Day 1

Morning

2018 Conference

 
 

 
 

Morning Keynote
( 75 minutes )

The Circle of Courage

————Dr. Martin Brokenleg


For thousands of years, North American Indigenous cultures nourished respectful and courageous children without employing punitive discipline.  Now, recent youth development research is revealing the essential elements in raising confident, caring children.  Drawing on his research with Drs. Larry Brendtro and Steve Van Bockern in their book, Reclaiming Youth at Risk, Dr. Martin Brokenleg presents the Circle of Courage which offers concrete strategies for creating environments in which all young people can grow and flourish.

Biography:

Dr. Martin Brokenleg is co-author of the book Reclaiming Youth at Risk:  Our Hope for the Future and co-developer of the Circle of Courage model and provides training worldwide for individuals who work with youth at risk.  He holds a doctorate in psychology and is a graduate of the Anglican Divinity School.  He is a retired professor and was most recently Director of Native Ministries and Professor of First Nations Theology at the Vancouver School of Theology.  For thirty years, Dr. Brokenleg was Professor of Native American studies at Augustana University of Sioux Falls, South Dakota.  He has also been a director of The Neighborhood Youth Corps, chaplain in a correctional setting, and has extensive experience as an alcohol counselor.  Dr. Brokenleg has consulted and led training programs throughout North America, New Zealand, Europe, Australia, and South Africa.  He is the father of three children and an enrolled member of the Rosebud Sioux Tribe.

 
 
 

 
 

Session 1
( 60 minutes )

Intergenerational Trauma

————Dr. Martin Brokenleg


Some populations display complex social patterns that are the result of history. Indigenous youth display intergenerational trauma but usually receive symptom treatment. The Circle of Courage  transforms the foundation conditions for Indigenous or any other youth.
 

Biography:

Dr. Martin Brokenleg is co-author of the book Reclaiming Youth at Risk:  Our Hope for the Future and co-developer of the Circle of Courage model and provides training worldwide for individuals who work with youth at risk.  He holds a doctorate in psychology and is a graduate of the Anglican Divinity School.  He is a retired professor and was most recently Director of Native Ministries and Professor of First Nations Theology at the Vancouver School of Theology.  For thirty years, Dr. Brokenleg was Professor of Native American studies at Augustana University of Sioux Falls, South Dakota.  He has also been a director of The Neighborhood Youth Corps, chaplain in a correctional setting, and has extensive experience as an alcohol counselor.  Dr. Brokenleg has consulted and led training programs throughout North America, New Zealand, Europe, Australia, and South Africa.  He is the father of three children and an enrolled member of the Rosebud Sioux Tribe.

 
 
 

 
 

Session 2
( 60 minute )

Comprehensive School Health: Engaging Partners and Strategies to support Youth

————Jillian Marino


Schools can offer more than a welcoming, safe, and inclusive environment for high risk youth. They can often be the only safe place to build positive and trusting relationships with role models and healthy adults. John D. Bracco has engaged a number of community partners programs and practices to support the diverse community served in Northeast Edmonton. Partnerships include The Family Centre, SACE, EISA, EMCN, REACH Edmonton, BBGC & BBBS Clubs, City of Edmonton Recreation, Edmonton Public Library, Alberta Health Services, Abundant Communities Edmonton, Hairsine Community League, Bannerman Community League, Bethel Church, Child & Family Services Northeast, Clareview Recreation Centre, Boyle Street Community League, C5 Edmonton, E4C, Elizabeth Fry Society. Programs include: Community Helpers, Be Your Own Man, Girls Empowered Program, Student Leadership Classes, Bruins  Soccer Institute, Discovery Fitness Classes, Rhythm to Recovery Drumming Groups,  Have Courage & Be Kind Weekly Student Recognition (6 Pillars of JDB),  Mental Health & Wellness Student Conference.


Practices:

Restorative Justice Practices, Success in Schools Meetings, Positive Organization Principles

Biography:

Jillian Marino is in her fifth year as Principal at John. D. Bracco Junior High School. She has served as an Assistant Principal at Queen Elizabeth, J. Percy Page, Jasper Place, and Eastglen High Schools. Having faced personal challenges involving trauma, her compassion for youth drives her to ensure their needs are addressed. She is also a wife, a daughter, an aunt and a mother of two children aged 7 and 9.

 
 
 

 
 

Session 3
( 60 minute )

Creating a Policies and Practice Framework for Banning Youth

————Karen Drynan, Shawn Johnston, and Rhea Bowman


In this presentation the Action Alliance for Youth Inclusion (AAYI) will 1) share results from a study exploring the impact of being banned on youth, 2) share a framework for banning policy and practice, and 3) invite audience feedback. Youth in high-risk situations have few places they are welcome to spend time, and being banned from places such as stores and services can make it more difficult for youth to meet their needs. 39 Edmonton-area youth shared their experiences of being banned through community mapping and individual interviews, and 15 service providers shared their perspectives. Attendees will hear youth and service provider recommendations for policy and practice, and review a framework developed by AAYI in consultation with youth for practice and policy for banning. Attendees will be better informed to support youth, and advocate for and with youth who receive bans.
 

Biography:

Action Alliance for Youth Inclusion (AAYI) is a collaboration of youth-serving agencies and community partners working as allies for youth in high-risk situations. Through community-based participatory research, identifying emerging trends, and advocacy, we influence policy and take action to advance the social inclusion of youth.

Karen Drynan: Karen has worked with the high risk youth population for 16 years. A member of the AAYI (formerly OSCMAP) collaboration since 2009.

Shawn Johnston: I am a Registered Social Worker with the ACSW and have a BSW from University of Calgary. My previous positions have ranged from an Adventure Based Counselor in an Adventure Based Counselling Group Home, to a Human Rights Officer with the Alberta Human Rights Commission to a High Risk Youth Social Worker with Kids in the Hall before becoming a Community Building Social Worker with the City of Edmonton.

 
 
 

 
 

Session 4
( 60 minute )

Building Professional Capacity around Youth Addictions

————Jennie McLester and Michelle Chaffey


The purpose of our session would be to build capacity for professionals to better understand addiction, talk about it with their youth, decrease stigma, and ultimately increase youth engagement. We will explore supporting youth in self- evaluation regarding their choices, understanding their motivations to use and ultimately navigate supportive services available in the province. We will provide from a front line perspective what the clients will go through when entering treatment and how we can work together as a community to support their recovery journey.
 

Biography:

Jennie McLester: I have been working with Youth Addiction Services for the past 14 years. In recent years I have been overseeing a Mental Health Collaborative Program in Southwest Edmonton called Connects as well as providing mobile addiction support for Leduc and coordinating the intakes with Youth Intensive Day Treatment.

Michelle Chaffey: Michelle has been with Youth Addiction Services for over 15 years. She is currently the supervisor of the Youth Residential Treatment Program. She has navigated all areas of treatment from in patient, to collaborating with Mental Health Collaborative projects such as Connects and the Way In. She has also worked in the community as a mobile counsellor as well as the Intensive Day Treatment program. Throughout all her years of service Michelle is unshakable in her belief around being client focused, strength based and the youth see her as an advocate through very difficult times in their lives.

 
 
 

 
 

Session 5
( 60 minute )

What is Mental Health First Aid?

