December 2018
Happy Holidays!
We are excited to share that donations made through the end of the year will be matched 100% by an anonymous donor.
Amidst this holiday and winter season, we pause to think about children that have unstable housing.

This time of year can be especially difficult for children and families that lack a fixed, regular, and adequate nighttime residence (McKinney-Vento Act definition for homeless students). The McKinney-Vento Act does much to help support these students, but we must continue to advocate for policies and supports that help meet the needs of homeless students and families.

This Data Spotlight comes from VCR's Children of Metropolitan St. Louis: A Data Book for the Community. 
The official work of Project LAUNCH is wrapped up, but this past week was an example of how the work is continuing. VCR & Metro partnered to offer Project LAUNCH & System of Care families a holiday party and Metro Reimagined update. This is in direct relation to the Show Me Change StL Community Cafe: Transportation Series. Out of the cafe, there was a call from the community for more ongoing communication with Metro. During this Metro Reimagined update we learned about exciting new routes and features, many of which were influenced by community input through the cafes.
  • More frequent routes, meaning 15 minute or less wait times.

  • Real time arrival info available via call, text, and email.

  • Metro Customer Service texting
(Mon-Fri: 7 am - 6 pm)

  • Metro Public Safety texting 24/7
We are proud to share that one of our Family Advocates, Vivian Williams , has recently accepted the position as President of the Clinton-Peabody Tenant Association. Many of you know that VCR staff & longtime community leader, Sam Blue, served in this position previously. We are excited to see Vivian fill this roll, and trust she will do a great job! She is truly committed to serving her community.
Perhaps the best holiday gift for those who work with children and families who have experienced trauma is to explore ways to care for oneself. The St. Louis Child Abuse and Neglect Prevention Network (STLCANN) provided an opportunity to do this at the December training presented by Regina Whittington, LCSW and Mary Mogg, MSW.
The workshop explored concepts of stress, trauma stewardship (the practice of caring for oneself in order to remain effective in caring for others), boundaries, mindfulness and “letting go.” Mary and Regina offered tools to help participants create desired balance in their lives, to assist in value clarification and to create concrete plans for self-care. Self-care is both a skill and an art, so of course they emphasized the importance of practice and repetition to identify successful strategies and minimize barriers.

The session closed with participants making a commitment:
“Today I will decide to let go.” 
"Today I will decide to trust myself.”  
As you begin a new year, what will you do to take care of yourself?
For 36 years child advocates have come together in Jefferson City for Child Advocacy Day. As you look ahead to 2019, mark your calendar now. You don't want to miss this!
The ASQ Screening Collaborative was built to help change the fact that children's screening data is available only at an individual organization level in the St. Louis Region. Locally, we lack a clear picture of how many children are being screened, and how many children are in need of further supports. The collaborative is working together to change that, and Anita Blagajcevic has joined the VCR team & ASQ Collaborative as the new Early Childhood Screening & Referral Manager.
Her professional career spans the fields of education and social work - making her new role a great fit. Anita is deeply passionate about early childhood development and excited to utilize her skillset to drive forward VCR's goals around creating the infrastructure needed to screen children early for potential social, emotional, & developmental needs.
Thought-provoking presentations from five community leaders at Better Together's Reimagining St. Louis event. These talks definitely have us thinking about the ways in which we would reimagine St. Louis in order to improve child well-being.
(From Better Together)
A report that profiles three communities using early childhood data in clear and important ways to tailor more effective interventions and yield better results. Exciting to think about what is possible in the St. Louis community for our youngest citizens and their families. (From CSSP)
Connect With Us
Vision for Children at Risk | | 314.534.6015