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A1       BRAIN XP: Be My Friend (Teens Helping Teens)
  • Christine Marie Frey, Founder, Brain XP
  • Debbie Dennison, Operations Manager, Brain XP
Brain XP's Be My Friend (Teens Helping Teens) Presentation takes attendees on a journey through mental health challenges from the eyes of a teenager experiencing it & overcoming the daily stigma faced on school campuses. The result is a unique method of surviving the daily teen trials in today's competitive & technological world. The System of H.O.P.E. (Healthy Mind, Open Sharing, Positive Coping & Empowerment) educates youth & demonstrates to professionals how to relate to teens. The interactive presentation will leave attendees with free access to Brain XP's "Coping Skills" Toolbox, blogs, videos, podcasts & website content for themselves or clients.

A2       Paying for College (Financial Aid 101)
  • Yvonne Hollingsworth, Outreach and Training, California Student Aid Commission
  • Minna Tran, Trainer, California Student Aid Commission
College comes with expenses, but these expenses do not have to come out of your wallet or put you into overwhelming debt. Over the past few years major strides have been made to make college affordable for foster students. We encourage you to come to this workshop to learn about the different Grants and Scholarships that are available, and how to apply for them. You will also receive handouts that guide you when it comes time for you to apply for or maintain your financial aid awards.

A3       Using the “RISE” LGBTQ Training to engage and support LGBTQ youth entering and within systems of care.
  • Ryan Walthuis, Social Worker III, County of Fresno Independent Living Program
  • Mecca Hutchings, Social Worker III, County of Fresno Independent Living Program
This training will provide the tools to better support LGBTQ youth entering and within systems of care towards attaining stability and permanency. We will discuss examples from the “Recognize Intervene Support and Empower” (RISE) training model and interactive training activities to cover topics such as: Impact of Language, barriers to permanency, the coming-out experience, rejecting and accepting behaviors, Supporting and Affirming Towards Permanency, managing information and legal and professional standards. Additionally, we will present how Fresno County has been using the RISE training to support LGBTQ youth and professionals working with them and how you can use this training in your own area.

A4       Protecting the Financial Future of Foster Youth – An Advocate’s Guide
  • Elizabeth Wells, Attorney, Law Foundation of Silicon Valley
  • Felisa Ihly, Pro Bono Specialist, Law Foundation of Silicon Valley
  • Emily Smyth, Social Worker II, ILP, Santa Clara County Dept of Family and Children's Services
What is Identity Theft and what is the impact of identity theft on foster youth?  What are the legal requirements for child welfare agencies to assist foster youth with obtaining and reviewing credit reports?  Come learn the answers to these questions and more.  Learn through demonstrations how to identify and remediate identity theft.  You will leave with a resource packet with important documents including sample credit reports, a checklist for reviewing credit reports, information regarding how to monitor credit and obtain credit reports, a handout for teens on protecting their identity from thieves, information on data breaches, and a resource explaining credit freezes and fraud alerts.

A5       A Bridge Home
  • Paul Vinetz, Bureau Chief, Los Angeles County Probation Department
  • William Lehman, Senior Manager, Los Angeles Homeless Services Authority
  • Graynisha Skinner, Former TAY Youth
This facilitated panel-led interactive discussion will highlight the experience, strength, and hope of a former system-involved youth who has capitalized on her lived-experience to become independent, self-employed and self-sufficient.  We will also address broad issues related to Coordinated Entry Systems and Community and Cross-System efforts that work to prevent TAY homelessness. Included in the presentation will also be discussion on strategies and practices that improve outcomes and challenges faced by TAY as they related to stable housing and the necessary supportive services.

A6       Wellness, Resiliency and You!
  • Bre Williams, Programs Manager, PEERS
  • Bianca Brown, Program Assistant (TAY), PEERS
  • Reinaldi Gilder, Program Coordinator (TAY), PEERS
  • A member of our Support group
In this TAY lead workshop, participants will be led through a self exploratory workshop where they will identify wellness tools, triggers, and create action plans to deal with life stressors and other emotional health challenges.

A7       #nomorelabels
  • Meghan Kestner, Education Specialist,
"How do you want to be remembered?" Come to this thought provoking workshop that will address the issue of bullying in schools and communities. We will discuss stigmas and labels as well as tools to use to self advocate and help eradicate these labels and stigmas.  Leave with more awareness about how labels impact people and how you can make them positive instead of negative.

A8       Peer to Peer Outreach through Student Ambassador Programs
  • Jessica Smith, Statewide FYSI Liaison Sr. Specialist,  Foundation for CA Community Colleges
  • Carly Smith, Equity Sr. Specialist  Foundation for California Community Colleges
Most foster youth face multiple barriers to completing their educational goals, including food and housing insecurity. Without consistent and adequate access to food, foster youth struggle to focus on their education, which seems secondary in importance compared to addressing such a basic, everyday challenge as hunger.  Come to this workshop and learn about a peer to peer outreach strategy through the implementation of Student Ambassador Programs at California's community colleges across the state. We will focus on how Student Ambassadors are reaching students from foster care to help current and former foster youth find out if they are eligible to receive CalFresh benefits, a sustainable solution that provides free money for groceries to students and their families. With information and access to free money for groceries, students will be able to focus on completing their academic endeavors.

A9       CHAFEE GRANT, FAFSA & CADAA Application Stations

  • Student Aid Commission Staff

Are you enrolled in college? Are you thinking of enrolling into college? If so, you should complete your financial aid applications and we are here to help! This workshop is an E-Bus mobile application stations that provide onsite assistance for youth and young adults between the ages of 14 – 26. Those who participate will receive assistance in completing the Chafee Grant and the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). In addition, those who are  noncitizen without a Social Security card or had one issued through the federal Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program will receive assistance with completing the California Dream Act Application (CADAA). The eBusses are equipped with 16-20 laptop computers, printers, scanners, and access to the internet.

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