————Jenan Nasserdeen and Dolores Patterson (Catalyst Training Services)


Would you know what to do if someone was having a panic attack? Mental Health First Aid is the help provided to a person developing a mental health problem or experiencing a mental health crisis. This interactive presentation will give an overview of the principals of MHFA, and explore the impact of stigma and other barriers on a young person’s ability to access support.  This presentation comes alive through the use of video, audio clips, collaborative group work and facilitated discussion.  


Biography:

Jenan Nasserdeen: With 20 years of continuous service in the private and public sector, Jenan has extensive experience supporting Edmonton's most valuable population. Understanding the need for effective mental health supports in our community, Jenan empowers individuals with the principles of Mental Health First Aid and prepares them to be confident first responders.

Dolores Patterson: Incorporating over twenty years’ experience working with youth and families, Dolores is a passionate advocate for inclusion, community development and mental health awareness. An enthusiastic presenter, she has facilitated Mental Health First Aid throughout Alberta with diverse individuals and teams who are striving to empower and promote wellness for youth.

 
 
 

 
 

Session 6
( 60 minute )

Empower Youth: How inserting brief therapy into the continuum of mental health services is helping to improve outcomes for young people

————Kimberly A. Knull, Katherine Hay, and Margo Long


Accessing mental health programs for youth in a timely, seamless manner has been a challenge in our city. Single session, solution focused therapy has been shown to be just as, if not more, effective than traditional forms of therapy. This presentation will review the Canadian research on the effectiveness of brief mental health services for children and youth. The results of Momentum Walk-In Counselling’s Project Impact will be discussed, and links will be made between the two studies. How brief therapy fits into the mental health continuum will be reviewed, and its benefits and drawbacks will be explored. Local collaborations between community and government organizations will be highlighted, which have been improving mental health outcomes for youth. 


Biography:

Kimberly A. Knull: Kimberly is a Registered Psychologist and Child and Adolescent therapist. She was a parenting columnist on CBC Radio for 3 years. Her organization, Momentum, helps hundreds of youth each year access low barrier, strengths based, solution focused counselling interventions. 

Katherine Hay: Katherine is the program director of AHS Young Adult Services in the Edmonton Zone. She has provided leadership and administrative oversight for three addiction and mental health clinical services currently offered to young adults in the Edmonton Zone of AHS (i.e., EEPIC, YAETRS, and YACLS). 

Margo Long: Margo is the Executive Director of YESS and a director on the board of the Mental Health Foundation. She has sound knowledge of current events and political party platforms especially regarding child and adolescent mental health. 

 
 
 

 
 

Session 7
( 60 minute )

Reforming the Family Justice System - Helping Families Thrive

————Diana Lowe, QC


Reforming the Family Justice System - Helping Families Thrive The Reforming the Family Justice System (RFJS) initiative is a collaborative effort that began with a shared belief that Alberta’s family justice system is in crisis. We have adopted scientific evidence on brain development as foundational for our work. This brain science reveals that the toxic stress of unresolved family disputes has negative consequences for parents and their children. Legal responses to what are really social, relationship and financial problems, can do more harm than good for families. We are re-imagining the family justice system to better address the needs of families. We’ve adopted a “Theory of Change” that recognizes that family justice issues are primarily social, relationship and financial, that contain a legal element. This in-turn means that our first priority is to empower well-rounded solutions that support families as they restructure, and most importantly, to ensure that children are safe and thriving even as their families are changing.


Biography:

Diana is the Executive Counsel to the Chief Justice of the Court of Queen’s Bench. She has extensive experience in systems reform, and is co-leading the Reforming the Family Justice System (RFJS) which is collaboration designed to effect system-wide change in the family justice system in Alberta.

 

Day 1

Afternoon

 
 

 
 

Afternoon Keynote
( 60 minutes )

Youth Panel Keynote


————Youth Panel


 
 
 

 
 

Session 8
( 90 minutes )

Celebrating and Supporting Diversity: What YOU can do to Reduce Risk Factors and Increase Protective Factors for LGBTQ Youth

————David Rust


“Celebrating and Supporting Diversity: What YOU can do to Reduce Risk Factors and Increase Protective Factors for LGBTQ Youth” is a presentation and discussion that provides opportunities for young people to receive and benefit from the understanding, relationships, supports and services that are needed for their healthy emotional and social development. Through an exploration of current North American research, evidence-based practice, known risk and protective factors, and cultural history, participants will build awareness, knowledge, skills, and general capacity in order to support sexual minority children and youth’s personal, health, mental health, behavioral and social-emotional outcomes. Participants will explore why and how to support the sexual minority (LGBTQ) students in the community, whether or not they have self-identified. It has been estimated that up to 10% of the population in all communities and cultures are gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender, or two-spirited - with noted higher rates in populations including youth in care of the government, and much higher rates again for homeless youth (research indicates 35% to 52% are LGBTQ). In order to reduce their inherent mental health and social risk factors, information and discussion will be provided regarding related issues such as:

  • developing healthy relationships

  • school engagement and completion

  • bullying

  • physical violence and sexual assault

  • addiction and mental health

  • suicidal ideation

  • sexual health

  • family and social dynamics

There will be a focus on strategies to increase young people’s resilience, protective factors, and positive personal and school outcomes, as well as how to help create a culture of acceptance, support and inclusion that benefits the family and community. 

This session is appropriate for, and sensitive to, a diverse group of social workers, educators, foster parents and other child and youth stakeholders of all backgrounds (youth serving agency staff, youth workers, teachers, coaches, mentors, respite care-givers and others). It will provide opportunities to explore supporting individual diversity among children and youth within varied cultural and community contexts.  By highlighting timely legislation and advances in quality youth engagement and support, recognizing the value of the community of supports surrounding youth in care, collaborative partnerships, and by becoming familiar with current significant research from EGALE and others, child and youth resiliency and protective factor development can be realized as an essential part of building a healthy relationship, family of choice, and community. Components of youth voice and art will be utilized to demonstrate and experience young people as full stakeholders in the development of the creation of safe and caring family and community environments. Understanding who the stakeholders are and learning how to engage, inform, motivate, activate, evaluate and celebrate progress towards making service providers and communities safe and responsive to diversity of all kinds is the ultimate outcome goal, fitting well with A4YC’s mission to create a network of professionals for information sharing, capacity building, skill development, and ultimately improved outcomes for youth in care.  
 

Biography:

David is a community consultant and the Lead of the Mental Health Community Action Plan for the Mental Health Continuum Project, and contributor to the City of Edmonton Suicide Prevention Strategy. He has over 30 years of experience in community development, professional and public education, and personal development and mental health and addiction treatment programming for UNICEF, Junior Achievement, and Human Services. Clinical Supervisor for AADAC’s Mobile Services Unit, Provincial Team Lead for Alberta Health Services Mental Health Capacity Building Initiative, and Director of Community Partnerships, The Society for Safe and Caring Schools & Communities. Served as Chair of the Edmonton Inter-Agency Services Association for many years and has also worked in the areas of prevention of sexual exploitation of children and youth, suicide prevention, sexual minority youth, family reunification, and supports for multi-cultural and Aboriginal children and families. Invited to serve on the Council on Alberta Teaching Standards, the Alberta Social Policy Development Initiative Committee, the Alberta Think Tanks on Youth Engagement, and has received such recognition as the Canadian School Mental Health Award, Alberta School Council’s Association Excellence in Learning Partnerships Award, and the Man of Honour Award for community service and collaborative practices. 

