UCS’ Youth & Family Services Division staff, along with the UCS supported group Teens 4 Change, served as faculty at the 2014 Georgetown University Training Institute on “Improving Children’s Mental Health Care in an Era of Change, Challenge, and Innovation: The Role of the System of Care Approach,” in Washington, D.C. from July 16th to the 20th.
UCS Director of Youth & Family Services Lorna Mattern, and Teens 4 Change group leader Katrina Hollis, presented at the institute on youth leadership development. They specifically discussed how the Youth in Transition (YIT) program was started and implemented with great success in Bennington. The funding for YIT program comes from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA).
“We were able to share with a national audience the accomplishments of the Teens 4 Change program,” said Mattern. “Bennington was chosen to participate due to our strong youth leadership and development work.”
UCS sent 10 individuals to the institute including 4 youth, 4 staff, and 2 parent chaperones. The learning opportunity provided by the institute had a positive impact on all attendees, especially the youth and parents.
“The youth learned even more about their ability to become leaders, and the parents recognized the importance of becoming advocates themselves. It’s very inspiring to know that a conference like this allows people to recognize they have the ability to change their lives,” said Mattern.
This was the 15th biennial training institute at Georgetown University.