October 2009


If a child is to keep alive his inborn sense of wonder without any such gift from the fairies, he needs the companionship of at least one adult who can share it, rediscovering with him the joy, excitement and mystery of the world we live in.
–Rachel Carson


Announcements

Minnesota Fathers & Families Network (MFFN) Seeks New Board Candidates

MFFN is now accepting self-nominations from individuals interested in serving on their statewide leadership team. Self-nominations are due November 3, 2009. Candidates may self-nominate by visiting www.mnfathers.org.


Research

Predictors Of Inconsistent Condom Use Among Adolescent Mothers

A study in Texas of over 600 participants examined condom use in teen mothers 6 and 12 months after giving birth. Compared with teen mothers who always used condoms, those who never or only sometimes used them 12 months following birth of their babies were more likely to be white or Hispanic, be pregnant or trying to get pregnant, have a partner that refused to wear a condom and have experienced intimate partner violence. Additional risk factors were condom use at 6 months following birth was less than always, not attending religious services regularly and high monitoring by their own mothers. The study suggests that multilevel interventions are needed to promote safer sexual practices among young mothers.


Resources


Resource Site: Maternal Child Health Updates Website

The Center for Leadership Education in Maternal and Child Public Health at the University of Minnesota is pleased to present their new website! You can expect the same reliable information and connections to local, national and global MCH resources, but with a new twist. View informing and entertaining videos and podcasts from the MCH world on their "multimedia" page, or peruse their current and past issues of Healthy Generations. Check out proceedings from past conferences or workshops on the "resources" page or learn more about MCH priority populations and find out more about relevant organizations and data sources on the "about us" page. Visit MCH at www.epi.umn.edu to start exploring now.


Grad Nation: A Guidebook to Help Communities Tackle the Dropout Crisis

This guidebook (PDF) seeks to provide a roadmap for communities wishing to increase the number of their youth who graduate from high school. The report presents recent relevant research, discusses best practices and instructs communities in the use of tools they can employ to prevent students from dropping out of school.


Dropout Prevention

This practice guide (PDF) from the Institute of Education Sciences (IES) seeks to help state policymakers and school- and district-level administrators implement effective school dropout prevention interventions. The report presents multiple recommendations for how to prevent students from dropping out. At the core of the recommendations are a set of dropout prevention strategies that have been evaluated using methods that meet the What Works Clearinghouse evidence standards and which have been found to have a positive impact on school achievement outcomes. The strength of the evidence for each strategy is provided within the report as well as a description of the strategy.


Do You Have Clients/Students who are Overly Punitive in Response to Normal Toddler Behavior?

Click on this link to see a short video clip from Zero to Three® on a toddler's persistence in trying to touch a forbidden object and how his mom uses distraction effectively. Questions are also listed to help frame the discussion and educate your clients/students about reasons for seemingly difficult toddler behaviors and non-punitive behavior management techniques.


Activities with Babies and Toddlers (from Zero to Three®)

Birth to 12 Months:
On Your Feet. Gather several pieces of material with different textures. Hold baby upright (with hands under your baby's arms) with his feet touching one of the fabrics. Try a few different fabrics to see which textures he prefers. Sensory games like this enhance your baby's tactile and body awareness.

12 to 24 Months:
Freeze! Toddlers love freeze dancing. Play music and encourage your child to dance or move in whatever way he likes. Then instruct him to stop when the music ends. This kind of activity encourages listening skills and self-regulation as he practices stopping and starting (this is a very useful skill for when he goes to school and has to follow a lot of directions!).

24 to 36 Months:
Instant Authors. Staple five or six pieces of paper together. Ask your child to tell you a story as you write the sentences down on each page. Your child can then draw in the "illustrations." This activity helps your child develop logical thinking as he weaves a story. To guide him, ask, "What happens next?"


Upcoming MOAPPP Trainings

October 22, 27, 30 & November 5, 2009
We Can Parent Together
Tools for Engaging Fathers, Mothers and Others

October 22-Owatonna
October 27-Twin Cities Metro Area
October 30-Little Falls
November 5-Redwood Falls

All workshops from 10:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m.

