CONCERNED PERSONS FOR ADOPTION (CPFA)
7TH ANNUAL MINI CONFERENCE
WORKSHOP DESCRIPTIONS
October 13, 2018

9:00 am – 2:00 pm

(Doors open at 8:30 am)

STAYING THE COURSE: THE IMPORTANCE OF EMOTIONAL REGULATION FOR ADOPTIVE AND FOSTER FAMILIES - Adult Workshop

Sharon Sorrentino-O’Keefe, Ph.D and John O’Keefe will provide information on the importance of emotional regulation for all members of the adoptive or foster family; causes of dysregulations, and a variety of tools and strategies for fostering emotional regulation and building tools for self-regulation. 
 
THE ADOPTED CHILD’S JOURNEY, QUESTIONS ALONG THE WAY - Adult Workshop
Rebecca Gallese, LCSW from the NJ Adoption Resource Clearing House (NJ ARCH), will present. Based on the on the book “Twenty Things Adopted Kids Wish Their Adoptive Parents Knew” by Sherri Eldridge, this workshop will look to address issues that may arise for our adopted children including loss, grief, triggers and reminders, questions about their history, abandonment/rejection and feeling different.   Some of the discussion points from the kids workshop, “I Wish My Parents Understood” for ages 10-13 may be shared with the parents in this session. Information and resources will be provided.

PAWSITIVE INVOLVEMENT WITH ANIMALS – Adult Workshop

This informational session will involve talking about the value of interacting with animals. Pet therapy or involvement with animals can help with self-esteem, sense of purpose and responsibility and self-regulation. Prof. Jennifer George, a Professor at Rutgers and a practicing Occupational Therapist, will provide resources on how to get involved with animals at multiple levels within the community and at home and how it can benefit your child and family.

PAWSITIVE INVOLVEMENT WITH ANIMALS  - Two ½ hour Youth Workshops (7-9) and (10-13), respectively.  This 30-minute session will encompass learning how to interact and communicate safely with dogs and the benefit of animals in our lives. This will be hands-on learning session and the children will have an opportunity to practice these skills with two registered therapy dogs, Harley and Sasha.

Get your child’s Brain charged and ready! Using A Mind Body approach – Adult Workshop

All children’s brains develop from the “Bottom up”.  This progression allows children to process  trauma. Before the child can regulate emotion and execute cognitive skills the lower brain needs to be activated. Children who have experienced trauma may have missed making the connections of the lower brain.  Using mindful movement, sensory tools, and breathing, Barbara Neiman, Occupational Therapist, will teach us quick interventions to get  your children's  brain “online” and capable to regulate emotion, use cognitive skills and ultimately explore their identity.

Empowering the Adopted Child and Teen, Youth, workshop 10-13

You feel empowered and confident when your brain and body work together. Barbara Neiman, Occupational Therapist will lead the group in fun, interactive activities that help our brain and body using movement, communication, mindful meditation and breathing to decrease stress, feel safe and manage emotions. 

CAN WE TALK?” – Parents Only Discussion – Adult Workshop
Feeling overwhelmed by parenting? Are you facing challenging behavior from your child? Don’t know where to turn? How to deal with the problems? Embarrassed to mention anything to your social worker?  Come listen, ask and share your thoughts, concerns and more with experienced adoptive parents during this “for parents only- no professionals invited” chat. 

I WISH MY PARENTS UNDERSTOOD”-Kid’s Thoughts on Adoption – Youth workshop, 10-13
Based on the book, “Twenty Things Adopted Kids Wish Their Adoptive Parents Knew” by Sherri Eldridge, Rebecca Gallese, LCSW, will lead this workshop for youth to discuss their thoughts on loss, triggers, and questions about their history, feeling different and more. 

SELF-ESTEEM BOOST – Youth workshop, ages 7-9

This workshop led by Cynthia Lapidus, CSW, BSW, of New Jersey Adoption Resource Clearing House, a Program of Children’s Aid and Family Services will give children a much needed chance to see their own importance and self-worth through group discussion and crafts. One of the crafts will include  personalizing a pretend “license plate” where each child can emphasize their own individual and unique traits and strengths.  

Yes, And...Improv builds strong minds! - Two ½ hour Youth Workshops (7-9) and (10-13), respectively
In a world where we hear no all the time, wouldn't it be great to hear yes! The “yes, and” mantra of improvisation can help manage stressful situations and refocus our negative responses into energetic, positive ones.  In this interactive and liberating workshop, led by CPFA volunteer, Carolyn Bosa, youth will build confidence, create, listen, think, respect and have fun using the basic tools of improvisational theater.

FUN AND GAMES: The children will have an opportunity to socialize, play games and be creative.

PIZZA LUNCH: Both the children and the adults have an opportunity to network and socialize during our pizza lunch. We ask for a donation of $1 per slice.

For questions, please contact Carolyn Bosa at ckbosa@comcast.net.