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Darla L. Henry Stephanie Hodge Wolfe. Interpret how grief and loss impact the success of a FGC Explain how the 3-5-7 Model can support the preparation.

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Presentation on theme: "Darla L. Henry Stephanie Hodge Wolfe. Interpret how grief and loss impact the success of a FGC Explain how the 3-5-7 Model can support the preparation."— Presentation transcript:

1 Darla L. Henry Stephanie Hodge Wolfe

2 Interpret how grief and loss impact the success of a FGC Explain how the Model can support the preparation of FGC participants, including children Describe how the Model can enhance engagement of FGC participants

3 Family Group Decision Making Family Development Credentialing Family Finding a process that invites family members to make decisions for their children credentialing program for the skills needed to provide strength-based family support to families a set of strategies used to connect children with relatives who can give them a sense of connectedness and permanency

4 To truly engage families we need to understand where they have been, where they are, and where they are going

5 T he FGC process is often emotionally intense and anxiety-ridden Separation and loss are common themes Schmid, Harris, Hassabu, and Barnwell (2007)

6 Why pay attention to loss? Issues of grief and loss can have a substantial impact on the process If losses are acknowledged and recognized, the trust, security, and openness needed for a successful conference will be more readily achieved

7 Grief and Loss in FGC Using Family Group Conferencing in the Context of Death and Dying (Schmid, Harris, Hassabu, and Barnwell, 2007) –Issue was not previously addressed in conferencing or bereavement literature But we know, loss is about more than death…

8 Pervasive and painful feelings of loss Threats to: –Self-Esteem –Parental and Family Identity –Sense of Belonging/togetherness –Security Lacking of a sense of purpose Criticism and Blame Field Guide to Child Welfare: Placement and Permanence, Child Welfare League of America, 1998

9 Helplessness/frustration/confusion Concern (fear) for both the child and the parent Embarrassment/Shame/Guilt Anger/Resentment Realignment of Relationships

10 Themes of Loss (for Families with Child Welfare System Involvement) Loss of control Loss of dignity Loss of security Loss of identity Loss of belongingness in family

11 GRIEF Important to understand these issues as you prepare family for FGC The Model can help coordinators prepare participants who are experiencing losses

12 BEST PRACTICE GUIDE that FRAMES WORK of: –RECONCILING LOSSES –REBUILDING RELATIONSHIPS through PAST & CURRENT ATTACHMENTS –ENCOURAGING PERMANENCY through: CLAIMING ACTIVITIES by FAMILIES GRIEF WORK of both children and families as they move towards feelings of BELONGINGNESS PROVIDES a COMMON LANGUAGE for the WORK of GRIEF and RELATIONSHIP BUILDING

13 CORE WORK LOSS –Repeated, profound losses SAFETY –Grieving occurs through relationships of perceptual safety ATTACHMENTS/RELATIONSHIPS –Who will help me with the pain of loss? –Who will I belong to in a secure relationship?

14 OUTCOMES 1.ENCOURAGE EXPRESSION of FEELINGS 2.EMBRACE PAST LIFE EVENTS, RELATIONSHIPS, CULTURE 3.CLARIFY CONFUSIONS, QUESTIONS 4.ESTABLISH SUPPORTIVE CONNECTIONS 5.VISUALIZE POSITIVE FUTURE

15 ENCOURAGE EXPRESSION of FEELINGS The voicing of feelings and emotions supports the healing process Explore topics of interest to them- –Start where child/youth/family is Empowerment results from feelings being honored Strengths are recognized

16 EXPLORE the PAST Claiming history encourages identity development by filling holes of lost self Recognizes all events in one’s life Honors heritage/culture/ethnicity Encourages making connections and the building of relationships through repeating the attachment process

17 CLARIFY CONFUSIONS & QUESTIONS Limited understanding of life events Information is incomplete, missing, unknown Model: – provides opportunity for truthful information; thereby opening activities to improve self esteem –Increases capacity to reconcile previous relationships and form new relationships

18 ESTABLISH SUPPORTIVE CONNECTIONS Have lost many relationships in lives Surfaces issues that have stood in way of building relationships Identifies people who were part of their past to re-establish possible connections Builds web of supportive connections Builds relationships through cycling of attachment process

