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September 2019 Newsletter

“Sometimes we need someone to simply be there, not to fix anything or do anything in particular, but just to let us feel we are supported and cared about.” Anonymous

Employee of the Month

Hanrahan Youth Services would like to recognize Megan Meek as our Employee of the Month for August.

Megan Meek has been with Hanrahan Youth Services since August of 2018. In her time at HYS she has become a hardworking staff member. Megan works well with her Manager and staff, she is very reliable, and is very passionate about the work she does with the youth. Megan has recently took it into her own hands and made menus, recipes and grocery shopping lists for the group home youth and staff. Her hard work is shown by going out of her way and making these menus very beneficial. Megan responds and follows through with all tasks asked.

Congratulations Megan!

Keep up the good work!

Congratulations/Acknowledgement:

Please make sure that all homes are to be clean, licensable and up to standards on a daily basis. Note that ALL property standards are the responsibility of the foster parents- the yard and the home are both important.

HYS would like to involve you in ‘Webinar Wednesday’s’ Paul will be sending out a Webinar each week for staff and Foster Parents to take part in. A $25.00 gift card will be given out weekly as incentive for the most detailed feedback/observations/commentary to the Webinar series.

Marijuana Legalization:

Please Remind your youth Marijuana Legalization use is 19.

Marijuana is still not permitted on premises! Please stress this to the youth.

Go over the safety importance with not getting into vehicles with people they know who are under the influence.

Go over with them the safety and no vehicle driving if they are under the influence. Don’t forget to double check that the youth are not bringing this into the homes.

Please make sure to remember the Ministry Terminology Changes:

Crown Ward -> Extended Society Care

Society Ward -> Interim Society Care

Apprehension -> Brought into a Place of Safety

Indian & Native Children -> First Nation, Inuit and Metis Children and Youth

Extended family -> Expanded Definition

Dealing with Matters -> Dealing with children

He /She -> They / Person / Child/ Youth

Runaway/ Abandoned -> No Longer Used

September Special Days

September is Childhood Cancer Awareness Month

One child with cancer is too many. During Childhood Cancer Awareness Month in September and all throughout the year, we care about every single child living with cancer and their families. We understand the toll that cancer can take. At the Canadian Cancer Society, because of our donors, we continue to invest in Canada’s best childhood cancer research. We are Canada’s largest national charitable funder of childhood cancer research.

Labour Day- September 2nd, 2019

Labour Day in Canada is celebrated on the first Monday of September. It originally gave workers the chance to campaign for better working conditions or pay. The day is now part of a long weekend for many Canadians. Enjoy your long weekend!

World Suicide Prevention Day- September 10th 2019

World Suicide Prevention Day (WSPD), on 10 September, is organized by the International Association for Suicide Prevention (IASP). WHO has been co-sponsor of the day. The purpose of this day is to raise awareness around the globe that suicide can be prevented.

In past years, over 300 activities in around 70 countries were reported to IASP, including educational and commemorative events, press briefings and conferences, as well as Facebook and Twitter coverage.

World Heart Day- September 29th 2019

Heart Day is part of an international campaign to spread awareness about heart disease and stroke prevention. This is the perfect day to quit smoking, get exercising and start eating healthy – all in the name of keeping your ticker in good working order, and improving the health and well being of people the world over.

September Events

Saturday Night Movies

Bring the whole family for a double-header screening of two box office hits every Saturday evening. Come early (starting at 6 PM) to take part in pre-movie activities like meeting costumed characters, pop-up performances, giveaways, and more. Movies start at 7 PM and 9 PM.

Bring your lawn chair and settle in for an evening full of family-friendly fun in Garden Square.

Saturday Night Movies are presented by My Smile Dentistry.

Georgetown Fall Fair

Georgetown Fairgrounds

1 Park Avenue, Halton Hills ON, L7G 1Y5

Friday, 06 September 2019

Brampton Fall Fair

Brampton FairGrounds

Starts: Thursdsay September 12

Start Time 10:00 AM

Oktoberfest

September 14-15, 21-22, 2019

Wonderland

Back by popular demand, our Oktoberfest at the Park will include authentic German-themed food and beverage specials, traditional festival bands, and daily activities! Dust off your stein and come join the party for two fun-filled weekends!

