Need help deciding which workshops to choose? Below the workshops are listed by a range of topics. See full workshop descriptions and scheduled times.

 

Therapeutic Techniques

1A—Treatment Strategies for Children Who Are Highly Reactive

Lisa Merrifield, PhD, Psychologics, PC, Nebraska • David Rehovsky, LIMHP & Linda Rehovsky, LIMHP, Old Mill Counseling, Nebraska

3A—Making the Pain Go Away: Trauma and Teen Substance Abuse

Ken Huey, PhD, Kokua Recovery, Colorado

4A—Neurofeedback: Healing Traumatized Children

Arleta James, LPCC, Adoption and Attachment Therapy Partners, Ohio

5A—Implementing Adoption-Competency Training for Professionals

Edna Davis-Brown, MPH, Center for Adoption Support and Education, Maryland • Bonni Goodwin, LMSW, University of Oklahoma, Zarrow School of Social Work • Rebecca Sharp, South Carolina Department of Social Services

6A—Comprehensive Family Treatment Model for Complex Developmental Trauma

Forrest Lien, ACSW, LCSW, Institute for Attachment & Child, Colorado

8A—Theraplay®: A Therapeutic Intervention Using Attachment Based Play

Andrea Bushala, LCSW, The Theraplay Institute, Illinois

9A—Disenfranchised Grief in Adoption

Janet Nordine, MS, LMFT, RPT, Experience Courage Therapy and Consultation/Adoptees Connect, Nevada

 

Parenting in Adoption and Foster Care

1B—Parenting from the Trenches

Denise Goodman, PhD, trainer/consultant, Ohio

2B—On the Same Team: Relationship Resiliency in Difficult Times

Lori Ross & Randy Ross, FosterAdopt Connect, Missouri

3B—Dads Talk Adoption

Buddy Stevens, Vermont • Randy Ross, Missouri

4B—Quit Taking it Personal (QTIP)

Nyamekye Reynolds & Brezan Gowie, You Gotta Believe, New York

5B—I’m MAD Because You’re MAD (But How Do We Escape the “MADness”?)

Tanya Johnson-Gilchrist, Tiny Little Jewels/University of South Florida • Sharon Dues, AMI Kids, Florida • Khalilah L. Caines, LCSW, Saint Leo University, Florida

6B—Building Skills for Success: The Collaborative Problem-Solving Approach

Ed Morales, MPP, MSW, LICSW, Socorro Consulting, Minnesota

8B—Putting Concepts to Work: Practicing Therapeutic Parenting

Mary M. McGowan, ATTACh, Minnesota

9B—Ten Parenting Skills an Adoptee Wants Every Parent to Know

Jeanette Yoffe, MFT, Yoffe Therapy, California

 

Core Issues in Adoption

Self-care, building attachment, and identity formation are just a few of the central adoption-related issues addressed in NACAC’s 2019 conference. Join experts as they examine the journey and effects of adoption through various workshops for parents and professionals!

1C—The Emotional and Developmental Impact of Adoption

Jeffrey LaCure, PsyD, The New England Center for Adoption Support & Education, Massachusetts

2C—Ethical Issues in Adoption and Permanency

Allison Maxon, LMFT, National Center on Adoption and Permanency, California • Sharon Kaplan Roszia, MS, private practice, California

3C—Discovering Calm in the Midst of Chaos

Robyn Gobbel, LCSW, RPT-S, private practice, Texas

4C—Building Attachment-Focused Communities

Mary M. McGowan, ATTACh, Minnesota

5C—Laughter for the {Mental} Health of It: How to Ease the Stresses, Tensions, and Pains of Parenting and Everyday Life

Pat O’Brien, LMSW, LTMN, founder, You Gotta Believe!, New York

6C—Painting with Purpose: A Mind, Body, and Spirit Approach to Healing Trauma

Sue Badeau, child welfare speaker/consultant, Pennsylvania • Lisa D. Maynard, LMSW, RYT, Center for Adoption Support and Education, New York • Chelsea Chris, artist, Pennsylvania

7C—Self-care Isn’t Selfish

Jessica Sinarski, LPCMH, A Better Chance for our Children, Delaware

8C—Promising Practices in Adoption: Identity Formation and Search and Reunion

Tara Linh Leaman, JD, Westchester County Department of Social Services, New York • Trista Goldberg, Operation Reunite, New Jersey

 

Parenting Children with Challenges

Discover new and effective ways you can address various parenting issues, including navigating behavioral issues, race and culture, birth family connections, trauma, fetal alcohol spectrum disorders, ADHD, adolescence, talking about tough stuff, and so much more.

2D—Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder from a Trauma Lens

Barb Clark, North American Council on Adoptable Children, Minnesota

3D—Is It Just ADHD?