 
 
 

 
 

Session 9
( 90 minute )

Rites of Passage: Creating Liminal Space where the light can enter

————Jenny Fennessy, MBPS


Community psychology studies the individual and their relationship to society. Seeking to understand how to improve quality of life of through collaborative research and action. This session will explore what knowledge and skills (linked to the themes of the conference) can be taught and processed by integrating community psychology, expressive arts and nature-based activity. Exploring their value in promoting and addressing mental health and well-being. We will explore such methodologies as ‘empowerment walk’ & ‘threshold walk’ as an opportunity to engage creatively in a process of self-reflection. These activities combine elements of nature connection for personal and spiritual development. The main spiritual concept presented in this workshop draws from ‘The Medicine Wheel’ that originates from Native American traditions for health and healing. The overall goal of the workshop is to appreciate the strengths of community psychology and nature connection as strategies and methodologies in the design of effective services for children and families experiencing adversity among other issues related to social justice, equality, immigration and human rights.
 

Biography:

Jenny has worked with young people presenting with complex needs in a variety of community-based settings. She integrates a multidisciplinary approach in her work integrating elements of community psychology, youth work, expressive arts and outdoor education to empower young people to achieve their personal potential.

 
 
 

 
 

Session 10
( 90 minute )

Workplace Well-Being: Mindfulness Practices to Care For You

————Larisa Jeffares and Nicole Wiens


A 90-minute workshop helping educators, health-care providers, first responders and human services workers, to care for themselves, prevent and understand burnout, compassion fatigue and vicarious trauma using a variety of mindfulness practices and connection to nature. Participants in the workshop will be provided with current, evidence based research around the topics of trauma and the brain, relational practice framework, compassion fatigue, vicarious trauma and mindfulness. They will engage with these topics through discussion, questions and hands on exercises. Participants will leave with a better understanding of how caring for themselves and learning to engage mindfully with others both professionally and personally leads to compassionate action and stronger relationships.
 

Biography:

Larisa Jeffares: Larisa holds her Bachelor of Arts degree from MacEwan University in Child and Youth Care Counselling, her diploma in Child and Youth Care from MacEwan University, her instructional certificate in teaching adults to meditate, Lifestyle Meditation and her Level 2 Reiki Certificate. Larisa has extensive experience working with children, youth and families. Professionally, she has worked for seventeen years with at risk youth and their families in various capacities. She has been a child and family services case worker with Inner City Connections (ICC) and the High Risk Youth Unit (HRYU). Larisa has also been an assessor for Protection for Sexually Exploited Youth and for Northern Alberta Child Intervention Services. She has worked in Boyle Street Community Services as an adult outreach worker. She is a steering-committee-member for the Allies (4) Youth Conference. Most recently, she has created a mindfulness coaching company called Wolf Willow Well-being. Wolf Willow Well-being supports people who have experienced any form of trauma using a variety of mindfulness practices, Reiki and nature as a classroom. 

Nicole Wiens: Nicole has a Bachelor of Arts degree from Concordia University College of Alberta and a Bachelor of Education degree from University of Alberta. Nicole understands the importance of mindfulness both as a personal practice and as a teaching tool, and incorporates these practices into her classroom and work with individual client. Her personal goal is: “To live life fully and help others do the same in any way that I can”.

 
 
 

 
 

Session 11
( 90 minute )

Transitioning out of care: Sailing to New Horizons

————Deb Bildfell and Avril Frost


Just like sailing the seas transitioning from one life stage to the next can be challenging and scary, but if done in a timely matter with support you can hit smooth seas and enjoy the journey. In this presentation we will discuss what is transitioning from care and why is it important to start this process early, How do we prepare for transition and what supports are available throughout the Government and community. Young adults who turn 18 and are involved with Children’s Services have a decision to make at age 18; one is to leave that support and enter into their own interdependent life or secondly they can enter into a voluntary contract with Children’s Services called a Support and Financial Agreement and together with a case worker create a plan to help that young adult enhance the skills they already have and learn new skills in order to reach the goals they have set. Support and Financial Agreements can continue till the youth is age 24 and is reviewed frequently. “The role of the Integrated Transition Specialist is to help Caseworkers problem solve complex transition matters and to support Albertans who may be falling through the gaps of government services, no matter what age they are. Deb and Avril believe everyone is an expert on their own life and offer positive, vision focused supports”.
 

Biography:

Deb Bildfell: Deb is a registered social worker and has been working as a Caseworker for
Child and Family Services for 19 years. Deb’s passion has always been to serve youth who have experienced significant trauma and feel disconnected from healthy support. Deb is currently working as an Integrated Transition Specialist, along with Avril Frost.

Avril Frost: Avril is a registered social worker and has been working as a Caseworker for both Justice and Child and Family Services for 35 years. Avril has extensive knowledge when working with Albertan’s who have and needing AISH and Persons with Developmental Disabilities supports. Avril is currently working as an Integrated Transition Specialist, along with Deb Bildfell.

 
 
 

 
 

Session 12
( 90 minute )

Restorative Practices in Schools - Engaging and Re-engaging Students Through Relationships

————Caroline Gosling (Missal) and Joy Malloch


“People don’t care how much you know until they know how much you care” - Theodore Roosevelt. Relationships are at the centre of restorative practices which, when implemented by schools, increase student engagement in school and decrease inappropriate behaviour which typically results in suspensions. This session will begin to explore implementing restorative practices in your schools and how they can support other initiatives such as social emotional literacy, mental health, trauma informed practices and high school completion. Restorative practices in schools focus on doing things with students, not to or for students. Alberta Education’s Office of Student Attendance and Re-engagement has recently started using a restorative approach to support students in accessing learning. Research, results, and resources will be shared.   


Biography:

Caroline is an educator with 30+ years of experience as a teacher, consultant and principal. She is currently seconded part time to Alberta Education supporting mentoring in schools and the Office of Student Attendance and Re-engagement. Caroline holds a Masters degree in Educational Leadership. For the past 20 years, Caroline has done extensive work in the field of restorative justice, restorative practices in schools, and creating positive school culture for students and adults. She is a trained Community Conferencing facilitator and a trainer of facilitators. 

 
 
 

 
 

Session 13
( 60 minute )

Youth strengths arise from the ashes of adversity: What did youth tell us they need from service providers and how can we practice from a strengths-based approach?

————Candace Lind, Brenda Juby, and Christine Walsh


Studying protective factors as opposed to risk factors has been described as more powerful in predicting future adult outcomes for youth living with risk, and provides a strengths-based route to a more fulfilling life. Achieving the goal of healthier outcomes may be advanced by carrying out research that studies "at-risk" youths' capabilities, includes youths' voices and builds upon their strengths. We will start our session by presenting the results of our research project that explored the resilience, healthy capabilities and strengths stories of youth in challenging circumstances. We completed interviews with youth and staff across three community-based organizations that work with youth living with homelessness, conflict with the law, or receiving mental health focused treatment services. We will then share critically important aspects of effective staff relationships from the youths' perspectives, and facilitate hands-on learning of how to translate these recommendations into practice and policy, using a strengths-based approach.
 

Biography:

Candace Lind: Candace’s research focuses on youth health promotion, encompassing strategies that are relationship and strengths-based, focus on youth voice, and address the ways in which youth are conceptualized in society - to assist practice and policy development. Her work is informed by social justice and the social determinants of health.