Terry Fox Run

Sunday, 15 September 2019

The Ivy Bridge 160 Main Street south Everyone is invited to Brampton Central's annual Terry Fox Run. The 4.5-kilometre route is bicycle, stroller, rollerblade, and wheelchair accessible!

Veg Food Fest

September 6-8

Harbourfront Centre

12PM-9PM

Attended by 40,000 visitors each fall at Harbourfront Centre, Veg Food Fest is North America’s largest celebration of all things veg!

Experience North America’s best veg fest with over 160 top vendors, more than 40 hours of presentations and workshops with engaging speakers, and music curated by Toronto Downtown Jazz.

The Word on the Street on Toronto

September 21, 2019

Harbourfront Centre

The Word On The Street is a non-profit organization that celebrates Canadian reading, writing, and champions literacy primarily through a free, annual outdoor festival.

Summer is here!

Perfect time to do some cleaning both inside the home (including the garage) and out! Get the whole group involved and de-clutter. Having everyone join in will make a big difference in the workload. To motivate them, try turning up some music or establishing a “reward” for when the work is done.

There are some special chores that need to be done seasonally like cleaning patios and windows. We ignore them for most of the fall and winter, but now it is time to get these things clean. Even though these chores only need to be done once or twice a year, they will help the home look better.

Temperatures are slowly creeping upwards. We ask that staff and foster parents take a walk around the properties to see if there is any garbage laying around that needs to be picked up or any items that may require fixing.

Here are some ideas to get you started:

Write a Summertime Activity List Have each person write down activities they would like to do over the summer on index cards, draw one each day or every time they say "I'm bored!"

Spoon Up Some Ice Cream One of the quintessential summer symbols is ice cream. Make the first day of summer even better by stopping by your favorite ice cream place or setting up a make-your-own sundae bar for dessert.

Freshen Up Your Home Perhaps spring cleaning got away from you. Let the official change of seasons be your cue to freshen up the look of everyone’s room.

Have a Picnic Celebrate the first night of summer with a dinnertime picnic.

Play Ball Set a trend for an active summer and organize a softball game with family and friends.

Camp Out Kick off summer with a night under the stars. Go camping or hang out in your backyard. Do traditional fun camping things like grilling hot dogs and telling ghost stories.

Enjoy a Summer-themed Feast What's your favorite summertime treat? Maybe it's BBQ ribs, burgers, s'mores or fresh fruits and veggies. Combine them in a meal that's a toast to the season.

There are some special chores that need to be done seasonally like cleaning patios and windows. We ignore them for most of the fall and winter, but now it is time to get these things clean. Even though these chores only need to be done once or twice a year, they will help the home look better.

If you need to use the HYS pick-up truck to do garbage-runs, please contact Erin Hurley at head office to book it. We strongly advise that this gets done over the next month or two to prepare for the warmer months

Brain Teaser

Just for fun, try to solve the following brain teasers. The answers will be at the bottom of the newsletter. Good luck!

1. A man pushes his car to a hotel and tells the owner he’s bankrupt. Why?

2. What is special about these words: job, polish, herb?

DID YOU KNOW?...

Teen Vaping: What you need to know

"Although e-cigarettes have been around for more than a decade, vaping rates have skyrocketed in recent years, especially among teens. E-cigarettes are now the most frequently used tobacco product among adolescents — some 2.1 million middle and high school students were e-cigarette users in 2017 — far surpassing traditional combustible cigarettes.

JUUL, a popular vape device that comes in fun flavors, looks like a flash drive and can be charged in a USB port, is especially concerning. JUUL delivers high levels of nicotine, making the product extremely addictive. The company that makes and markets JUUL recently exceeded a $10 billion valuation faster than any company, including Facebook. JUUL sales now make up more than half of the e-cigarette market.

Recently the FDA announced that it will be cracking down not only on illegal sales of e-cigarettes to minors, but also the “kid-friendly marketing and appeal of these products” because “we see clear signs that youth use of electronic cigarettes has reached an epidemic proportion.”

Teachers, health professionals and parents are alarmed by this trend and trying to educate not only teens but also themselves, as it’s all still so new.

What is vaping?

Vaping is the act of inhaling and exhaling the vapor produced by the heated nicotine liquid (often called “juice”) of an electronic cigarette (e-cigarette or e-cig), vape pen, or personal vaporizer. It’s also commonly called JUULing (pronounced jewel-ing).