Elaine Schulte, MD, Children’s Hospital at Montefiore, New York

4D—From Adoption to Residential Treatment: Adoptive Families’ Experiences in the U.S. and Canada

Kim Brown, MA, Capital Adoptive Families Alliance, California • Rowena Fong, PhD, University of Texas at Austin • Catherine LaBrenz, University of Texas at Austin

5D—Executive Function: The Missing Diagnosis

John Sobraske, adoption psychotherapist, New York

6D—Attachment and FASD (and Other Neurodevelopmental Differences)

Janice Goldwater, Adoptions Together, Maryland

7D—Brains, Behavior, and Regulation

Denise C. Rice, LCSW, LAC, HOPEful Healing Training and Consulting, Colorado

9D—Emotional Regulatory Healing

Jules Alvarado, MA, LPC, Alvarado Consulting and Treatment Group, Colorado • Liz Clark, MA, LPC, Colorado

 

Recruiting Families

Explore strategies that can help you address challenges in the recruitment and retention of foster and adoptive families! These workshops highlight successful recruitment models, tips for enhanced recruitment efforts, recruiting in the digital age, and more!

1E—Making the Most of Your Recruitment Efforts: Effective Response System Strategies

Tracy Serdjenian, LMSW, AdoptUSKids, Colorado • Alicia Groh, MPP, AdoptUSKids, Minnesota

2E—Recruiting Foster Parents: The FosterMore Model

Mark Daley, Daley Solutions, California

3E—The Biggest Challenges in Recruitment and Retention of Foster and Adoptive Families

Carolyn Ashworth, Creating a Family, North Carolina

5E—It’s All About the Presentation

Michael Sanders, MSW, LISW, Michael Sanders Enterprises, Georgia

6E—Recruiting Families for Waiting Youth in the Digital Age

Kathy Clark, MSW, & Hayley Wiesman, LSW, Children’s Home and Lutheran Social Service, Minnesota

8E—Beyond Recruitment: Streamlining the Approval Process

Denise Goodman, PhD, trainer/consultant, Ohio

 

Success in Permanency

2F—The Simple Truths about Permanency Are Anything but Simple

Karen Moore, Open Doors for Lanark Children and Youth, Ontario

3F—Collaborating with Kinship Caregivers as a Permanency Option

Jeanette Willis, Sheri Abbey, MSW, & Lois Miller, Advantage Adoptions–OCOC, Texas

8F—Making a Trauma-Informed Decision Based on Readiness for Relationship Permanency

Darla L. Henry, PhD, MSW, Darla L. Henry and Associates, Pennsylvania

9F—Adoption and Other Options for Teens

Barry Chaffkin, Fostering Change for Children, New York

 

Preparing and Supporting Families

Learn more about model programs, strategies, practices, and policies that can help your team support adoptive and foster parents on every stage of their parenting journey from the approval process to post-adoption support groups.

1G—Parent Groups and Other Peer Support: Crucial to Success

Barb Clark, North American Council on Adoptable Children, Minnesota

3G—Adoption Readiness Practice

Jack Brennan & Joanne Ferrante, Family Focus Adoption Services, New York

4G—Meeting Families’ Needs: Assessing Family Support Services

Britt Cloudsdale, MSW, AdoptUSKids, North Carolina • Alicia Groh, MPP, AdoptUSKids, Minnesota

5G—Assessing and Building Parents’ Knowledge of Child Trauma

Justin “Jay” Miller, PhD, & Melissa Segress, University of Kentucky

6G—CORE: Teen Training Curriculum

Kim Stevens, North American Council on Adoptable Children, Vermont • Angelique Day, PhD, MSW, University of Washington School of Social Work, Missouri

7G—Adoption Assistance for Special Needs Adoptions

Josh Kroll, North American Council on Adoptable Children, Minnesota

9G—Foster Care to Adoption: Eliminating the “Drift” and Saving Adoptions

Maris H. Blechner, MEd, LCSW, Maris Blechner Consulting, New York

 

Agency Management and Systems

2H—Agile Scrum: Improving Systems and Outcomes

Ruben Ferreira, PhD, Massachusetts Department of Children & Families

4H—What Foster and Adoptive Parents Want Their Agency to Know (But Seldom Tell Them)

Dawn Davenport, Creating a Family, North Carolina

5H—Training Adoption and Family Resource Workers

Sharon Silvia, MSW & Etta Lappen Davis, Massachusetts Department of Children & Families

6H—It’s Time to Name the Big Adoption Enemy: Consumer Mentality

Maris H. Blechner, MEd, LCSW, Maris Blechner Consulting, New York

 

Advocacy and Public Policy

Flex your advocacy muscles by learning more about how to promote policies and practices that support youth and adoptive families! These workshops focus on helping you enhance your advocacy efforts, so that children and youth can get the support they need at school and in the world around them!