Brenda Juby: Brenda is a Nursing Instructor with an extensive background working with “at risk” youth in schools, communities and youth-serving organizations; from a strengths-based perspective. She teaches undergraduate community health nursing and delivers workshops to educators on effective strategies to infuse a strengths approach into their clinical teaching.

Christine Walsh: Christine, Associate Dean, Research and Partnerships conducts community-based, arts-inspired and action oriented research to improve the lives of vulnerable populations including people experiencing poverty and homelessness, Indigenous Peoples and youth and adults involved in the criminal justice system.

 
 
 

 

Session 14
( 60 minute )

Vermilion Outreach School: Moving from Trauma Ignorant to Informed

————Derek Collins


Vermilion Outreach School staff has been on a professional development journey. Frustration and stress were high as we reacted to various behaviours in school including defiance, substance abuse and truancy. Our work with students who had not been successful in traditional settings incorporated a set of policies and ideas gained from trial and error. We knew we had to learn more about connecting with youth and building relationships. We learned about stress, trauma and attachment and formalized our policies and activities to plan how to support the various students who come to our building. We have also come to understand the importance of caring for ourselves throughout this process. The presentation will share our strategies, experiences, and the direction we are heading as we strive to Engage for Success. 
 

Biography:

Derek has been an educator for over twenty years, the last 9 years as principle of Vermilion Outreach School. His Masters in Ed. Psych focused on engaging youth. He is a registered counsellor and coordinator of the local food bank. 

 
 
 

 
 

Session 15
( 60 minute )

Complex trauma and Diagnosis: What it is and what it isn’t

————Dr. Koreen Martfeld, Ph.D. in psychology, M. Counselling., B.A., B.Ed.


Youth who have experienced many adverse childhood experiences (i.e. trauma/abuse) often collect psychological diagnoses like a boy scout collects badges. This presentation will examine why this occurs, the role of the DSM 5, what it actually means, and how diagnoses can inform or misinform attempts to treat and intervene. Participants will also work with a case study to develop a trauma informed perspective on the youth, identify the youth’s needs, and choose strategies to support the youth and build healthy relationships.
 

Biography:

Koreen has worked with youth for more than twenty-five years as a registered psychologist, and school and university instructor. Koreen works as a psychologist for Yellowhead Youth Center, teaches at City University, and operates a private forensic psychology practice.

 
 
 

 
 

Session 16
( 60 minute )

Let’s Talk About You(th):Restoring Connection and Restoring Justice

————Youth Restorative Action Project: Landon Turlock, YRAP File Coordinator and Shaylyn Hunter, Program Coordinator


This session will discuss the unique way that peacemaking circles in a restorative justice setting can be used to connect youth with their communities and families while providing a framework for positive growth. This interactive session will introduce participants to the concept of peacemaking circles in the context of youth justice. Participants will have an opportunity to learn about the tenets of restorative justice and practice some of the skills used in peacemaking circles. This content will be framed in an understanding of how restorative justice strengthens connections between youth and their communities, both in terms of informal and formal supports.

 
 
 

 
 

Session 17
( 60 minute )

High Risk Youth Multidisciplinary Consultation Team

————Cst. Val Hoglund, Tennille Soderberg, and other Multidisciplinary Team members


Multidisciplinary teams, which are comprised of staff who vary in their educational and professional experiences, bring together diverse perspectives, expertise, and skills (Kozlowski and Ilgen, 2006). Our team consists of a variety of staff from the community and government organizations who bring a variety of knowledge and resources together to support youth in the community. Often the professionals and/or families who present their youth may be exhausted from the interventions they have previously attempted without success. Our team attempts to offer a number of recommendations that are not typically used in traditional practices and may be helpful to the youth and their supports moving forward. Here we will explore the use of harm reduction, strength based approaches that incorporate our understanding of trauma, attachment and brain development to guide us as we search for appropriate strategies. We will offer a description of the team and its benefits to supporting youth with complex needs. We would also present a mock consultation to clarify what the procedure looks like and how ideas are presented.


Biography:

Cst. Val Hoglund: Val has 27 years of service with the Edmonton Police Service and is currently assigned to the Youth Services Section. She has worked with high risk youth for the past five years. 

Tennille Soderberg: Tennille has a background in Child and Youth Care and has worked in a number of positions in the community supporting youth and families. Tennille has worked as a Youth Transition Advisor for the REE*START Program for the past five years supporting youth who typically have Children’s Services and/or justice status. 

 
 
 

 
 

Session 18
( 60 minute )

Building Capacity for Resilient Brains

————Jacqueline Dagneau and Jessica Karpa (The Family Centre)


We know that adverse childhood experiences, or trauma, damage the brain; executive functioning, and physical, mental and emotional health become negatively impacted (Felitti). Fortunately, we also know brains are resilient. Brains are designed to have the ability to bounce back (Neufeld). The key to rebuilding brains or accessing their resiliency is through relationship (Perry). We are essentially wired to connect and our job as youth serving providers is to connect and build resilient brains. We will walk you through the strategies we have used to significantly increase relationships and connectedness for youth to their identified communities. We will share the ways in which we explore effective approaches to reduce anxiety and alarm in our youth so that we may engage in intentional planning and opportunities to increase executive functioning. Finally, we will present on the tools we use to: assess, engage, evaluate and garner feedback.


Biography:

Jacqueline Dagneau: Jacqueline is a Registered Social Worker with a B. A. degree from Simon Fraser University and an MSc in Social Work from the University of Southampton in the U.K. she has been employed within the human services field for 18 years. Currently she is the Permanency Manager at The Family Centre.

Jessica Karpa: Jessica obtained her Bachelor of Child & Youth Care from MacEwan University in 2015. Shortly thereafter she began her career at The Family Centre. She is currently a Permanency Supervisor for Youth Intervention Specialists at The Family Centre. In her spare time, Jessica volunteers at Ronald McDonald House Charities.

 
 
 

 
 

Session 19
( 60 minute )

What’s so Important about Social Emotional Learning?

————Cheryl Shinkaruk and Tammy Woroschuk (Edmonton Catholic School District)


Social emotional learning skills are essential for positive mental health, working with others, building resiliency, communicating effectively, persevering to achieve goals and building healthy relationships. Edmonton Catholic Schools has developed a Mental Health Strategic Plan, which provides a continuum of supports for students from Kindergarten to Grade 12. Guided by the work of Dr. Kutcher, we will use interactive activities to incorporate how to mitigate high risk factors through SEL, giving the youth the skills to develop healthy relationships. Through a holistic approach, we will draw upon strategies that are being used to support students in our district. This universal approach for all students, which focuses on a strengths-based student-centred method empowers students to take ownership for their actions. We will highlight some of our resources and strategies that we are currently implementing within the schools, Go to Educator, Fourth R, Mental Health Curriculum Guide, PEERS and Student Leadership Symposiums.


Biography:

Cheryl Shinkaruk: Cheryl is the Manager: Programs & Projects with Edmonton Catholic Schools. She holds her Masters of Education, along with certification in Social Emotional Learning supports within the school setting. She has a passion for supporting students through a holistic approach.

Tammy Woroschuk: Tammy is a Registered Social Worker and Manager-Social Work for ECSD. Tammy has completed her graduate level practicum with Cheryl on the topic of social and emotional learning.

