Child welfare is beginning to experience a transformational shift in approach and thinking – from a reactive or remedial stance to a proactive, preventative stance. There is a national movement currently to rethink child welfare by creating the conditions for strong, thriving families where children are free from harm.
In over 30 years of working with adult and child victims of sexual trauma, six of which were spent as a director in a rape crisis center, I witnessed the impact of sexual assault on the victim as well as their family, friends and community. There is never a single victim of such an unspeakable trauma.
Child victims of abuse experience unspeakable trauma, loss and disruption and are often misunderstood by professionals and the community at large. These children need advocates and professionals who practice with empathy and understanding.
Compassionate, thoughtful and insanely knowledgeable — as I’ve gotten to know her over the last six months, this is how I would describe Shadell Quinones, Manager of Adoption Services for Chester County (PA) Department of Children, Youth and Families for the past ten years.
Voce’s second Training for Adoption Competency class is forming, and the deadline for clinicians to apply is April 15. TAC is a nationally recognized, evidence-based training ensuring clinicians provide the support adoptive children and their families need to thrive.
Serial entrepreneur and founder of Wolfe, LLC, Jason Wolfe’s mind is arguably wired for systems and technology. His heart, however, is wired for children. Jason is guiding Voce, a change agent and pioneer in best case practice in adoption and permanency, in developing a software solution to transform and advance adoption practice.
A little over a year ago, I pulled up to the bustling White Rose Grill in York County for a lunch appointment with local non-profit leader who I was meeting for the first time. I was feeling a little nervous, hoping I’d be able to pick Rick Azzaro, Executive Director of Voce, out of the crowd. We connected and Rick’s positive energy and kindness quickly put me at ease. With a lingering sense of comfort and belonging, my relationship with Voce began that day.
Family Design Resources announced a transformation to bring its multidisciplinary expertise to public and private human services agencies throughout the country. Now known as Voce (pronounced vō-chāy, which means voice), the organization offers consultation and training to human services agencies throughout the country in the areas of trauma and loss, adoption and permanency, diversity and inclusion, and individual and family well-being.
In 2012, we were a happy family of five. My husband, Joe, and I were the parents of three beautiful children, and we had decided our family was complete after the birth of our youngest daughter, Hannah. Everything was great as it was. Our kids were involved in sports and school and growing fast.
In this exclusive interview, Deborah Wilson Gadsden, Voce training specialist and author of A Changing Perspective on Child Welfare: From Teen Mom to Seasoned Professional, talks about the forces that propelled her to share her account of growing up and growing in the social work field with a national audience of social workers. Deborah’s writing captures her humility, insights, wisdom and grace spanning nearly five decades of service to the child welfare field.
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