Register Today for the Feb. 18 Free Webinar

Understanding Social Media Tools & Traps:
Empowering Families to Navigate the Virtual World
Thursday, Feb. 18, from 6 – 8 p.m. ET.
You are invited to attend a special online program that gives parents, care givers and professionals information and tools young people need for safely navigating social media. “Understanding Social Media Tools and Traps: Empowering Families to Navigate the Virtual World” will be a free live webinar on Thursday, Feb. 18, from 6 – 8 p.m. ET. Presented by Spaulding for Children, Detroit PAL, and LifeChurch Auburn Hills, the webinar is sponsored by HAP – Health Alliance Plan, a Michigan-based nonprofit health plan. Those who wish to attend the webinar are asked to pre-register by clicking here.

The webinar features a live panel, composed of three experts serving in the fields of communication, mental health, and social services. The panel will discuss the impacts of social media from the mental health, ethical and civic engagement perspectives. There also will be a focus on how parents can enhance their capacity to mitigate the risks and increase responsible use of online platforms.

Panelists include Luana Marques, PhD, director, and founder of Community Psychiatry PRIDE at Massachusetts General Hospital and an Associate Professor in Psychology at Harvard Medical School; Robert Jamerson, Detroit PAL, CEO and a former PAL participant, coach and consultant; and April Dinwoodie, a communications and cause-related marketing and social media professional. The panel will be moderated by Craig Fahle, longtime broadcaster expert in government administration and currently host of the daily “Craig Fahle Show on Deadline Detroit.”

In addition to providing the latest information on the topic, the panel will provide insights child welfare professionals and families need to understand the specific impact of social media on the well-being of youth. Panelists will provide practical advice and strategies on how to harness the benefits and decrease the adverse impacts of social media. This webinar also will create an opportunity for each participant to become aware of their own family’s interaction with social media and to learn effective strategies and helpful tips so they can enjoy a healthy usage of social networking platforms.

For more information, click here or on the button below. 
Webinar Details and Registration
Make Sure Our Children Get a 'Head Start'
Head Start serves children under the age of 5 from low-income families through educational activities, health and social services, and other programs designed to prepare them for success in school.

Oakland County has programs serving children ages 0-4.  They also have a home-base program for Early Head Start for ages 0-3.
Click here for Oakland County Early Head Start.

In Macomb County the GSRP (Great Start Readiness Program) Preschool is now free for all 4-year-olds. There are openings in several locations.
Click here for GSRP Start Macomb County.

Wayne County holds several Head Start programs at various locations. For Wayne County Head Start Programs, click here.
MPLD Alumnus Develops Cultural Training Resources 

Children in transracial adoptions need special understanding to thrive, reports Monique Jackson.

Ms. Jackson serves as Adoptions Supervisor for Child Safe Michigan an affiliate of Judson Center, an organization that provides comprehensive services in Southeast Michigan for children who are impacted by abuse and neglect. She also is a member of the racial equity committee at Judson Center.
Ms. Jackson recently graduated in the second cohort of the AdoptUSKids Minority Professional Leadership Development (MPLD) program. Her MPLD project was to develop a data-driven training program for parents and agency staff to better support children who were transracially adopted.

In her professional career, Ms. Jackson observed that parents often indicated that they wished they had known how to better support their children in terms of cultural identity and heritage. For example, when a non-African American family adopts an African American child, they could better serve their child if they were trained in the child’s cultural history and heritage.

Ms. Jackson credits the level of research that was necessary to complete the MPLD program in making her successful in her new job.  Without MPLD, it would not have been possible!

“The program brought in a data consultant and I learned how to analyze and use data,” Ms. Jackson said. “That had not been in my skills set before. I also enhanced my leadership skills and developed an amazing network of professionals through MPLD.”

There are a disproportionate number of African American children in the foster care population of Michigan. Data show that there is a lack of African American foster/adoptive resource families, and many children are placed transracially.

To help foster and adoptive parents, and child welfare specialists, Ms. Jackson developed a curriculum that established Cultural Enrichment Standards that include education, embracing and engaging with the child’s heritage, and other important information and skills. The program includes training and resources to help care givers better care for children in foster care raised in transracial home settings.

After Jackson’s staff training was tested, it revealed that knowledge grew on the topics of impact that laws, beliefs, policies and practices have had on African American families; information needed to raise African American children; and opportunities and methods to celebrate and engage with African American culture.

To ensure that children’s racial/cultural/ethnic identities are nurtured by parents who adopt transracially, it is recommended that agencies develop policies, provide trainings, and facilitate parental utilization of cultural-enrichment standards.

Ms. Jackson is presenting on this topic at the Governor’s Task Force on Child Abuse and Neglect (GTFCAN) Annual Summit on February 12.