1I—Developmental Trauma Action Alliance

Kathy Soden & Sylvia Gibbons, Adoption Council of Ontario

2I—Promoting Systems Change to Prepare and Support Adoptive and Guardian Families

Leslie Cohen, Spaulding for Children, Ohio • Christine Feldman, Illinois SIM QIC-AG • Nicole Coning, Harmony Family Center, Tennessee

4I—Speak Up and Be Heard! Legislative Advocacy for Children, Youth, and Families

Joe Kroll, Voice for Adoption, Minnesota

7I—Advocating for Your Child at School: Trauma-Informed Strategies That Work

Julie Beem, MBA, Attachment & Trauma Network, Georgia

 

Race, Culture, and Diversity in Adoption

1J—Tangled: Hair, Race, and Identity

Naijean Bernard, PhD & Easter Spates, LPC, Envolve Health, Texas

2J—Unconditional Family for LGBTQ+ Youth in Foster Care

Bryan Hill, LMSW, Fostering Change for Children, New York

3J—Reclaiming Indigenous Culture for Children

Kim Grzybowski, British Columbia

4J—The Multicultural Family Grows Up in the New America

Lynn Gabbard, National Center on Adoption and Permanency, Connecticut • Susan Myers, Connecticut Council on Adoption • Jesse Gabbard, adopted person, California

5J—The Urgency of Seeing Color in Adoption and Foster Care

April Dinwoodie, Adoptment, New York

6J—Building Organizational Capacity for LGBTQ Inclusive Practice

Jean-Phillipe Regis, Human Rights Campaign, District of Columbia

7J—LGBT Parents and Our Children

John Ireland, RaiseAChild, California

8J—The Impact of Worker and Caregiver Bias on Children’s Identity Formation

Susan Harris O’Connor, MSW, author/national performance artist/transracial adoptee • Ruth G. McRoy, PhD, Boston College, Massachusetts • Kim Stevens, North American Council on Adoptable Children, Vermont

9J—Helping White Families Consider, Understand, and Prepare for Transracial Adoption

Katie Wynen, MSW, Pact, An Adoption Alliance, California

 

Older Children and Youth

1K—Rethinking Permanence for Older Youth

Brandi Hill, MSW, LCSW, & Abigail Hill, Esq, Maryland Judiciary, Administrative Office of the Courts, Department of Juvenile & Family Services

3K—Beneath the Mask: Adoption Through the Eyes of Adolescents

Debbie Riley, LCMFT, Center for Adoption Support and Education, Maryland

4K—Factors That Help Youth Thrive

Sarah B. Greenblatt, LMSW, SBGreeenblatt Consulting, LLC, Connecticut

5K—Youth Voices Matter

Mercedes Zahler, North American Council on Adoptable Children, Minnesota • young adult panel

6K—Unpacking the “No” to Adoption

Michael Sanders, MSW, LISW, Michael Sanders Enterprises, Georgia

7K—Improving Communication and Relationship with Teens

Thomas C. Rector, Accrescent Institute, California

8K—Developing and Implementing a Youth Mentoring Program

Kecia Sakazaki & April Johnson, Aging Up, California

 

Supporting Children

1L—Too Many Losses Too Soon: Loss and Grief in Children Who Are Adopted or in Foster Care

Mari Itzkowitz, LCSW, Center for Adoption Support and Education, Virginia

2L—Sensory Processing: Living Life Through a Different Filter

Heather Saak, FosterAdopt Connect, Missouri

3L—Delivering Mental Health Services to a Rural Community

Jessica Hubbard & Meagan Albert, LCSWA, Chatham County Department of Social Services, North Carolina

5L—Prevention of Sexual Exploitation and Trafficking in Child Welfare

Stefania Agliano, LMSW & Bryan Hall, LCSW, I AM Training and Consultation Group LLC, Connecticut

7L—Thriving! Moving Beyond Trauma-Informed to Nurturing Resilience

Sue Badeau, child welfare speaker/consultant, Pennsylvania

8L—Talking to Kids about Tough Stuff

Barry Chaffkin, Fostering Change for Children, New York

9L—Who’s Talking to Your Child? What You Need to Know about Internet Safety

Paula Lupton & Kim Purinton, Centene, Florida

 

Birth Family and Openness

1M—Helping Adopted Youth Maintain Connections with Birth Family and Communities

Pat Convery, RSW, Adoption Council of Ontario

2M—The Inclusive Family Support Model: Facilitating Openness for All Adoptive Families

Angela Tucker, Amara/founder of The Adopted Life, Washington

4M—Supporting Kinship Care

Anntesha Chesterton, Alison Caliendo, & Nani Garrett, Foster Kinship, Nevada

6M—Facilitating Co-Parenting Through Visitation Practice

Stacey Lance & Jesse Brown, Washoe County Human Services Agency, Nevada

9M—Openness and Technology

Sarah Reid & Taryn Danford, Adoptive Families Association of British Columbia

Our Mission

The North American Council on Adoptable Children (NACAC) supports, educates, inspires, and advocates so adoptive families thrive and every child in foster care has a permanent, safe, loving family.

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