 

Day 2

Morning

 
 

 
 

Morning Keynote
( 75 minutes )

The Benefit of Trauma-Informed Residential Services

————Dr. Joseph Spinazzola


This keynote address will discuss the benefits of trauma-informed residential services from several perspectives and will provide a discourse on the transition from punishment-based outpatient to relationship-based services.
 

Biography:

Joseph is a trauma-specialty psychotherapist, trainer and consultant in private practice, was a clinician, researcher, clinical supervisor, and national trainer for the Trauma Center for over 18 years, including 12 as its Executive Director. Dr. Spinazzola is an Adjunct Professor at Richmont Graduate University, a member of the Forensic Panel, and Executive Director of the Foundation Trust. A recognized leader in the area of complex traumatic stress, Dr. Spinazzola founded the Complex Trauma Treatment Network of the National Child Traumatic Stress Network and  served as a co-author for both the International Society for Traumatic Stress Studies’ expert guidelines for the treatment of Complex PTSD as well as the forthcoming joint guidelines for the treatment of Complex PTSD from Division 56 (Trauma) of the American Psychological Association and the International Society for the Study of Trauma and Dissociation. Dr. Spinazzola also served as Co-Principal Investigator of the Developmental Trauma Disorder National Field Trials. He has published over 60 peer-reviewed journal articles and book chapters on the diagnosis, assessment and treatment of complex trauma in children and adults. Dr. Spinazzola is a lead national trainer in the ARC model as well as the lead developer of Trauma Drama, an intervention utilizing improvisational theater, cooperative play and transformative action to reset developmental trajectories for youth and young adults impacted by maltreatment, neglect, exploitation, discrimination and other forms of life adversity. He is the co-author of the forthcoming book, Reaching Across the Abyss: Treating Adult Survivors of Childhood Emotional Abuse and Neglect scheduled to be released in summer 2018 through The Guilford Press.

 
 
 

 
 

Session 20
( 60 minutes )

Developmental Trauma Disorder

————Dr. Joseph Spinazzola


Biography:
Joseph is a trauma-specialty psychotherapist, trainer and consultant in private practice, was a clinician, researcher, clinical supervisor, and national trainer for the Trauma Center for over 18 years, including 12 as its Executive Director. Dr. Spinazzola is an Adjunct Professor at Richmont Graduate University, a member of the Forensic Panel, and Executive Director of the Foundation Trust. A recognized leader in the area of complex traumatic stress, Dr. Spinazzola founded the Complex Trauma Treatment Network of the National Child Traumatic Stress Network and  served as a co-author for both the International Society for Traumatic Stress Studies’ expert guidelines for the treatment of Complex PTSD as well as the forthcoming joint guidelines for the treatment of Complex PTSD from Division 56 (Trauma) of the American Psychological Association and the International Society for the Study of Trauma and Dissociation. Dr. Spinazzola also served as Co-Principal Investigator of the Developmental Trauma Disorder National Field Trials. He has published over 60 peer-reviewed journal articles and book chapters on the diagnosis, assessment and treatment of complex trauma in children and adults. Dr. Spinazzola is a lead national trainer in the ARC model as well as the lead developer of Trauma Drama, an intervention utilizing improvisational theater, cooperative play and transformative action to reset developmental trajectories for youth and young adults impacted by maltreatment, neglect, exploitation, discrimination and other forms of life adversity. He is the co-author of the forthcoming book, Reaching Across the Abyss: Treating Adult Survivors of Childhood Emotional Abuse and Neglect scheduled to be released in summer 2018 through The Guilford Press.

 
 
 

 
 

Session 21
( 60 minute )

Dance Therapy

————Stephen “Buddha” Leafloor


Buddha, along with a few members of Blueprint for Life, will teach dance and break down some concepts such as cognitive therapy in a dance circle.
 

Biography:

Blue Print For Life and Blueprint Pathways founder and Executive Director, Stephen Leafloor, has a Masters in Social Work (MSW degree) and over 30 years’ experience in areas such as probation, wilderness programs, street work with at-risk youth, residential group homes, child protection and community outreach. Stephen has also been a keynote speaker at many national and international conferences on social work and how to engage youth. Ashoka, one of the world’s most prestigious organizations for international outreach, appointed Stephen an Ashoka Fellow for Canada. He has also been made a Making More Health Fellow for an international working group on health issues. In 2011, Governor General, Michaëlle Jean, presented Stephen with an award for his outreach service, and in 2016 he received the Meritorious Service Cross from Governor General, David Johnston. Zoomer Magazine named Stephen one of Canada’s Top “45 Over 45” in 2012. In addition to his community work, Stephen continues to be an active participant in Hip Hop culture as a dancer. He has performed for James Brown, rapper Ice-T, Grandmaster Flash, Black Eyed Peas, Public Enemy and George Clinton. His dancing has been featured in assorted music videos on Much Music, and in a number of documentaries. He has performed privately for the Kirov Ballet of Russia, and opened for La La La Human Steps at Canada’s National Arts Centre. Stephen has also acted as a consultant and trainer for Cirque du Soleil.

 
 
 

 
 

Session 22
( 60 minute )

Youth Culinary Arts Program: Challenging Trauma through Resistance and Resilience

————Gio Dolcecore, MSW, RSW and Faye Archer Wilson, M.Ed, C.C.C.


The Youth Culinary Art Program (Y-CAP) is a no-fee employment training opportunity available to young adults at risk or experiencing homelessness. This introductory workshop explores how Anti-Oppressive Practice (AOP), a trauma-informed approach, is used as a healing tool for these individuals. First, the experience of trauma in relation to the historical and contemporary contexts of racism, homophobia and transphobia, classism, and other determinants of health will be explored. Second, the practice of AOP and Trauma Informed Care (TCI) will be discussed and described as they relate to responding to young adults who have experience with poverty, homelessness, violence and victimization. Third, trauma’s impact on childhood development, cognitive development, and the development and practice of emotional regulation will be emphasized. Finally, the use of resistance and resilience as empowering therapeutic tools for practitioners and caregivers will be shared.
 

Biography:

Gio is a registered social worker and mental health clinician for Wood’s Homes in Calgary, AB. Gio offers therapeutic counseling to all youth-based Housing First Programs, specializing in homelessness and poverty. Gio uses narrative approaches and specializes in trauma, grief and loss, and diverse genders and sexualities.

Faye Archer Wilson: Faye is a certified counselor and mental health clinician with Wood’s Homes in Calgary, AB. Faye works alongside Gio to provide mobile mental health supports to young people connected with Housing First programs. Specializing in trauma and social justice, Faye uses emotion-focused and integrative approaches.

 
 
 

 
 

Session 23
( 60 minute )

A Compassionate Response to Cyclical Behaviour

————Layna Aschenmeier


Cycles are everywhere. They are part of our everyday experience in our external and internal environments. Our brains also experience cyclical patterns that continue despite harmful outcomes to ourselves and others. In this workshop we will explore how connecting to a sense of embodied support and resources can help break cyclical patterns of behaviour that do not serve our healthiest self. This type of support and resources is not just words or things we say to ourselves - but is a deep sense within ourselves that we can reference in times of stress when our most rational self is offline. We will explore a theoretical model of understanding brain development that can inform us when assessing and treating harmful behaviours. 
 

