March 2019

Compassion fatigue. Trauma stewardship. With so many really great youth who have experienced trauma and so many wonderful volunteers helping youth who have experienced trauma, it is important to that we all learn to manage stress and take care of ourselves!

Stress and anxiety manifest in different ways for kids and caregivers. Learn to recognize the signs and practice self-care. This newsletter is packed with tips and trainings!

Celebrating and sharing successes is fun and great stress relief. We would love to see YOU at Fostering Hope 2019!

Thank you for all the ways you take care of others in this world. Be sure to take care of yourself, too!

Susan Conwell, JD
Executive Director
Join us for our 10th Annual Fostering Hope event!
Fostering Hope is the first event of its kind in the state of Wisconsin. Founded by by Brigette Singletary, a former foster youth and local leader, the event shines a spotlight on the need to invest in foster youth success. While still a student at UW-Milwaukee, Brigette asked "Why aren't there more foster youth in college?" and took action to improve foster youth opportunities. Brigette went on to get her MBA degree and become a Certified Public Accountant (CPA). She is also a wife and mother to two lovely kids! Watch this space to learn more about Brigette and the Fostering Hope volunteers who have been making a difference for foster youth for a decade. Check out the event page on Facebook!
Stress Reduction and Wellness
It's even more challenging to ease a child's anxiety when you are also stressed and tired. This month, we want to help you take care of yourself. Here are a few opportunities open for caregivers and available for CASA volunteer continuing education:

  1. Surviving Compassion Fatigue: Help for the Helpers (Part 1 and Part 2)- California CASA Association training videos on protecting yourself from being traumatized by working with trauma victims. Handouts available here (scroll down to “Compassion Fatigue in Working with Youth”). 1.5 hours of CEUs.
  2. Come learn stress reduction techniques for yourself and to share with your child! Try out different stress reduction and wellness techniques to discover what feels good and assess your strengths and opportunities for growth. Led by Kids Matter staff Elena and Justine on April 25th from 6:00pm-7:30pm. 1.5 hour of CEUs for CASA volunteers, and caregivers are encouraged to join! RSVP by calling us at 414-344-1220.

Other resources:
  1. Trauma Stewardship: An Everyday Guide to Caring for Self While Caring for Others by Laura van Dernoot Lipsky
  2. Generations United Grand Resource: Practicing Self-Care

Anxiety can show up in different ways for people. Check out the infographic below:
Health and Wellness Resources for Native American Youth and Educators
Check out We R Native: For Native Youth, By Native Youth ! Northwest Portland Area Indian Health Board’s Tribal Epidemiology Center has created great websites to address health concerns for Native American populations. We R Native is a multimedia health resource for Native teens and young adults, and has so many sections to explore!

Are you working with a Native youth and interested in culturally relevant health curricula? Native Healthy Youth has curricula about mental health, suicide prevention and social media, and sexual health and healthy relationships.
Summer Camp Opportunities
We want to make sure all kids can go to camp!

Holiday Home Camp on the shores of Lake Geneva is for rising 2nd-8th graders and offers a variety of activities. Pick-up and drop-off from Mitchell Park Domes Parking Lot!
Dates : Stay overnight for 5 nights. June 14–19, June 22– 26, June 28–July 3, July 8–13, July 16-21, July 25–30, August 2–7.
Cost : Scholarship rates available to Kids Matter involved youth. Talk to the social worker, counselor or CASA volunteer coordinator working with your youth or family if you are interested in this option.

Royal Family Camp for Kids  specializes in children with a history of kinship or foster care, or abuse or neglect. Royal Family is for children 7-11 years old and is located in Cudahy, near Milwaukee. Applications are not out yet (due in May last year) but we'll provide updates future newsletters. If you have a kid who may need more attention and care during a summer camp experience, this may be a good option for them!  

Jewish Community Center  offers one-week day camps for K5-8th grade.  Check out the website for specific offerings  --JCC has camps for sports lovers, creative artists, and adventurers! Let your CASA volunteer supervisor know if you think one of these offerings might be right for your CASA youth!
Encourage a teen to get a summer job!

Do you remember learning about FICA? Or saving your pennies for a special purchase? Having jobs helps teens gain independence and learn economic skills. The City of Milwaukee has a few youth summer employment programs, which are paid and come with mentorship and support which may not be available at other jobs. Find more information about each program and apply through the links below!
Thank You for Your Support!
Thank you so much for making birthday and graduation cards for foster youth through our annual service project! Your words, art and joy make the difference.