19 VISUALIZE POSITIVE FUTURE Past relationships are woven into current relationships Meaning is given to lost relationships so family can move on Trust develops in safe/secure environment; beginning of journey to belonging Achieves support for goals of reunification, adoption, kinship care, legal custodianship Future is “visible”

20 MODEL TASKS: Clarification Integration Actualization CONCEPTUAL QUESTIONS: Who am I? What Happened to me? Where am I going? How will get there? When will I know I belong? SKILL ELEMENTS: Engagement ListeningTruthfulness Validation Creating safety Bringing the past forward Pain work is the process

21 TASKS of WORK CLARIFICATION: –reasons family/child are provided services –life events of child and family INTEGRATION: –Identify all family relationships –Recognize families memberships and loyalties ACTUALIZATION: –visualize permanent relationships, –Belongingness/security with one family

22 Questions Conceptual Questions Identity Who Am I?………………………Identity Loss What Happened To Me?………Loss Attachment Where Am I Going?……………Attachment Relationships How Will I Get There?………….Relationships Claiming/Safety When Will I Know I belong?... Claiming/Safety

23 Proprietary: Model LLC ritical Elements 7 Critical Elements ENGAGING the child/youth… LISTENING to the child/youth’s words… BEING BRIEF, when you speak … AFFIRMING the child/youth and their STORY … Creating a SAFE SPACE for the work… BRING ING the PAST into the PRESENT… RECOGNIZING that PAINFUL FEELINGS are REFLECTED in BEHAVIORS

24 CLARIFICATION CLARIFICATION WORK: Answering questions 1 & 2 and using the 7 skills TOOLS LIFE BOOK LOSS/LIFE LINE LOSS HISTORY CHART To GRIEVE LOSSES ESTABLISH/AFFIRM IDENTITY EXPLORE FEELINGS

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26 CHILD/FAMILY LOSS/LIFE LINE

27 INTEGRATION work: Answering questions 1-4 and using the 7 skills To RECOGNIZE & IDENTIFY FAMILY ATTACHMENTS AND MEMBERSHIPS EXPLORE LOYALTY AND STRENGTHS WITHIN FAMILY Tools LIFE BOOK ( CON’T ) COLLAGES PUZZLES

28 ATTACHMENT CYCLE Vera Fahlberg Behavior stops or changes Physical or Psychological Need Behavioral Response Satisfaction Of Need SECURITY TRUST ATTACHMENT CONTINUITY STABILITY MUTUALITY Hess

29 ACTUALIZATION work: answering all questions and using all skills TOOLS LIFE BOOK (CON’T) REMEMBERED PEOPLE CHART FAMILY ACTIVITIES To VISUALIZE BELONGINGNESS within “FAMILY”; SAFETY and CLAIMING RECONCILIATION/ ACCEPTANCE of PAST EVENTS; CRISIS WORK FOCUS ON FUTURE

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31 Longing For: Be Loved, Cared for, Valued, Important

32  Clarification (preparing for the meeting)  Integration (joining of strengths)  Actualization (the plan is developed and implemented)

33 Who am I?  Unite participants as people who love and care for the child-give back family identity What happened to me?  Sharing of information Where am I going?  Purpose of the conference How will I get there?  By using the family’s strengths When will I know I belong?  The Family Plan

34 FGC can be therapeutic, but remember… …the primary purpose of the FGC is to address a planning question Schmid, Harris, Hassabu, and Barnwell (2007)

35  Allow expression and exploration of feelings of shame, stigma, anger, blame  Keep focus on planning  Examine feelings about loss only to the extent it impacts the conference  Prepare participants for expressions of grief  “acting out”, depression  Explore whether intense emotions are impacting attendance Schmid, Harris, Hassabu, and Barnwell (2007)

36 Recognize the losses Maintain the focus

37 References Henry, D. L. (2005) Model: Preparing children for permanency. Children and Youth Services Review, 27, Rycus, J. & Hughes, R. (1998). Field Guide to Child Welfare: Placement and Permanence, CWLA Press: Washington D.C. Schmid, J., Harris, C., Hassabu, I., & Barnwell, L. (2007). Using family group conferencing in the context of death and dying. Protecting Children, 22,

38 For more information Darla L. Henry Stephanie Hodge Wolfe


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