What originated as a smoking cessation aid has quickly became a popular — and addictive — product in its own right. Sarper Taskiran, MD, a child and adolescent psychiatrist at the Child Mind Institute, attributes the recent rise in popularity to packaging and advertising. “The teens are after innovation and they’re attracted by sleek design and ease of use,” he says. “They look like an Apple product.”

Although vaping companies emphatically deny that they are marketing to young people, critics note such features in their advertising as youthful images and colors, animation, actors who appear to be under 21, and suggestions that vaping makes you happier and improves your social status.

Although some of the health risks associated with vaping appear to be less severe than traditional combustible cigarettes (there’s no tar, for example), there are still risks.

Some known risks of vaping are:

  1. E-cigarettes contain high levels of nicotine. According to the company’s website, the nicotine content of one JUULpod is equivalent to one pack of cigarettes.

  2. Because of these high nicotine levels, vaping is extremely addictive — and teens are already more susceptible to addiction than adults because their brains are still developing, which makes them more likely to habituate to using drugs and alcohol.

  3. Addiction can impact the ability to focus. Dr. Taskiran has observed this with the adolescents he works with, who report that vaping initially increases their alertness and attention, but then experience a decrease in attention span. One student, for example, was able to sit through practice ACT exams but after JUULing for six months “can’t sit still because she starts craving, can’t think of questions, and just starts fidgeting.”

  4. E-cigarettes and similar devices contain carcinogenic compounds, and a recent study found significantly increased levels of carcinogens in the urine of teens who vape.

  5. A recent study found that vaping does, in fact, cause lung irritation akin to that seen in smokers and people with lung disease and causes damage to vital immune system cells.

  6. Taskiran notes that vaping increases heart rate and blood pressure, so can increase circulatory problems. One teen he works with started vaping and found that his swim times dropped because he can no longer sustain the heart rate required for swimming.

Dr. Taskiran advises parents to start by educating themselves, so they know what they’re talking about going in, and to take an inquisitive and curious approach to what their teen’s experience is. “The most important thing is keeping it as a dialogue,” he says. “Declarative statements like ‘It’s bad for you’ just end the conversation.”

Dr. Taskiran recommends starting the conversation more generally by asking if a lot of kids at school vape. Once the conversation is initiated, you can slowly work up to asking things like, “What is your experience with that? What are the flavors like?” He also suggests getting a sense of what they know (or think they know) about the product, which gives you an opening to start educating them.

The silver lining of Sarah’s experience with her son is that he actually told his dad about the experience even before he knew he’d been caught. “They had a full one hour conversation about it after I was already asleep. He told my husband that he tried it for the first time and that it burned his throat and he didn’t like it.” She got the call from the principal the next morning before her son had a chance to tell her himself. “He’s a great kid and doesn’t really get in trouble except for talking in class because he’s bored. My goal has always been open communication and to keep him talking to us. He did!”

Of course, while parents need to educate themselves, the onus isn’t entirely on them. “Schools need to own this as well and provide educational strategies for both teachers and students,” says Dr. Taskiran. Prevention is a lot easier than treatment later on, he says, and notes that peer education can play a particularly important role.

If you are concerned that your child has become addicted there are plenty of treatment options. Dr. Taskiran recommends consulting with a clinician who is well-versed in addiction treatments. “This is a true nicotine addiction,” he says. “People usually think this is different from cigarette use — but it can be more severe than cigarette use.”

Since they leave little odor, e-cigarettes are particularly easy to hide and even use discreetly in public places, including school. Kids are also vaping marijuana at increasing rates, which brings its own health risks.

Why parents should be concerned

One problem with vaping is that teens hear that it’s not as bad for your health as smoking cigarettes and think there is no harm. “They really think that they are mostly flavors and that they are inhaling a pleasant gas,” says Dr. Taskiran.

A recent study of 12th graders found that kids who vaped (but were not previously smokers) were more than four times as likely to “move away from the perception of cigarettes as posing a great risk of harm.” The study and others like it have showed that teens who vape are much more likely to start smoking cigarettes.

The packaging does little to convey the risks. “They are very enticing the way they look. It’s not transparent at all. It says 5% nicotine, which sounds like nothing, so teens think 95% is water weight or vapor,” laments Dr. Taskiran.

