Tag Archive: family empowerment

  1. Community Conversation about Children’s Mental Health in Charlottesville

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    On December 4th, Voices for Virginia’s Children is working with partners in the greater Charlottesville area to organize and host an event, “A Community Conversation about Children’s Mental Health,” to raise awareness of the need for elected officials and residents in the greater Charlottesville area to address mental heath issues in children. We are hoping that this event will provide a unique opportunity for families, advocates, school system representatives, public and private mental health service providers, and legislators to come together to hear about recent positive developments in the children’s mental health system as well as discuss the continuing difficulties in accessing effective treatment.

    We are thrilled that Senator Creigh Deeds will be joining  a panel of mental health providers to discuss children’s mental health and answer questions.  

    We hope this event can serve as an important vehicle for keeping children’s mental health issues in the spotlight for key legislators and for bringing together families and treatment professionals to discuss ways to improve the lives of children with mental health challenges.

    Here are the details:

    When:  Thursday, December 4th, 2014, Food available at 6:00 PM, 6:30-8:30 PM Program

    Where: Jefferson School City Center, Carver Recreation Center; 233 4th Stree, NW, Charlottesville, VA 22903

    This event is FREE and food will be provided.  Childcare and transportation stipends available

    Click here to register:   http://surveymonkey.com/s/cvillekids 

    Questions:  Contact Ashley Everette at ashley@vakids.org

    Check out the flyer and share with friends:  Community Conversation December 2014 FINAL[1]







  2. Empowering Families

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    A version of this blog post, written by Campaign Coordinator Margaret Nimmo Crowe, initially appeared on the Behavioral Health Matters blog.

    As coordinator of the Campaign for Children’s Mental Health at Voices for Virginia’s Children, I regularly talk to parents who are struggling to help their children with mental health issues. They are often extremely frustrated because they cannot find the treatment that their child needs in their community, or there is a long wait list for services, or their insurance won’t pay for the type of treatment their child needs.

    Compounding these frustrations, many parents with whom I talk feel isolated. They don’t know other families struggling with children’s mental health disorders. They may not be receiving support from friends or their child’s school. Their families’ lives have been thrown into disarray – emotionally, logistically, and financially – as they try to find help for the child who needs it while continuing to work and take care of other children.

    One question I often hear is, “Why it is so difficult to get help when your child has a mental health problem as opposed to a physical health problem?” The answer is complex, and the Campaign for Children’s Mental Health is working to improve access to services through a variety of strategies.

    The key to improving access to children’s mental health services – through every strategy we are using – is mobilizing the families who have experience with this issue. And there are more of you than you might think. Did you know that 1 in 5 children experience a mental health disorder? Chances are you DO know other families who have a child with ADHD, depression, anxiety, or another mental health challenge, but because of the stigma that still exists, you and they have never made the connection.

    Part of what we do at the Campaign is help families realize the difference they can make by speaking out, and we equip them to do so. For example:

    • Telling your stories can reduce the stigma of mental illness; together, we can help reduce the isolation so many families and children feel, and make it okay to ask for help.

    • Walking advocates through the barriers your family has encountered as you’ve tried to seek help enables us to identify the policies that need to be changed or the types of services that need to be created.

    • Sharing your experience with legislators can help them realize the real-life implications of the funding decisions they make.

    One parent we’ve worked with at the Campaign is Shannon Haworth. After talking to lawmakers in Washington, DC, she was asked in a radio interview last summer what it feels like to advocate. She replied, “You feel like you’re just a parent in a sea of other parents who need help, and so when you’re able to talk to people and tell your specific story and have people listen, it empowers you.”

    Please join the Campaign for Children’s Mental Health so that all families who struggle with the children’s mental health system can be similarly empowered.

  3. Campaign coordinator to speak at Williamsburg Symposium April 18

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    Together We Can…Creating a Caring Community For Our Children

    Campaign Coordinator Margaret Nimmo Crowe is pleased to be the keynote speaker at this exciting conference about children’s mental health. Please join us on April 18th in Williamsburg!

    Colonial Behavioral Health is sponsoring this exciting day-long symposium designed especially for families and those who serve them in the area of children’s behavioral health services. Margaret will speak about “Strategies for Family Empowerment,” covering a variety of ways that families can support their own kids as well as all those in Virginia who struggle with behavioral health issues. Lunchtime speakers are Gina Gallagher and Patricia Konjoain, sisters and parents of children with behavioral health issues. They are very funny and informative national speakers who wrote the book, “Shut Up about Your Perfect Kid.” You can learn more about them at http://www.shutupabout.com.

    Workshop topics include:

    • Substance Use
    • Psychotropic Meds
    • Advocacy
    • Financial Planning
    • Self-harm
    • Trauma
    • And more.

    Date: Thursday, April 18
    Time: 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
    Location: Williamsburg Hotel and Conference Center
    (50 Kingsmill Rd, Williamsburg, VA 23185)
    Registration: Free – Lunch is provided – registration is required by April 10

    To register click here.

    Included in the event will be a network fest of community partners connecting families to services and resources; a book sale of titles recommended by the day’s presenters, door prizes and more!!

    Featured Keynote Speakers:
     – Margaret Nimmo-Crowe, Policy Director at Voices for Virginia’s Children
     – Gina Gallagher & Patricia Konjoain: National Speakers “Shut Up about Your Perfect Kid”

    Download a flier about the Symposium.

    Download the Symposium program.

    Sponsored by Colonial Behavioral Health in partnership with the Department of Behavioral Health and Disability Services and the Williamsburg Community Health Foundation

     We hope to see you there!