When parents are consistent and support each other in the task of parenting, children benefit. This workshop presents the basics and benefits of co-parenting, and offers strategies and best practices to utilize in supporting any family working to raise children in a healthy, safe environment. Specific focus will be given to the unique challenges of divorcing and never-married parents, adolescent parents, or those with substance abuse / dependence-related concerns. This workshop is designed for professionals working with families.

Objectives:

  • Understand the co-parenting relationship and how it differs from the couple relationship
  • Learn how to implement strategies and tools to help parents improve their co-parenting relationship
  • Learn how to talk about the importance of fathers and how to support mothers in engaging fathers
  • Understand the special needs of teen parents
  • Assist in empowering parents with prevention strategies and tools specific to substance abuse and dependence
  • Understand how all the strategies presented can help prevent child abuse and neglect before it happens
  • Participate in the unveiling of our new web-based co-parenting toolkit for professionals and parents.

Follow this link to register. View the event brochure (PDF).

Presented by Minnesota Fathers & Families Network, Prevent Child Abuse Minnesota, Minnesota Prevention Resource Center, Minnesota Organization on Adolescent Pregnancy, Prevention and Parenting, University of Minnesota Extension and Department of Human Services Children's Trust Fund.


November 4, 2009
Two Trainings: Meeting the Unique Needs of Adolescent Mothers & Fathers and Practical Tips for Working with Teen Moms & Dads

Both trainings on Wednesday, November 4 in Redwood Falls.


Meeting the Unique Needs of Adolescent Mothers & Fathers

9:00 a.m. - 2:00 p.m.
Pizza Ranch
1360 East Bridge Street, Redwood Falls

Includes light continental breakfast and lunch

Three common goals of adolescent parent programs are to facilitate long-term self-sufficiency, build parenting capacity and ensure the healthy growth and development of the children born to young parents. This workshop, for professionals new to adolescent parent work, examines national and state data related to adolescent parents; systems that impact adolescent parents; the strengths and opportunities, as well as the challenges young parents bring to their new role; current research on best practices for working with adolescent parents; and the role every provider can play in enhancing the lives of these young families.


Practical Tips for Working with Teen Moms & Dads

2:15 p.m. - 4:15 p.m.
Pizza Ranch
1360 East Bridge Street, Redwood Falls

Working with adolescent parents can be both rewarding and challenging. Adults may find themselves unclear how to communicate concepts to young parents in a way that is meaningful and produces results. This workshop provides guidelines for how to develop activities and communicate with youth along with several specific take-away ideas and activities.

Cost for both trainings: $50 MOAPPP members/$85 non-members
Cost for Meeting the Unique Needs training: $35 MOAPPP members/$70 non-members
Cost for Practical Tips: $25 MOAPPP members/$60 non-members

For more information and to register for one or both of these trainings, see the flyer and registration form (PDF). Registration scholarships are available. Questions? Contact Sue at 651 644-1447 x15 or sue@moappp.org.


Other Upcoming Trainings

October 20, 2009
Bridge To Benefits Conference

This conference will provide an opportunity for Bridge to Benefits partners from Minnesota, Montana, North Dakota and South Dakota to learn about B2B work support programs, recent updates to the B2B project, promising B2B practices, and more. In addition to current partners and funders, organizations that are new to Bridge to Benefits are encouraged to attend. Registration is free and limited! For more information and to register, visit mn.bridgetobenefits.org.


October 21, November 11 & 18, December 2 & 16
Cultural Proficiency Workshops: Introduction to Somali, Latino and Hmong Cultures

In each of these workshops, you will learn the basics of each culture's history, family systems, beliefs and practices; become more confident in your interactions with other cultures; learn how to reach out and engage members of other cultures and more. For more information and to register, visit www.neighb.org.


October 26, 2009
Minnesota Breastfeeding Coalition Meeting

9:00 a.m. - 3:30 p.m. (tentative)
St. Cloud Public Library
1300 West St. Germain St., St. Cloud

Join this statewide meeting to:

  • network with other breastfeeding advocates;
  • learn about the Minnesota Breastfeeding Coalition;
  • discover what local coalitions are doing in their communities;
  • and hear plans for the Minnesota Breastfeeding Coalition's project for 2010.

