Friday Update

Friday Update 5-1-20

May 01, 2020

Hey Network faithful, let’s get this issue of Friday Update started with the amazing Josh Turner. What’s that? You don’t know who Josh Turner is? Well you should. Enjoy his multiple persona rendition of the Pete Seeger classic, Turn, Turn, Turn. Listen to the words, which resonate during this time of pandemic, enjoy the masterful guitar work of Josh Turner, and then get to readin’ Friday Update, cuz we got work to do!

Most Important News of the Week

Update on the Tampa Conference 2021 and Beyond
I want to share with Network faithful the difficult decision that Mario Hernandez and I made not to hold the 2021 Tampa Conference. The conference was scheduled to take place in Tampa, Florida, in March, 2021. With so much uncertainty right now about travel restrictions and overall health safety concerns, we deemed it best to cancel the 2021 conference. We are already hard at work with our planning process for the conference to continue after next year. Please know that if you were scheduled to present at the 2020 conference and would like to share your work, please let me know. The CMHNetwork would be happy to organize a Zoom webinar for you to share your work with a broader audience, should you not have the capability in house to do so.

The Optimistic Advocate
Oh man, you know I just had to scratch the itch during this time of Pandemic. Yep, The Optimistic Advocate podcast has been birthed! In this first episode, I do an in-depth interview with Martin Rafferty, CEO, and founder of Youth ERA. If you know of an amazing advocate you would like to hear more from, let me know, and we will see if we can get them scheduled for a chat.​​​

The ABC’s of COVID-19
What a delightful and educational production by Dr. Sanjay Gupta and our favorites at Sesame Street. Last week, CNN and Sesame Street held a coronavirus town hall in which Dr. Gupta explained to Elmo why face masks and proper handwashing techniques are helpful to stop the spread of coronavirus. Plus, Dr. Gupta took questions from young viewers all across the country. Watch with your young children and learn together. Good stuff!

The Neuroscience of Wraparound: Seeing Collaboration and Collective Intelligence Through the Lens of Brain Science
A White Paper Written by Laurie A. Ellington
This paper discusses some of the most recent findings from modern neuroscience that provide Wraparound leaders and practitioners new ways of understanding engagement, collaboration, and the nature of group intelligence in a Wraparound process.

Understanding the Mental Health Effects of Imposed Social Distancing
The Population Mental Health & Wellbeing Program at the Colorado School of Public Health has launched a survey to better understand the mental health effects of imposed social distancing. This survey is open to US and international participants aged 18 and older. These data will lead to evidence-based interventions to improve coping during and after the COVID-19 pandemic. If you have questions about the survey, contact Jennifer Jewell, MSPH, DrPH(c), Population Mental Health and Wellbeing Program, Colorado School of Public Health –

Stay Home for My Life (Virtual Youth Fest)
An inspiring online event designed for youth and young adults who have experience with mental health, substance use, foster care and/or other challenges. Thursday, May 7th, from 4 – 5:30 pm ET. Registration is required for this free event – This event will be held every Thursday until “Stay at Home” orders are lifted.

Free KnKt’d Health Platform Training
KnKt’d (founded by Network faithful, Matt Holland) is offering free use of their health app for 120 days. Give it a test-drive! Here is the app store description – “KnKt’d Health is a (App/Cloud/Website) software platform for better connecting you and your providers daily. The system is designed to be completely person-centered and collaborative at all levels. It is an app that collects daily information via push notifications not unlike social media. It is a website that displays your daily wellness to your provider and an internal system SMS (text) communication tool. The KnKt’d platform is also HIPAA compliant and encrypted when sensitive information is involved.”

Mama Tried
Just because this particular Friday requires an extra dose of musical inspiration, who better to be inspired by than Reina del Cid, singing the Merle Haggard classic, Mama Tried. Betcha didn’t think you would get ya some Merle in Friday Update, did ya?

May 6, 2020 │ 2:00 PM EST

The ongoing COVID-19 pandemic has created new challenges and aggravated existing obstacles to mental health care and well-being. Individuals, families, and communities nationwide are grappling with financial insecurity, increased difficulty accessing mental health and substance use care, and an elevated level of overall stress and anxiety. This pandemic also threatens to widen existing disparities in access, treatment, and recovery for mental illness and substance use disorders. All of this culminates into a possible “second wave” of rising mental anguish, addiction, and social dislocation. On May 6th, several national speakers will join TFAH’s President and CEO, John Auerbach, for a webinar to discuss the unique challenges for mental health in the wake of COVID-19.

COVID-19 Closures – The Impact of COVID-19 on Students Served Under IDEA
As the media and parents scramble for the latest updates on school closures due to COVID-19, there is a group of children struggling for much more. Every day seven million students are served under IDEA, which equates to about fourteen percent of total public school enrollment (NCES). Children who are in special needs programs require more than tablets and lectures.

Transforming Pediatrics to Support Population Health Policy Brief – Everyone Benefits, So All Should Pay: Pediatric Primary Care Payment Reform
Health care reform efforts are committed to promoting health and well-being and ensuring long-term population health outcomes. This is transforming how pediatric primary care providers are expected to deliver care. This policy brief explains why it is important for all payers (Medicaid and private insurers) to work together to change how they pay for this care.

A “Virtual Tampa Conference Wraparound Track” A Webinar Presenting Four Wraparound Outcomes Studies Originally Planned for the Tampa Conference
The National Wraparound Initiative and Wraparound Evaluation and Research Team invite you to join them for a webinar at which they will present Wraparound outcomes research studies planned for the 2020 Tampa Children’s Mental Health Research and Policy Conference that was sadly canceled due to COVID-19. In this 90-minute webinar, they will present findings from four studies (15 minutes each) followed by a 30-minute question and answer and discussion period.

Foster Youth & COVID-19
The Field Center for Children’s Policy, Practice & Research at the University of Pennsylvania is conducting a research study on the experiences of older youth in foster care and those who recently exited foster care during the COVID19 pandemic related to housing, food security, education, employment, finances, health, and personal connections. Participants must be between the ages of 18 and 23 and either in or aged out of foster care. Participation in this study involves taking an online survey (approximately 10 minutes to complete). All survey responses will be anonymous, and participants will have the opportunity to be entered into a drawing for a chance to win one of twelve $25 Target gift cards. For more information about this study, please contact the principal investigator, Dr. Johanna Greeson, by email at Download the flyer here.

An askable adult is one who is approachable and easy for children and youth to talk to about anything that is on their mind. Askable adults are committed to having strong, effective, and affirming relationships with youth using positive communication to develop trust and connectedness. Check out this fantastic campaign created by the Vermont Network Against Domestic and Sexual Violence. The campaign is pushing out messaging to adults about being ‘askable’ for children and youth social media posts and periodic blogs. The campaign ended last week, but the information is excellent, and the Vermont Network Against Domestic and Sexual Violence is willing to share it with you!
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About the Author

Scott Bryant-Comstock

My passion is helping to shape policy and practice in children’s mental health. 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 for the exchange of ideas on how to continually improve children’s mental health research, policy and practice.

In addition to my role with the CMHNetwork, I host The Optimistic Advocate Podcast, a weekly interview show where I explore how innovative people find ways to improve mental health for themselves, others, and the community at-large.

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