Biography:

Layna is a Métis Social Worker who is a graduate student at the University of Toronto with a specialization in Indigenous Trauma and Resiliency. She works at Alberta Health Services and Aboriginal Counselling. She has a small private practice where she focuses on providing a trauma-sensitive model of support. 

 
 
 

 
 

Session 24
( 60 minute )

“They Don’t Give Up On Me” Edmonton Youth Housing First: Transitioning from Project to Program?

————Tamara Woldegebreal and Suzanne Kassian


This presentation will explore the lessons learned from Edmonton’s Youth Housing First pilot project transitioning to program implementation. The presentation will briefly discuss the program design prototyping process, prioritization and referral management and the case management model (Critical Time Intervention). The strengths-based, client-centred program model will be reviewed with a discussion about the successes and challenges during and after the transition.

 
 
 

 
 

Session 25
( 60 minute )

Youth Speak Out

————Cody Murrell and three youth


Youth Speak Out is a panel comprised of 3 youth (ages 15-24) who have been clients of Children’s Services. They present on their experiences, the good/bad, in a constructive way that assists professionals in understanding their experiences and critically thinking about their practice (what works/doesn't work).

 
 
 

 
 

Session 26
( 60 minute )

Police & Youth Engagement Program (PYEP): An Ethnocultural Perspective

————Helen Rusich, Andrew Jimaga, Timiro Mohamed, Luna Ghebermicael


 

Day 2

Afternoon

 
 

 
 

Afternoon Keynote
( 75 minutes )

They Come For The HipHop - But Stay For The Healing


————Stephen “Buddha” Leafloor


Stephen “Buddha” Leafloor will take you on a journey overcoming his own trauma and rebuilding his life through Hip Hop. From his early days dancing for the likes of James Brown, Public Enemy and Ice-T to his innovative approach working in Indigenous communities, blending their own culture with modern day Hip Hop elements. Engagement techniques will be explored and stories shared. Finding creative ways to build resiliency with youth and create pathways for healing is at the core of this work which has grown to included working in over 50 remote communities, urban centres and many of Canada’s maximum security youth facilities.


Biography:

Blue Print For Life and Blueprint Pathways founder and Executive Director, Stephen Leafloor, has a Masters in Social Work (MSW degree) and over 30 years’ experience in areas such as probation, wilderness programs, street work with at-risk youth, residential group homes, child protection and community outreach. Stephen has also been a keynote speaker at many national and international conferences on social work and how to engage youth. Ashoka, one of the world’s most prestigious organizations for international outreach, appointed Stephen an Ashoka Fellow for Canada. He has also been made a Making More Health Fellow for an international working group on health issues. In 2011, Governor General, Michaëlle Jean, presented Stephen with an award for his outreach service, and in 2016 he received the Meritorious Service Cross from Governor General, David Johnston. Zoomer Magazine named Stephen one of Canada’s Top “45 Over 45” in 2012. In addition to his community work, Stephen continues to be an active participant in Hip Hop culture as a dancer. He has performed for James Brown, rapper Ice-T, Grandmaster Flash, Black Eyed Peas, Public Enemy and George Clinton. His dancing has been featured in assorted music videos on Much Music, and in a number of documentaries. He has performed privately for the Kirov Ballet of Russia, and opened for La La La Human Steps at Canada’s National Arts Centre. Stephen has also acted as a consultant and trainer for Cirque du Soleil.

 
 
 

 
 

Session 27
( 90 minutes )

Workshop of Superheroes and Villains

————Stephen “Buddha” Leafloor


A fun brainstorming interactive way of engaging professionals on Edmonton’s future.
 

Biography:

Blue Print For Life and Blueprint Pathways founder and Executive Director, Stephen Leafloor, has a Masters in Social Work (MSW degree) and over 30 years’ experience in areas such as probation, wilderness programs, street work with at-risk youth, residential group homes, child protection and community outreach. Stephen has also been a keynote speaker at many national and international conferences on social work and how to engage youth. Ashoka, one of the world’s most prestigious organizations for international outreach, appointed Stephen an Ashoka Fellow for Canada. He has also been made a Making More Health Fellow for an international working group on health issues. In 2011, Governor General, Michaëlle Jean, presented Stephen with an award for his outreach service, and in 2016 he received the Meritorious Service Cross from Governor General, David Johnston. Zoomer Magazine named Stephen one of Canada’s Top “45 Over 45” in 2012. In addition to his community work, Stephen continues to be an active participant in Hip Hop culture as a dancer. He has performed for James Brown, rapper Ice-T, Grandmaster Flash, Black Eyed Peas, Public Enemy and George Clinton. His dancing has been featured in assorted music videos on Much Music, and in a number of documentaries. He has performed privately for the Kirov Ballet of Russia, and opened for La La La Human Steps at Canada’s National Arts Centre. Stephen has also acted as a consultant and trainer for Cirque du Soleil. 

 
 
 

 
 

Session 28
( 90 minute )

Speaking OUT: A Special Report on LGBTQ2S+ Young People in the Child Welfare and Youth Justice Systems

————Arlene Eaton-Erickson


LGBTQ2S+ young people are vulnerable. Studies show that they are overrepresented in the youth homeless population and have higher rates of depression, anxiety, substance abuse, self-harm, suicide and contracting sexually transmitted diseases. The Office of Child and Youth Advocate recently released a Special Report on LGBTQ2S+ young people involved with child intervention and youth justice systems. Through listening to young people and stakeholders we learned about what is working and what can be done better. This presentation will outline the findings from this report. It will give attendees an opportunity to learn from the experiences of LGBTQ2S+ young people in government care and gain concrete tools to apply to their practice in order to better serve this population. There will be opportunities for small group discussions and questions throughout the presentation.
 

Biography:

Arlene has been a social worker for 21 years and is currently the Manager of Systemic
Advocacy, Evaluation and Research with The Office of the Child and Youth Advocate
(OCYA).  She has been with the OCYA for twelve years in a number of different roles. Prior to
this she was with Child and Family Services (Human Services) as a front-line worker and
supervisor from 1996-2004, with a focus of her work being on high risk youth. Arlene is also a
sessional instructor with the University of Calgary (Faculty of Social Work) and Grant
MacEwan University.

 
 
 

 
 

Session 29
( 90 minute )

Communicating Effectively with Youth Experiencing Chronic Trauma

————Peter Smyth, MSW, RSW and Heather Peddle


High-risk youth are “the disconnected.” Many of these youth have had negative experiences
with “the system,” perceiving that their needs were not met and that their relationship with
case workers and service providers was problematic. Impacting this is a lack of understanding that a vast majority of high-risk youth come from traumatic childhoods and lack connections during their childhood and adolescent years. They have also experienced much trauma through no fault of their own. This impacts their brain development and social functioning which can lead to challenges with engaging youth, and the youth reaching out for help and support. However, adults tend to focus on negative behaviours rather than examining how their own practice can be a barrier to making much needed connections. The workshop explains outlines the impact of early trauma on children and youth and highlights the need to shift from punishment-consequence interventions to a relationship-based practice. Here we will focus on avoiding the pitfalls through- Language: how strong of a message our words have, Messaging vs Interpretation: What we say and what youth hear are sometimes different, and avoiding the 3 traps of : Power struggles, zero tolerance, and 3 strikes. From this we will explore how to pull youth in with a focus on resiliency.
 

