greater understanding of the structural, historic, and systemic contexts that relate to limited ACEs data for American Indians and Alaska Natives (AI/ANs), as well as disparate exposures to ACEs among this population. Three factors are important to consider in support of more equitable outcomes: AI/AN population characteristics, historical trauma and resilience, and tribal sovereignty.
First, characteristics of the AI/AN population require concerted efforts by researchers to include this population in the rapidly developing ACEs field. The population’s size and diversity, age distribution, and percentage of children living in poverty underscore this consideration. In the United States, an estimated 5.6 million people (1.7 percent of the total population) self-identify as AI/AN alone or in combination with one or more other races, and there are currently 573 federally recognized tribes.
[Read more here.]
By Melony Williams
Two years ago I attended The Prevent Child Abuse America Conference in Ohio and during the lunch hour, they screened the film, “Resilience.” I was amazed by how well the film presented the effects of Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) and thought about how much I wanted to show this to parents and providers in my community.
I feel that knowledge is power and if we are able to help people understand how their past experiences affect them today, they can have more empathy for themselves and others and also make healthier choices about their own lives as well as their parenting.
I remember excitedly telling our Executive Director about “Resilience.” She researched how we could show it here and at this point we have done a number of screenings followed by discussions about how we can use the information we gained to inform our parenting, our work and our interactions in our communities.
I also started to dream about bringing Miss Kendra to the children in NH and wondered what the effect of a program that teaches kids about the norms of child safety, empathy, feeling identification and expression could be on our schools and the community as a whole.
I was recently trained with Stacey Hammerlind, Family and Community Coordinator/Family in Transition Coordinator for SAU No. 43, by the ALIVE (Animating Learning by Integrating and Validating Experiences) staff at The Posttraumatic Stress Center in New Haven, CT to facilitate the Miss Kendra’s List Program.
The Legend of Miss Kendra is a story about a woman who has experienced her own adversity, the death of a child, which inspires her to help other children and listen to their worries. In the story, Miss Kendra gives read beads to children who are brave enough to share their worries so they have a symbol of their own strength to overcome challenges. Miss Kendra’s list came out of all the worries the children shared, and is comprised of 7 rules about how children should be treated and 5 explanations of what can happen when children do not get what they need. These common sense ideas became her mantra, and were shared with teachers and other adults as a way to keep other children safe as well.
Working with the Kindergarten students in Newport, alongside their teachers and paraprofessional staff, will give these children the opportunity to learn about how children need to be kept safe, to understand their worries, to express them to caring adults and to hopefully be able to set them aside so that their minds and hearts are more open and ready to learn about academics as well as to form healthy social connections.
I am so happy that there is a “Red Bead Club” that will be offered at least twice throughout the school year. This club will enable parents to come to the school with their kindergarteners so they can also experience the positive benefits that the Miss Kendra curriculum has to offer and to help the parents to understand the program so that they are able to talk with their children about what they are learning and put the skills learned to use.
It is exciting to think about the positive effects that could happen through the partnership between TLC, the Richards Elementary Staff and the parents while we roll out the Miss Kendra's List curriculum in NH.
To learn more about this work, check out traumainformedschools.org/miss-kendras-list-and-child-safety-classroom-activities.
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At TLC Family Resource Center we support and strengthen all families, children, and youth in Sullivan and Lower Grafton counties with a wide
range of free programs, support groups, education, and events.
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PO Box 1098
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