Please email Linda Dech, ldech@charter.net, for more information.


October 30, 2009
Speed Networking Event

7:30 - 9:00 a.m.
Brookdale Library
6125 Shingle Creek Parkway, Brooklyn Center

You will learn about what the "new normal" looks like for professionals working with teen parents, their babies and families. Experts in six topic areas will use a "Speed Networking" format to quickly share information about the changes in programs or services that affect teen parents and their children in the following areas:

  • Housing
  • Employment
  • Economic Assistance
  • Childcare
  • Education
  • Health Support

You will have the opportunity to participate in four areas of discussion and will make your choices on the day of the event. Due to the format for this event, space is limited. Register with your name and phone number before October 27 by calling the Northwest Teen Parent Connection at 763-391-7253 or email NWHFSC@district279.org.


November 5, 2009
Mandated Reporter Training On Child Protection

Afternoon Session: 1:30 - 4:00 p.m.
Evening Session: 6:30 - 9:00 p.m.
Rosemount Community Center Auditorium, 13885 South Robert Trail, Rosemount

Presented by the Dakota County Child Protection Team and the Child Abuse Prevention Council of Dakota County, this training will cover:

  • legal requirements of a mandated reporter
  • definition of neglect/abuse
  • process of making a child protection report to intake screeners
  • response of child protection assessment social worker to the reporter
  • court process after a report is received and more.

The session meets credit requirements for Minnesota Board of Social Work and Minnesota Board of Nursing. For all others, certificates for 2.5 Contact Hours will be given out. For more information and to register, contact amanda.lorenz@co.dakota.mn.us. This training is free but RSVPs are requested.


November 17, 2009
Emerging Research For Abuse Prevention: Statewide Videoconference Sites

1:30 - 4:00 p.m.

This is the fourth in a series of four videoconference events broadcast around the state designed to stimulate conversation, encourage collaboration and engage all communities in the protective factors to prevent child abuse and neglect. This videoconference covers the topic of Emerging Research and Messages, and will include a presentation from Jeff Linkenbach, Ed.D. The videoconference is free, but seating is limited. To register, click here.


January 13-15, 2010
Statewide Conference: Engaging Fathers; Strengthening Families

Arrowwood Resort, Alexandria

Minnesota Fathers & Families Network is joining together with the Strong Foundations Conference to offer a joint conference, "Strong Foundations & Fatherhood Summit." The 2010 conference theme, "Engaging Fathers: Strengthening Families," reflects the integral role that fathers play in the healthy development of young children. The joint conference is designed for professionals in public health, health care, social work/mental health, child care, early childhood education, ECFE, ECSE, School Readiness, Early Head Start, child abuse prevention, home visiting, parenting education, family law, child support and those who work with refugee and immigrant communities, the field of fatherhood and other helping professions. Keynote presenters will include: Dr. James McHale, Chair of the Department of Psychology at the University of South Florida and author of Charting the Bumpy Road of Coparenthood; Dr. Kyle Pruett, Clinical Professor of Child Psychiatry at Yale School of Medicine and author of Fatherneed; and Vicki Turetsky, Commissioner, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office of Child Support Enforcement. Click here for more information.


Funding Opportunities

Request For Proposals For Research and Demonstration Projects

The National Quality Improvement Center on Early Childhood (QIC-EC) has released a Request for Proposals for Research and Demonstration (R&D) projects. Interested parties are invited to submit proposals to implement and rigorously evaluate approaches to prevent child maltreatment and to promote family strengths and optimal development among infants and young children (birth-5) who are at high-risk for abuse, neglect and abandonment, including those impacted by substance abuse and/or HIV/AIDS, and for whom there is no substantiated Child Protective Services report. The QIC-EC will fund three to five grants with a maximum funding per award of $1,240,000 for a 40-month grant period (March 1, 2010 - June 30, 2013). A Letter of Interest must be submitted by November 9, 2009. The detailed Request for Proposals is available at www.qic-ec.org.



For more resources and information about adolescent parents, visit the Adolescent Parent Program page on the MOAPPP website.