Applications for the next AdoptUSKids MPLD cohort will be posted in March 2021.
Click here to learn more about the MPLD program.
Jamie Bozarth

Spaulding's 2020 Employee of the Year
Congratulations to Ms. Jamie Bozarth on her selection by her peers to receive the 2020 Spaulding Employee of Year Award. Jamie is the Quality Improvement/Human Resource Director and she has been with Spaulding since 1993.

“I am humbled and honored to be chosen for this award,” Ms. Bozarth said. “Spaulding is a great place to work with an amazing staff that all work together.  Everyone here deserves this award, especially after the challenges we've had and currently face.”
Sending Valentine's Love to Our Foster Parents
In recognition of what some truly remarkable hearts hold, Spaulding’s foster and birth parents received special care packages this month. The Valentine's Day surprises were filled with pizza coupons, candy treats and cards to celebrate the love they show by stepping up to become foster and kinship parents. Thanks to them, older and younger hearts get to realize just how truly special they are, too. 
Happy Presidents' Day!
Happy first Presidents’ Day to President Joseph R. Biden, Jr., our nation’s 46th President!

May President Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris enjoy great success as they lead us into future with vision, determination, service and unity.

Celebrating African American History
On Feb. 10, 1976, during America’s bicentennial year, President Gerald R. Ford signed legislation designating February as Black History Month. In his remarks, President Ford thanked Dr. Carter G. Woodson, the African American historian who founded the Association for the Study of Afro-American Life and History and is remembered today as “The Father of Black History.”

"If a race has no history, if it has no worthwhile tradition, it becomes a negligible factor in the thought of the world, and it stands in danger of being exterminated," Dr. Woodson wrote in 1933.

This year, Michigan’s cultural institutions are holding special events in observance. Click on the institution's name for details online.

Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History presents a month filled with special events on African American history, including cinema and live storytelling to social events and public presentations. Activities for young people include, “Make Your Own Comix Workshop” and “Youth Speak on the Virtual Stage.” The Wright also presents many special programs for youths and adults, including "Excellence in Black Cinema Project" and "In Vogue: The Harlem Renaissance." 

Detroit Historical Museum is hosting an event highlighting African American entrepreneurs in the urban agriculture movement, "Growing Where We're Planted," as well as several special exhibits and programs during February. For details, click here.

Underground Railroad Living Museum at the Historic First Congregational Church of Detroit presents the “Flight to Freedom Tour.” The program discusses the church and our community’s role in the Underground Railroad, a secret organization that helped men, women and children escape slavery in the Southern United States to freedom in Canada.

Detroit Institute of Arts, the first museum to establish a curatorial department devoted to African American art, is hosting an exhibition of African American art from private collections through mid-March. 

Many resources also are online,
please click here to learn more about African American History Month / Black History Month.
Watching a Bill Become Law

Spaulding Believes "Every Child Deserves a Family"
Spaulding supports the Every Child Deserves a Family Act (ECDF), a bill under consideration by Congress in Washington, D.C.

Proponents of the legislation report “ECDF would prohibit federally-funded child welfare service providers from discriminating against children, families, and individuals because of their religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, and marital status. It also ensures that children and youth in foster care receive the identity-affirming, culturally competent care they deserve.”

ECDF and the Campaign’s 
38 transition recommendations to the Biden/Harris administration and to Congress would dramatically improve foster care and adoption for LGBTQ+, Two Spirit and BIPOC families, children, and kin, for those with disabilities, and for those with intersectional identities.

The bill was introduced in 2019 by the late Rep. John Lewis (D-GA) and Rep. Jenniffer González-Colón (R-PR) in the U.S. House of Representatives, and in the U.S. Senate by Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY).
Click here to learn more.
StoryTime: Books for February
Storytime with Miss Katie continues Sunday nights at 7 p.m., webstreamed on Facebook. February books include:
  • Feb. 14 – Harvey the Heart had too Many Farts by Jane Bexley
  • Feb. 21 – I am Rosa Parks by Brad Meltzer
  • Feb. 28 – What Color is my World? The Lost History of African American Inventors by Kareem Abdul-Jabbar
Other outstanding books for readers during Black History Month:
  • Change Sings by Amanda Gorman
  • A Promised Land by Barack Obama
  • Just as I Am by Cicely Tyson
If you would like to become a sponsor and purchase books for our monthly contest for StoryTime, please contact us:

Change a child's life, become a foster parent!

Click to learn more.


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In partnership with families, communities, organizations, states and the nation, Spaulding for Children’s mission is to assure that all children grow up in safe, permanent families and have the help they need to be successful in life.

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