Biography:

Peter Smyth: Peter oversees the High Risk Youth Initiative with Edmonton & Area Child & Family Services Region. He developed a practice framework and philosophy incorporating non-traditional intervention methods to better meet the needs of complex, troubled and street-involved youth population. He has written a book, book chapters and articles about issues confronting youth. He provides consultation, training and workshops on engaging and working with youth. Peter is a sessional instructor at the University of Calgary, Faculty of Social Work, and at the MacEwan University Social Work Program. His book High Risk Youth: A Relationship-based Practice Framework, was released in 2017.

Heather Peddle: Heather Peddle has been with Edmonton Region Child and Family Services for the past three years focusing on youth, but her experience with youth engaged in high-risk lifestyle spans 18 years. During her nine years with Edmonton John Howard Society, Heather worked in the REE*START program including in the role of coordinator.  Heather is involved in various community initiatives and committee’s aimed at supporting practice that is creative and reflective of the changing and unique needs of high-risk and at-risk youth. Heather continues to support the integration of a trauma-informed, harm reduction, and strength-based practice in her work with youth.

 
 
 

 
 

Session 30
( 90 minute )

Mindfulness Practices for Youth Impacted by Trauma

————Larisa Jeffares and Nicole Wiens


A 90 minute workshop designed to support educators, health-care providers, first responders and human services workers to understand the impact of trauma on brain development and how mindfulness can be used as a tool to re-wire the brain and release the effects of trauma. Workshop participants will engage with this topic through discussion, questions and hands on experience with a variety of mindfulness practices. They will leave with a better understanding of trauma and mindfulness and will be provided with a mindfulness toolkit that they can begin using with their youth immediately.
 

Biography:

Larisa Jeffares: Larisa holds her Bachelor of Arts degree from MacEwan University in Child and Youth Care Counselling, her diploma in Child and Youth Care from MacEwan University, her instructional certificate in teaching adults to meditate, Lifestyle Meditation and her Level 2 Reiki Certificate. Larisa has extensive experience working with children, youth and families. Professionally, she has worked for seventeen years with at risk youth and their families in various capacities. She has been a child and family services case worker with Inner City Connections (ICC) and the High Risk Youth Unit (HRYU). Larisa has also been an assessor for Protection for Sexually Exploited Youth and for Northern Alberta Child Intervention Services. She has worked in Boyle Street Community Services as an adult outreach worker. She is a steering-committee-member for the Allies (4) Youth Conference. Most recently, she has created a mindfulness coaching company called Wolf Willow Well-being. Wolf Willow Well-being supports people who have experienced any form of trauma using a variety of mindfulness practices, Reiki and nature as a classroom. 

Nicole Wiens: Nicole has a Bachelor of Arts degree from Concordia University College of Alberta and a Bachelor of Education degree from University of Alberta. Nicole understands the importance of mindfulness both as a personal practice and as a teaching tool, and incorporates these practices into her classroom and work with individual client. Her personal goal is: “To live life fully and help others do the same in any way that I can”.

 
 
 

 
 

Session 31
( 90 minute )

Calgary Youth Advisory Table - influencing policy, improving services and creating awareness about youth homelessness

————Shane Rempel, Suzanne Leacock, and two youth presenters


The Youth Advisory Table (YAT) provides the opportunity for youth who have experience with homelessness to share their perspectives, be consulted on their knowledge of the issues of homelessness and have this knowledge influence policy, improve services and create awareness about youth homelessness. The YAT is a subsidiary of the Youth Sector Committee, which is comprised of a number of stakeholders and organizations in the youth-serving sector in Calgary. The Youth Sector collectively advocates on the needs of youth at risk of or experiencing homelessness. We hope to have 2-5 youth attend to present on a panel. This presentation will focus on the following areas:

  • History and creation of the YAT & the stories of what brought the youth to YAT

  • Role of the YAT within the Calgary Youth Sector and larger community

  • Youth Panel where youth will discuss how they joined the YAT, what they have been able to accomplish and what this experience means to them personally


Biography:

Shane Rempel: Shane is a co-facilitator of the Youth Advisory Table, and System Planner for youth housing and support programs with the Calgary Homeless Foundation. Also Co-Chair of Calgary’s Youth Sector who is responsible for Calgary’s Plan to End and Prevent Youth Homelessness. Active participant in collective impact initiatives to work with community partners and stakeholders to end and prevent homelessness in Calgary.

Suzanne Leacock: Suzanne is an Addiction Counsellor at Alberta Health Services, Youth Addiction Services and has worked with high risk youth, families, and community partners who work with these youth for over 20 years. Her current role as a Safe Communities Mobile Counsellor includes both client work. consultation and community capacity building.

 
 
 

 
 

Session 32
( 90 minute )

The Effect of Early Experiences on Brain Development, Learning, and Health

————Dr. Nicole Sherren


Converging lines of evidence from neuroscience, molecular biology, genetics, and the social sciences tell us that early experiences are literally built into our brains and bodies to affect our life course trajectory, for good or for ill. This has profound implications for all of the policies, programs, and services that support children, youth, and families. In this session, you will learn how brains are built: what kind of experiences promote healthy brain architecture, what kind of experiences derail it, and how these experiences get “under our skins” to affect learning, health, and social outcomes across the life span.
 

Biography:

Nicole is the Scientific Director and Senior Program Officer with the Palix Foundation. She has a PhD in Neuroscience with expertise in experience-based brain development, neurodevelopmental disorders, and brain plasticity. Nicole joined the Palix Foundation in 2007 to focus on mobilizing scientific knowledge into policy and professional practice.

 
 
 

 

Session 33
( 60 minutes )

Words Matter

————Stephen “Buddha” Leafloor


Biography:

Blue Print For Life and Blueprint Pathways founder and Executive Director, Stephen Leafloor, has a Masters in Social Work (MSW degree) and over 30 years’ experience in areas such as probation, wilderness programs, street work with at-risk youth, residential group homes, child protection and community outreach. Stephen has also been a keynote speaker at many national and international conferences on social work and how to engage youth. Ashoka, one of the world’s most prestigious organizations for international outreach, appointed Stephen an Ashoka Fellow for Canada. He has also been made a Making More Health Fellow for an international working group on health issues. In 2011, Governor General, Michaëlle Jean, presented Stephen with an award for his outreach service, and in 2016 he received the Meritorious Service Cross from Governor General, David Johnston. Zoomer Magazine named Stephen one of Canada’s Top “45 Over 45” in 2012. In addition to his community work, Stephen continues to be an active participant in Hip Hop culture as a dancer. He has performed for James Brown, rapper Ice-T, Grandmaster Flash, Black Eyed Peas, Public Enemy and George Clinton. His dancing has been featured in assorted music videos on Much Music, and in a number of documentaries. He has performed privately for the Kirov Ballet of Russia, and opened for La La La Human Steps at Canada’s National Arts Centre. Stephen has also acted as a consultant and trainer for Cirque du Soleil. 

 
 
 

 
 

Session 34
( 60 minutes )

Fair is Not Equal: Restorative Practices in a Traditional High School

————Anne Lambert


The ACCESS program is a multifaceted in-reach program located in Jasper Place High School in Edmonton. Learn about the centre’s philosophy and how they empower youth to transition and connect to a traditional school system. Program Leader Anne Lambert also runs community conferencing within her school and catchment area as an alternative to the expulsion process. Participants will learn about the philosophy and set up of the program; successes and challenges when advocating for students. 


