Letter from the Executive Director  
 
Beginning in 1983, the month of April has been designated Child Abuse Prevention Month in the United States. Each year is an opportunity to learn about the signs of child abuse and how to prevent it. Communities around the nation come together to support families and children by reinforcing strategies that are working and by providing resources and activities to help end child abuse and neglect. In 2016, the theme was "Building Community, Building Hope".  According to childwelfare.gov, this theme "...acknowledges the tremendous power in communities to address the problem of child abuse and neglect and reflects our goal of providing [efforts] within research, policy, and practice related to promoting child and family well-being and protecting children, to ensure that they grow up to achieve their full potential, free from abuse and neglect." 

As child welfare practitioners in the greater St. Louis area, you know only too well what happens to children and youth when this breaks down and does not happen. When children are not allowed to grow up in abuse- and neglect-free homes and instead find themselves in foster care their well-being has been interrupted by trauma and emotional upheaval. Without you, the child's CASA volunteer, it's an even deeper hole for that  child to climb out of. So, thank you for being there for these children and youth. You are so very important.
Steve Moergen
Executive Director  
 
Continuing Education
Opportunities to Earn Your Annual CE Credits
 
 
Be Attentive: All Language Matters! Using Trauma Sensitive Language 

"The client is a no-show." "Client A threw a temper tantrum in session today." Name-calling, shaming, blaming and deficit-based language is common in our field, both in verbal and written communication.

How we talk about youth, young adults and families plays a major role in how they engage in our services. Pejorative language and labeling reinforces negative messages trauma survivors carry about themselves and puts up barriers. What are you doing to make changes?
 
Register for the free webinar on Thursday, April 20th at 2pm EST in order to:
  • Identify negative language
  • Explain the hazards of negative language, especially to children, young adults and families who have experienced trauma
  • Describe positive alternatives to common negative language used
*Interested but can't attend? Fill out the registration form to automatically receive an email with the recording.
 
Info for logging your credits in OPTIMA:
Training Topic  - Foster Care, Abuse/Neglect Effects
Format:  Webinar/Podcast
Trainer  - Mass Media, Voices Endorsed CASA Chronicle
1 CEs

New Book add to Lending Library

Shattered Bonds: The Color of Child Welfare, by Dorothy Roberts. Ms. Roberts is a professor at Northwestern University School of Law and a fellow at Northwestern Institute for Policy Research. This book is a "stirring account of a worsening American social crisis - the disproportionate representation of black children in the US foster care system and its effects on black communities and the country as a whole. Tying the origins and impact of this disparity to racial injustice, Dorothy Roberts contends that child welfare policy reflects a political choice to address startling rates of black child poverty by punishing parents instead of tackling poverty's societal roots."

Info for logging your credits in OPTIMA:
Training Topic  - Diversity, race & disparity/disproportionality
Format:  Book
Trainer  - Mass Media, Voices Endorsed CASA Chronicle
1 CEs
 
Contact Cheryl Latham, Director of Volunteer Programs at cdlatham@voices-stl.org or 314-615-4543 if you have questions.
Advocacy Resources 
Books, Websites and Relevant Info for Your CASA Work
 
The Schiele Clinic
of the St. Louis Psychoanalytic Institute 
 
The Schiele Clinic provides affordable, confidential psychotherapy with:

  • Appropriate resources and treatment methods
  • Fees based on a patient's ability to pay
  • No waiting list
  • No insurance needed

Call the therapists of the Schiele Clinic at 314.361.7075 ext 444, www.stlpi.org.  The clinic has a network of over 75 therapists, supporting the mental health needs of the St. Louis community and offering treatment throughout region.


 

 
Missouri Parents Act (MPACT)
Empowering Families. Enhancing Opportunities

Missouri Parents Act (MPACT) is Missouri's Parent Training and Information Center, funded in part by the U.S. Department of Education and the State of Missouri. Our mission is to empower families to advocate for themselves so that children with special educational needs can reach their full potential in education and life - through support, training, and education.

Education
MPACT offers parents many valuable resources about topics related to special education. We also provide one-to-one assistance and in-person support.

Empowerment
MPACT offers parents, students and professionals FREE in-person and online trainings designed to empower you as you advocate for a successful future.

Information
Sign up for our bi-monthly newsletter that provides parents & professionals with timely information on topics related to special education in Missouri.

For more information visit http://www.missouriparentsact.org.
 


Missouri Parents Act (MPACT)
Empowering Families. Enhancing Opportunities

Missouri Parents Act (MPACT) is Missouri's Parent Training and Information Center, funded in part by the U.S. Department of Education and the State of Missouri. Our mission is to empower families to advocate for themselves so that children with special educational needs can reach their full potential in education and life - through support, training, and education.

Education
MPACT offers parents many valuable resources about topics related to special education. We also provide one-to-one assistance and in-person support.

Empowerment
MPACT offers parents, students and professionals FREE in-person and online trainings designed to empower you as you advocate for a successful future.

Information
Sign up for our bi-monthly newsletter that provides parents & professionals with timely information on topics related to special education in Missouri.

For more information visit http://www.missouriparentsact.org.
 


CASA Volunteer Advisory Committee

 
To quote the movie Jerry Maguire, "help me, help you!" That is the purpose of the newly formed Volunteer Advisory Committee (made up of CASAs from both City and County) and we are excited to tell you more about it! The Committee Charter lists several responsibilities which revolve around assisting CASA volunteers. These include: providing timely information about the positive and negative aspects of child advocacy, volunteering in the two defined jurisdictions, acting as an informational link between the CASA volunteer and Voices staff, communicating service trends in both the City and County, providing feedback with regard to advocate training, and engaging in programmatic efficiency.
 
CASA volunteers are critical to the success of this endeavor. To help make communication easy, we are setting up a dedicated email address where you can "voice" comments, concerns, questions, suggestions and more. Please email us at vac@voices-stl.org.

Program Dashboard
Statistics as of April 1, 2017

205

Voices CASA volunteers
289

kids served by Voices CASA volunteers and staff
353

kids served by Voices staff
642

total kids served by Voices


Coming Events

Thursday, April 27
The Ritz-Carlton, St. Louis

Voices' largest annual fundraiser, the "Foster the Future" Gala is swiftly approaching and will take place on Thursday, April 27 at The Ritz-Carlton in Clayton. This is an important opportunity for Voices to share the incredible work you do with the community, as well as to raise much-needed funds to continue our advocacy.

We encourage you to share our six amazing raffle items with your friends and family! This is a great way to support Voices and a chance to win some fabulous prizes! Only 100 tickets will be sold for each raffle and you do NOT need to be present to win! 

Register for this event or purchase raffle tickets at www.voices-stl.org/gala