Friday Update

CMHNetwork Friday Update 3-5-21

March 05, 2021

Let’s start this issue of Friday Update off with the most amazing Freddie Mercury, singing ‘Time Waits for No One.’ What a treat! Enjoy the video, cuz, as Freddie says, “time waits for nobody.” So stop waiting and start doing. Enjoy the video, and then get to readin’ Friday Update, cuz we got work to do!

Most Important Reads of the Week

Integrated Care Begins With Self-Care
In this episode of The Optimistic Advocate podcast, I was thrilled to be able to interview Rebecca Pille, Department Chair, Health and Wellness Coaching at Maryland University of Integrative Health, and Laurie Ellington, Co-Founder of Zero Point Leadership. The conversation focused on the importance of self-care, something we could all use a little more of! Enjoy the interview, learn a bit of science to give you the nudge to take better care, and get excited about some fantastic opportunities for professional development at the Maryland University of Integrative Health, Health and Wellness Coaching Program. Dang, so much goodness in one podcast!

Yes, an Online Master’s is Possible!
Attend a virtual session on March 17 to find out more about the USF Child and Adolescent Behavioral Health Master’s Program.
The Children’s Mental Health Network has had great success working with students in the CABH Program at USF. The field needs many qualified professionals to serve in community, youth, and family agencies and organizations that promote the well-being of children, adolescents, and emerging adults. Learn more during a Virtual Information Session March 17 about the fully online master’s program in Child & Adolescent Behavioral Health. Register here.

 8th Annual USF Translational Research in Adolescent Drug Abuse Conference
Don’t miss the 8th Annual Conference, a mainstay at the Tampa Conference, but this year, going virtual! This conference will focus on the science and practice of implementing behavioral health services. National and local experts involved in innovative translational and implementation science research will share their expertise in the areas of health disparities, adolescent drug abuse, and evidence-based behavioral health services. The agenda and registration information are available here. Please register by March 15.

Families, Make Your Voices Heard: An Introduction to Advocacy Webinar
The National Family Support Technical Assistance Center (NFSTAC) and Partnership to End Addiction invite you to join us to learn how you can advocate for policies that support families and individuals impacted by mental health and substance use. Make your voices heard! Wednesday, March 10, 2021 – 1:00 – 2:00 pm ET.

2021 Parent Peer Support Institute
Don’t miss FREDLA’s Parent Support Institute. The Institute has something of value to offer those committed to parent peer support, whether you are a parent peer support provider, policymaker, administrator, or behavioral health provider. Register today!

Food, Hygiene Products, Art Supplies Delivered to Salem youth in Need Amid COVID-19
We love seeing media reports on the excellent work Youth ERA is doing in the midst of the pandemic. Keep it up, Youth ERA!
This article discusses what the organization YouthEra has been doing in the time of COVID. YouthEra is a nonprofit organization that has delivered numerous kits which contain food, hygiene products, and art supplies to transition-aged youth. For teens and young adults like Kano Robinson, Youth ERA has been a lifeline when he most needed it. Robinson, 25, connected with the Salem chapter of the nonprofit two years ago when he was homeless and living at a youth transitional shelter. Since, he’s attended peer support groups, built relationships within the community, obtained a job, and secured his own apartment. But Youth Era’s connection with Robinson and others like him doesn’t stop there.

Re-Imagining Child Welfare Through Technology and Innovation
The second season of the Florida Institute for Child Welfare podcast series on re-imagining child welfare through technology and innovation premiered on January 13, 2021. Tune in every other Wednesday through March 10 to hear all five episodes, which feature discussions between Dr. Jessica Pryce, Director of the Institute, and visionary leaders in child welfare. Learn about how technology, creativity, and collaboration is changing and innovating child welfare practice.

Washington State Young Adults Often End Up Homeless After Leaving Treatment
Nearly one-quarter of the roughly 5,200 young people who left Medicaid-funded inpatient care in the state of Washington were homeless or unstably housed within a year of discharge, according to a 2017 state report. Those numbers are almost certainly an undercount since the report included only youth who accessed food, housing, or cash assistance programs.

Behavioral Health and Service Usage During the COVID-19 Pandemic Among Emerging Adults Currently or Recently Experiencing Homelessness
Overall, this study’s results are encouraging in suggesting that knowledge of COVID-19 and engagement in protective strategies is widespread among emerging adults with experiences of homelessness. However, many report increased behavioral health problems, combined with greater difficulty in accessing services. Many are also having difficulty meeting their basic needs for food, safe shelter, and hygiene. The results should be interpreted with caution, given that they are based on self-report data from a small sample of YEH in the Los Angeles area who participated in a clinical trial at a drop-in center. Nonetheless, the results emphasize the need for innovative strategies to address this population’s increased behavioral health service needs during events such as the COVID-19 outbreak.

Science and Society Are Failing Children in the COVID Era
The long-anticipated CDC guidance on schools was released on February 12. In its guidance, the agency calls for K–12 schools, in particular, to reopen as soon as possible, noting that with safety precautions in place such as physical distancing, contact tracing, and mask-wearing, many have been able to open safely and stay open. The arguments about school openings during COVID-19 reflect an ongoing failure of science and society, in which academics and policymakers share responsibility.

Improving Student and Staff Well-Being During COVID-19 and Beyond: Connecting Social Emotional Learning with Anti-Racism and Equity
The pandemic has increased the urgency among school administrators to address student and staff behavioral health and wellness, which frequently includes social-emotional learning (SEL). Concurrently, the national call for racial justice has highlighted the need for schools and public institutions to address students and staff’s discrimination and racism. Although SEL programs have consistently been found to be effective, most do not explicitly address racism, discrimination, and inequities. This Issue Brief explores strategies to ensure that SEL curricula and broader school approaches to wellness incorporate principles of equity and anti-racism.

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About the Author

Scott Bryant-Comstock

Hello, I’m Scott Bryant-Comstock, CEO and founder of the Children’s Mental Health Network. For the past 40 years, my journey as a mental health advocate has traveled from volunteering at a suicide and crisis center, professional roles as a therapist in an outpatient clinic, in-home family therapist, state mental health official, Board Chair for a county mental health program, and national reviewer of children’s mental health systems reform efforts. As the founder of the Children’s Mental Health Network (2009), I lead the Network’s efforts to grow a national online forum to exchange ideas on how to improve children’s mental health research, policy, and practice.

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