Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Real Life Tales of Advocacy











Though we at GDNNOP do not claim to be child advocates, we would like to take a moment to acknowledge we are 100% in favor of advocacy. As a way of honoring that, and a way to steer from negativity for a moment, let's take a moment to honor the real life advocates and/or people you know who make a difference. No sarcasm please, we want to keep this positive.

17 comments:

iluvmyhubby! said...

Although my husband doesn't read this blog, he has worked for CPS for over 10 years now. He's involved in a gang task force locally. He and a few co-workers also created a group for families that was intended to keep those families together and help them work out their issues. He and his co-workers were asked to present this group at a state-wide convention and it was adopted by a few counties with great success.

We can be at a resturant and a client will come up and talk to him. It might be a parent, foster parent or a kid who he used to be involved with. He's a great guy.

**not posting w/ my usual name, sorry**

Anonymous said...

My sister is a school nurse for the Los Angeles Unified School District. I have heard stories from her that I can not believe. These nurses work day in and day out as advocates for these children. They truly know what child abuse is and strive to make sure that the kids receive the care they deserve.

nomoredrama said...

A local mental health agency that works mostly with low-income children who have behavioral/psychological difficulties was having trouble helping these kids do things kids normally do. Thinks like sports, dance class, gymnastics...all the things many of us take for granted are inaccessible to these kids due to finances and lack of transportation to and from.

The workers at this agency decided to do a play for the kids. The play was to serve a social skills group/community integration activity. Some of the children had very challenging behaviors. Some were at risk for out of home placement. All came (with transportation assistance from the workers), learned their lines, and became comfortable performing.

In the few months that the kids were involved with the play, there was a major decrease in their behaviors. Kid's were involved in every aspect of the show from set design, flyer design and more. When they performed the show, the look of pride and joy on their faces was all the thanks these workers needed. 5 months of rehearsing and participating in a play raised these kids self-esteem more than years of therapy would.

This group of workers went above and beyond in meeting the needs of the kids they serve....and these kid's lives will be touched forever because of it.

Anonymous said...

"Bob" (name changed) is an educational advocate who has worked with hundreds of children that have special education needs. Through his advocacy, so many children are receiving the free and appropriate public education that they are entitled to.

To top it off, even though Bob is busy with the many families he helps, he also manages to find the time to do things like attend sporting events and school performances.

HE is truly a class act.

August 26, 2008 10:03 PM

Guinevere said...

My friend is just finishing a graduate program to be a school psychologist, and I honor her and all the other people who do work that I don't think I could do. She is mostly going to be in the field of educational testing, but in her internships has already encountered a number of troubled children (a girl whose mother was murdered, for example), and has done her best to help them. I really admire people who do this work, because it seems like it would be really emotionally tough. My thanks go out to all of them.

Anonymous said...

I have a family member who has advocated as an unpaid volunteer for adults who were sexually abused as children by clergy. For the last 7 years, she has helped run a monthly support group and an internet discussion group.

MCB said...

A friend of mine has a daughter who just graduated with a PSY degree and is working with children and teens who are sent to the center she works for with behavior issues. These are kids yanked from homes where they have been abused and kids who are one step from jail for being the abuser. Kids who were never taught boundaries, sexually. She has to watch what words she uses, how she dresses in front of them and every day, comes home tense, stressed and upset because a child she worked with has gotten his or herself back into trouble after going through the program and is now headed to jail. Not only is it a difficult job, it is one with a high turnover. The pay is bad, the hours are bad, the kids break your heart and the parents piss you off. She sees what true abusive parents and damaged children are, every single day.

Anonymous said...

I have a brother who is a police officer. I feel most police officers are advocates for children but he goes above and beyond. He will follow up with every situation that he as an officer is involved with. Makes returns visits to the home months later to see if the child is ok. He contacts various agencies that he is aware of to see how they can help the child. Recently, he became a Big Brother. He knows how I feel about him but I thought I would recognize him here and send him a link so he can read it. The city of Detroit is a better place because of people like him.

Anonymous said...

I'd like to honor the individuals who work as advocates for the aging population. So often, elders become victims of abuse, even and the hands of their own family. To people who recognize this need and work with this population deserve recognition.

MomOfOne said...

My hubby, like most police officers, have a sometimes thankless job. They see the worst of everyday life which can leave many jaded. Besides attempting to keep our streets safe, they are comforting children and elderly alike.

So, I have a tiny request that will go a long way in each of your cities/towns. When you see an officer, say "thank you." They don't hear it that often and believe me, it will brighten their day!

anya said...

MomOfOne said...
"So, I have a tiny request that will go a long way in each of your cities/towns. When you see an officer, say "thank you." They don't hear it that often and believe me, it will brighten their day!"


********************************

You are absolutely right and I'll remember to say "thank you" the next time I encounter an officer.

I am not an advocate myself in any sense, but my aunt has worked in mental health for 20+ years. Like others, I have heard the horror stories of many of their abusive childhoods at the hands of parents or caregivers with substance abuse and/or mental health issues themselves. Unfortunately, it seems many times these patterns repeat generation after generation.

It makes me very grateful for my just slightly dysfunctional upbringing!

Anonymous said...

I am a teacher. I admit. I do my job but at the end of the day I have my own kids to go home to. But I would like to recognize a teacher who I work with. He stays for hours after school and tutors math. He started a Math club and sometimes they meet on Saturdays. But he goes beyond this. He takes a real interest in the kids and really listens to what they have to say. If he feels there are any problems or concerns he deals with it immediately.

nomoredrama said...

I was fortunate enough to have a few wonderful teachers in my life. Definitely Kudos to teachers...

Anonymous said...

I think we often take for granted that parents are in the field of "advocacy" every day. They push their kids to be their bests and help them navigate this crazy world. Parents deserve a shout out!

Guinevere said...

anon 8:24, don't discount your own contribution. Teachers do a hard job and get flak from parents (often) and are underpaid. You probably have more of a positive impact on your students' lives than you recognize. So while you are recognizing your colleague, give yourself a pat on the back, too!

anya said...

Anonymous said...
"I think we often take for granted that parents are in the field of "advocacy" every day. They push their kids to be their bests and help them navigate this crazy world. Parents deserve a shout out!"


Absolutely. Excellent point. And to be realistic, what better outlet is there for advocacy than one's own child/children (or if you don't have children, the children in your family or daily life). This is where we can (hopefully) achieve the greatest impact in contributing to a healthy society.

Actually, I think the Gosselins are a good example of this. Whether we agree with every decision they make or not, it is clear their family life is their number one priority. I have admiration for that.

Anonymous said...

I am not a social worker but I have worked closely with them and that is a thankless job. Many social workers go above and beyond and at the end of the day go home knowing that there was not much control over some situations. Sometimes they are placed in questionable situations. Kudos to them.