Plus, he points out, smoking never stopped being cool. It’s still positively portrayed in movies, and JUUL in particular has re-branded it to make vaping an even cooler alternative. But vaping isn’t only for the cool kids — many teens are curious (with flavors like mango, cucumber and crème, who wouldn’t be?) and presented with the opportunity will give it a try.

Sarah, a mom of two in Ann Arbor, MI, was shocked to get a phone call the other day from her son’s middle school principal, requiring her to come get him immediately for “emergency removal and suspension.” He and two friends had been caught vaping on school grounds after school, and a passing parent took photos and sent them to the administration.

Though they didn’t find any devices on her son — a straight A student with no prior offenses — the school, like many others, is taking a hard stance. “The principal knows that vaping is common and shared that the businesses in downtown Ann Arbor are selling to teens without asking for IDs,” relayed Sarah. “However, she feels the need to let my son and his friends know that it’s a really, really big deal.”

At this school, students caught vaping have to sign behavior contracts, must attend a Teens Using Drugs Class, and cannot participate in any sports, clubs or special events for the rest of the year. If the kids had been across the street, not on school grounds, it would have been a different scenario. But the principal said that had they been in high school rather than middle school, she would have called the police.

Sarah remembers what it was like to be a teenager so doesn’t think trying it is that big of a deal, but is concerned about addiction. “Addiction runs in my family and I worry about my son. Of course, I worry about the damage that the chemicals can do to his lungs and body as well,” she says.

Although some places are tightening restrictions locally, kids can still go to a website, click a button that says they are at least 21 years old, and purchase online. “The majority of adolescents I see are purchasing JUUL from the Internet,” says Dr. Taskiran.

How to talk to kids about vaping

Dr. Taskiran advises parents to start by educating themselves, so they know what they’re talking about going in, and to take an inquisitive and curious approach to what their teen’s experience is. “The most important thing is keeping it as a dialogue,” he says. “Declarative statements like ‘It’s bad for you’ just end the conversation.”

Dr. Taskiran recommends starting the conversation more generally by asking if a lot of kids at school vape. Once the conversation is initiated, you can slowly work up to asking things like, “What is your experience with that? What are the flavors like?” He also suggests getting a sense of what they know (or think they know) about the product, which gives you an opening to start educating them.

The silver lining of Sarah’s experience with her son is that he actually told his dad about the experience even before he knew he’d been caught. “They had a full one hour conversation about it after I was already asleep. He told my husband that he tried it for the first time and that it burned his throat and he didn’t like it.” She got the call from the principal the next morning before her son had a chance to tell her himself. “He’s a great kid and doesn’t really get in trouble except for talking in class because he’s bored. My goal has always been open communication and to keep him talking to us. He did!”

Of course, while parents need to educate themselves, the onus isn’t entirely on them. “Schools need to own this as well and provide educational strategies for both teachers and students,” says Dr. Taskiran. Prevention is a lot easier than treatment later on, he says, and notes that peer education can play a particularly important role.

If you are concerned that your child has become addicted there are plenty of treatment options. Dr. Taskiran recommends consulting with a clinician who is well-versed in addiction treatments. “This is a true nicotine addiction,” he says. “People usually think this is different from cigarette use — but it can be more severe than cigarette use.”

https://childmind.org/article/teen-vaping-what-you-need-to-know/

Duty to Report

Please remember that we all have a duty to report abuse or suspected abuse of a child. The Child and Family Services Act is clear on the civic responsibilities of ordinary citizens and their duty to report any concerns of abuse and neglect to Children’s Aid Societies, but there is a special responsibility on the part of professionals who work with children. It's important for all of us to increase our awareness about child abuse and neglect, to learn the signs and some of the underlying causes. Too many children lack the nurturing family and community supports essential for them to thrive and succeed. This has resulted in too many families coping with stressors and challenges affecting their ability to provide a safe, secure home for their children. (“Help Stop Abuse & Neglect”)

Please be sure to revisit the Duty to Report section of the Policy and Procedure Manual should you have questions regarding reporting procedures.

Strength Based Perspective

The Basics of Strength-Based Approach

Working from a strength-based perspective is a collaborative approach, whereby the person being supported by services is an active participant in the process of problem-solving issues they are experiencing. This allows the opportunity for the individual’s voice to be heard, and for the individual to be engaged in the decisions that affect their life. This is a chance to empower the client, but to also foster skills of self-advocacy. There is a significant focus on the quality of the relationship between the individual receiving support, and those that are providing the support. The relationship must be one of trust and transparency, in order for there to be real success.