Biography:

Ann has 22 years with Edmonton Public School Board working with high-risk students in all 4 divisions. She was a presenter at the Alberta Restorative Justice Conference 2016. 

 
 
 

 
 

Session 35
( 60 minutes )

The Circle of Courage Leadership Program

————Veronica Graff with Kyle Woods, Mason Scarthe, Tyree Papin, Sierra Cardinal, Jalisa Taypotat, Jared Pruden.


Veronica Graff, Indigenous Advisor with Edmonton Public Schools, since 2012 the Circle of Courage Leadership Program has supported Indigenous students from M. E. Lazerte High and Londonderry Junior High Schools. The Circle of Courage model is based on the principles of Belonging, Mastery, Independence, and Generosity. The presentations will: (1) describe the program; (2) examine the relationship between program objectives, activities and outcomes; (3) share promising practices and lessons. The presentation offers an empirical contribution to understanding educational initiatives that are having a positive impact on Indigenous students and families. Indigenous share how the program has supported them in their families, culture, education, and communities. Information on how to implement the Circle of Courage program in various school settings, and how to utilize the model to support education and culture of Indigenous students will also be shared.

 
 
 

 
 

Session 36
( 60 minutes )

Therapeutic inclusive framework building: relationships with youth, supports, and family

————Jennifer Tokar, Jenn Bolin, and Sabeen Gill


We will provide exposure to different therapeutic modalities when engaging with youth struggling with high risk lifestyles. A hands-on presentation where you will have the opportunity to challenge thinking patterns and create more awareness of how we work with youth. 


Biography:

Jennifer Tokar Mobile Addiction Counsellor Alberta Health Services Youth Addiction Services Edmonton - Jennifer has 18 years’ experience working with those who struggle with substance use, mental health trauma as well as homelessness. She has worked with adults and young adults in a variety of capacities and roles. She has worked at Henwood Treatment Centre, Catholic Social Services FASD programs, George Spady, Calgary Drop In and Rehabilitation Centre, Capital Health, Boys and Girls Club, Youth Residential Treatment Program, Youth Stabilization Program, PChAD and currently she is a Mobile Addiction Counsellor for Alberta Health Services Youth Addiction Services Edmonton.  Jennifer has a strong belief in social justice as well as harm reduction and has engaged in a variety of volunteer activities in the community.

Jenn Bolin has worked with children, youth and families experiencing trauma, mental health challenges and substance use for over 16 years and for the past 5 years has been a Mobile Addictions Counsellor with Youth Addiction Services. In that time, Jenn has worked supporting numerous programs in the community, including mental health collaborative programs, justice programs and currently has been the addictions counsellor at the Stollery Children’s Hospital for 3 years and the addictions counsellor for PSECA (Protection of Sexually Exploited Children’s Act) for 4 years.

Sabeen Gill is an Outpatient Counsellor with Youth Addiction Services. In this role she supports youth and families who are struggling with substance use concerns and mental health challenges. She holds a B.Ed in Secondary Education from the University of Alberta and a M.Ed in Counselling Psychology from the University of Lethbridge. Her professional experiences include working as an Educator for Alberta Health Services, a Personal Development Facilitator for Norquest College in the Edmonton Remand Centre, Counsellor at Calgary Counselling Centre and also supporting individuals who experience homelessness at the Calgary Drop In Centre. Sabeen also teaches in the Mental Health and Addiction Recovery Practitioner Program at Norquest College and is passionate about helping adult learners build their professional capacity. Services, Addictions and Mental Health

 
 
 

 
 

Session 37
( 60 minutes )

Collaboration in Wraparound from All Sides: Partner and Participant Perspectives

————Holly Hallborg and Carolee Israel Turner


Two cities. Two unique collaborations. Both delivering the same high fidelity wraparound process for youth at risk of gang involvement. Representatives from WrapED (Edmonton) and Real Me (Calgary) will talk about their projects that have the same funder, use the same process, and yet are very different. Partnership will be the focus of the presentation: what collaboration looks like in both cities - what works well, what has been challenging, and what the key learnings have been to date. Further, the voices of immigrant and Indigenous youth will be shared and elevated to demonstrate how collaboration helps deter them from criminal and gang activity. Both projects work with youth who are at risk of or engaged in gang activity. WrapED works with primarily Indigenous, immigrant and refugee youth. Real Me works exclusively with immigrant youth. Both projects are set up differently, but use the high fidelity wraparound process.


Biography:

Cheryl Shinkaruk: Cheryl is the Manager: Programs & Projects with Edmonton Catholic Schools. She holds her Masters of Education, along with certification in Social Emotional Learning supports within the school setting. She has a passion for supporting students through a holistic approach.

Tammy Woroschuk: Tammy is a Registered Social Worker and Manager-Social Work for ECSD. Tammy has completed her graduate level practicum with Cheryl on the topic of social and emotional learning.

 
 
 

 
 

Session 38
( 60 minutes )

Youth Culinary Arts Program: Challenging Trauma through Resistance and Resilience

————Gio Dolcecore and Faye Archer Wilson (Wood’s Homes)


The Youth Culinary Art Program (Y-CAP) is a no-fee employment training opportunity available to young adults at risk or experiencing homelessness. This introductory workshop explores how Anti-Oppressive Practice (AOP), a trauma-informed approach, is used as a healing tool for these individuals. First, the experience of trauma in relation to the historical and contemporary contexts of racism, homophobia and transphobia, classism, and other determinants of health will be explored. Second, the practice of AOP and Trauma Informed Care (TCI) will be discussed and described as they relate to responding to young adults who have experience with poverty, homelessness, violence and victimization. Third, trauma’s impact on childhood development, cognitive development, and the development and practice of emotional regulation will be emphasized. Finally, the use of resistance and resilience as empowering therapeutic tools for practitioners and caregivers will be shared.


Biography:

Gio is a registered social worker and mental health clinician for Wood’s Homes in Calgary, AB. Gio offers therapeutic counseling to all youth-based Housing First Programs, specializing in homelessness and poverty. Gio uses narrative approaches and specializes in trauma, grief and loss, and diverse genders and sexualities.

Faye Archer Wilson: Faye is a certified counselor and mental health clinician with Wood’s Homes in Calgary, AB. Faye works alongside Gio to provide mobile mental health supports to young people connected with Housing First programs. Specializing in trauma and social justice, Faye uses emotion-focused and integrative approaches.

 
 
 

 
 

Session 39
( 60 minutes )

Mentoring Relationships—Creating Connections for Youth In Care

————Showna Blanchard and Michelle Draper-Anderson


Three mentoring organizations in Alberta are working together with an advisory group to provide mentoring programs by creating and fostering meaningful relationships between volunteer mentors and vulnerable youth. The project focuses on implementing best practice approaches around volunteer engagement including volunteer recruitment, screening, training, matching and support. The three agencies are working closely with their communities in Edmonton, Red Deer and Calgary to ensure that mentoring has a strong role in the continuum of services available to the children and youth in care. Evaluation of the project has been a key element that has walked alongside the agencies to capture the success, challenges and outcomes that have occurred. The panel of presenters will share lessons learned, innovative practices and the power of collaboration.