Family Preservation Conference

On October 22nd & 23rd, Coastal Horizons Center in Wilmington, NC hosted a virtual “Intensive Family Preservation Services Conference”.  Several speakers from various organizations spoke on topics related to family preservation.  Approximately 140 people attended, mostly within North Carolina.  The presentations were very informative and valuable, and here are some of the highlights:

“The Intersection of Racial Injustice and Family Preservation”

Dr. Mit Joyner, DPS, MSW, BSW, LCSW, NASW President

This presentation focused on critical multiculturalism, intersectionality and ethics.

Challenges and complexities of culturally-competent practice in the current sociopolitical context were examined, and leadership and competency skills essential to successful interventions with individuals, families, and communities were identified. Discussion included the implications of ethics and values, self-awareness, professional education, and cross-cultural leadership and knowledge.

“Safety and Cultural Competency in Community-Based Services”

Logan Keziah-Hamill, MSW, LCSW, Coastal Horizons IFPS Region 11 Supervisor & Shantel Casiano, MSW, Coastal Horizons Region 7 Supervisor 

Best practices for ensuring staff and client safety in community-based services were highlighted. There was also discussion on safety considerations through the lens of cultural competency and an exploration of how cultural differences impact physical and psychological safety in the therapeutic relationship.

“Infant & Early Childhood Mental Health”

Diane Britz, MSW, LCSW, Child First NC Regional Clinical Director & Shannon Queiroga, MA, LPC, IMH-E® Clinical Director

Participants learned what infant and early childhood mental health is and how it directly relates to an infant’s/young child’s experiences with their primary caregiver. Together they thought about the caregiver-child relationship as a buffer to toxic stress and how to protect and support those relationships, even when a removal is imminent. Participants learned to identify signs and symptoms of social-emotional concerns for infants/young children in order to provide appropriate referrals that support an infant’s/young child’s mental health.

“Community Resiliency Model (CRM): The impact of community trauma on families”

Aimee Williams, MSW, LCSW, Intensive In-Home Coordinator

In addition to Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs), there are traumas in the community known as Adverse Community Environments which impact the health, safety and well-being of families. CRM® introduces six wellness skills designed to help adults and children learn to track their own nervous systems in order to bring the body, mind and spirit back into greater balance, and to encourage people to pass the skills along to family, friends and their wider community. Through hands-on experiences, participants were introduced to CRM and learned “The Basic Three” skills to bring them back into their “resilience zone” where they can function as their best selves.

The above presentations were video-recorded.  If you’d like access to view them, please contact Ryan Estes, Coastal Horizons Center Treatment Operations Director, at 910-202-3155 or

Posted by Michelle Reines, NFPN Executive Director

Web Database

Since the Covid-19 quarantine began, most agencies have been providing virtual services and managing their client data remotely.  NFPN’s web database services have been very helpful for many programs during this time.  For several years, we’ve partnered with a company in the United States to provide this service, and we’re excited to announce an additional partnership with a web database company in Australia!

Both of these web databases can be accessed from any internet-connected device and they are user-friendly.  The web database developers worked with NFPN to design the databases specifically for use with our assessment tools (NCFAS-G, NCFAS-G+R, Trauma/Well-Being).

The databases include the following features to meet the needs of workers:

  • Accessible through the internet
  • Unique identifier in order to easily track families
  • Demographics on caregivers and children (age, gender, race, ethnicity, living situation at case opening/closure, reasons for referral, etc.)
  • Quick access to scale definitions to assist in completing ratings
  • Indicators/graphs to inform workers of status of completion of ratings on assigned families
  • Case plan form that guides the worker in developing goals and services
  • Immediate access to reports on progress of any family or all families
  • Ability to print reports, save data and reports in .pdf format, or export to Excel

And these features meet the needs of supervisors and administrators:

  • Unique family code to ensure confidentiality
  • Ability to track each worker’s progress with families
  • Requirement for 100% entry of opening/closing ratings (no missing ratings)
  • Reporting features on both incomplete and completed cases that show the number and the percent of families at each domain, number of families that are at baseline/above, number of families with problem ratings (mild, moderate, serious)
  • Immediate access to reports and status of completion of ratings on families
  • Customizable to meet additional needs of an agency

These web databases are available, for initial setup and annual fees, with the purchase of an NFPN assessment tool.  The fees, paid to the developer, include tech support.

Many people have noted that the shift to working remotely and providing virtual services to some extent will continue long after the Covid crisis has passed.  The need to access data remotely existed well before this and will likely continue from now on.  If you’re interested in subscribing to these database services, please contact me at  

Michelle Reines, Executive Director

National Family Preservation Network | 888-498-9047

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