A strength-based approach focuses on the inherent strengths of individuals, what their skills and abilities are, rather than on their deficits or problems. This also means investigating what resources are available, and how they can be used to accomplish what is needed. Although the goal is to promote the positive, this does not mean denying that issues or problems are affecting the client. Instead, it means combating situations based on the abilities and resources that exist, and utilizing these things in the most effective ways possible. The problems and concerns are not the main focus of intervention – the individual is.

Family and community work models often focus on the problems identified with the individual – thus, the individual is the problem that must be fixed. However, strength-based perspective focuses on the problem often existing because of interactions between people, organizations and structures.

Although issues exist, the individual only experiences the issue – the individual is not the issue.

The following are important principles of the strength-based perspective:

1) People are recognized as having potential, unique strengths and abilities, and have the capacity to continue to learn, grow, and change.

2) The focus of intervention is on the strengths and aspirations of the people we work with.

3) The language we use creates our reality – for the care providers, as well as children, youth, and families.

4) Communities and social environments are seen as being full of resources.

5) Service providers collaborate with the people they work with, and the client’s perspective of reality is primary.

6) Interventions are based on self-determination.

7) Change is inevitable.

8) There is a commitment to empowerment.

Problems are seen as the result of interactions between individuals, organizations or structures, rather than deficits within individuals, organizations or structures.

Training

We would like to continue to remind our staff and foster parents of the importance of ongoing training which can be used to assist you when dealing with the youth in our care. Hanrahan Youth Services is always willing to consider funding the many different sessions/webinars offered throughout the GTA and online that would be considered useful in working with our clients. We actually encourage all of you to make it a priority and take advantage of this opportunity to expand your professional development.

Should you be interested in doing so, please contact your resource worker or program coordinator with the details of the specific session you are looking to attend.

We have just recently registered a number of our staff and foster parents for workshops on:

· Motivating Change – Strategies for Approaching Resistance

· Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder – Strategies for Supporting

· Sexual Assault and Abuse Training

· Addictions and Mental Illness – Working with Co-Occurring Disorders

Many of our staff and foster parents have attended different workshops offered through the Crisis & Trauma Resource Institute (CTRI) in the past. They provide a wide range of training opportunities and included in their upcoming events are:

· Working in Social Services – The Essential Skills

· Violence Threat Assessment – Planning and Response

· Self-Injury Behaviour in Youth – Issues & Strategies

· Crisis Response Planning

· De-escalating Potentially Violent Situations

· Anxiety – Practical Intervention Strategies

· Challenging Behaviours in Youth – Strategies for Intervention

For a complete list and descriptions of their upcoming workshops, you can visit:

https://ca.ctrinstitute.com/workshops/category/public-workshops/

* Be sure to select the Toronto or Mississauga local listings.

Please note that approved training is not limited to CTRI, these are just some examples of ones that we regularly take advantage of. We are always open to anything new that comes up. If you come across something different that you think would be worth exploring for our staff and foster parents, please send the information to the management team.

Our mandatory annual trainings, including UMAB and First Aid & CPR, will continue as per the usual schedules throughout the year. For upcoming sessions, please contact the head office.

Foster Parent Time-Off and Scheduling Relief

We understand how hard it can be to work around the clock. We also know how important it is to take time off whether it be for running errands, taking a break, visiting family and friends, or just taking care of business...we get it!

Hanrahan has a growing list of relief staff to utilize for the time you need, however, there is a process that needs to be followed in order to do so. It is essential that you communicate your request with your resource worker by submitting a TIME OFF REQUEST FORM. He or she will get this time approved, and then provide you with the relief staff list or book the relief for you. It is imperative that you keep them well informed of the time you take off, as well as ensure that your relief staff are documenting their hours and signing signature sheets when necessary.

Please note that any changes in dates or time need to first be approved by your resource worker.

Brain Teasers answers:

1. He was playing Monopoly

2. They are all pronounced differently when the first letter is capitalized

Archive

NEWSLETTER

Location:

28 Malcolm Crescent, Brampton, ON,

L6S 3C8 

Talk to Us:

Tel: 905-450-4685

info@hanrahanyouth.com

  © 2016 Hanrahan Youth Services Inc. Website by Michael Hanrahan.