November 2014 NewsBlast


Essential News for You and Your Family

Idaho Federation of Families NewsBlast
November  2014
The following Federation NewsBlast is our E-newsletter highlighting exciting opportunities, important information and some community calendar activities that may be of interest.

We very much encourage organizations and individuals to notify our office when you have relevant upcoming community events that we may share on our website calendar, and our monthly Federation NewsBlasts.  Call us in Boise at 208-433-8845 or 1-800-905-3436.

Your friends at….

Idaho Federation of Families for Children’s Mental Health

Steve’s Space

It is nice to see all the colors coming out in the Boise area and white on the mountain tops.  Although knowing the warmth is going away and what comes next isn’t that appealing, except of course for skiers, turkeys and Santa.  Well maybe not that appealing for turkeys either!

But last month the room was filled with warmth while IFFCMH recognized seven advocates for their outstanding advocacy in behalf of kids and families at the annual awards banquet (see below). It was quite a day that brought IFFCMH staff and board members from around the state together for the event as well as a series of afternoon workshops and board meeting.  Congratulations to all the recipients of Outstanding Advocacy awards. Special thanks to Ross Edmunds our Keynote speaker and all our workshop presenters who participated in the day and evening program.

We are pleased to be collaborating with the Consortium for Idahoans with Disabilities and working on Advocacy Workshops being offered this month.  These workshops feature opportunities to learn about upcoming legislation addressing sign language interpreters, how to communicate with legislators (Legislators are invited to participate), information on Close the Gap Idaho (Medicaid) and new Home and Community Based Services rules.  Next up is the Pocatello workshop Sat. Nov. 8 at LIFE Inc., 640 Pershing.  The remaining workshops in Idaho Falls, Boise, Twin Falls, CDA, and Nampa are all scheduled for Sat. Nov. 15th.   All workshops are scheduled at  9AM – 3PM. See below for more information and how to register.

We are hearing good things about the mediation process that has been taking place for the past year with respect to the Jeff D lawsuit.  Jeff D is a lawsuit that was brought over 30 years ago and the settlement that appears to be emerging from this most recent mediation is hinting at system improvement that will benefit kids and families.  The settlement and plan is still under wraps, but look for information to be released soon.  IFFCMH and all children and family advocates are thinking positively about this latest effort to resolve the lawsuit and significant recommendations for children’s mental health systems improvement.

IFFCMH commends the Statesman newspaper and Boise Public Radio for their collaboration and work on increasing public awareness of the fragmented Idaho mental health system.  The week long stories on the radio and newspaper articles have raised the shade that has been pulled over the mental health system.  But it is only a beginning.  IFFCMH hopes that both of these media will continue to keep the public informed and begin the next step of advocating for action and discussing ways that people can become involved and advocate for system improvement.

IFFCMH Third Annual Advocacy Awards Banquet and Community Workshops


2014 Advocacy Award Winners L-R: Jennifer Zielinski, Marilyn Baughman, Susannah Heist, Chuck Halligan, Howard Belodoff, Mary Lemke

webinar blocks


Free November Webinar


 Ruth York, Certified Parent Coach, MPH, Family CPR – owner, 
will present 
“From Chaos to Calm: Strategies for Managing Difficult Children”
The webinar will be live on Thursday, November 6th at 10:00 AM. Certificates of Attendance will be available for this live session upon email request. 
The webinar will also be recorded and will be available for viewing via our website at your convenience. However, we cannot issue Certificates of Attendance if viewed in this manner.
Advance registration is required for the live session and a computer with internet access is needed. If you do not have speakers on your computer, you will also need a telephone to access the sound portion.  For the recorded version at a later date, you will need computer speakers to hear the sound. Call 1-800-905-3436 for additional information. To register, please click the link below.


Register for the live webinar: 

“From Chaos to Calm: Strategies for Managing Difficult Children”


The Idaho Federation of Families for Children’s Mental Health invites you to join us for free, informal, friendly group meetings and to share experiences, provide mutual emotional support, learn about resources and enjoy the company of peers.
Idaho City

Strengthening Families Program – Idaho City, Boise County

A 7 week family program focused on developing family life skills that will increase parent-child attachment, stress management and coping skills, effective communication, and effective discipline techniques; and reduce family conflicts, stress, depression, & aggression.

Please contact Carol Dixon for more information at 208-433-8845 or by email at

Parent Group:  Behavior Modification
(Ideas for anger management, Q&A)
Thursday, November 13th at NICMHC on Ontario
10:00 AM
Parent Group:  Behavior Modification
(Ideas for anger management, Q&A)
Tuesday, November 4th at 501 Lakeside
6:30 – 8:00 PM
Youth Meeting
Tuesday, November 25th at 501 Lakeside
6:30 PM
Topic: Friend-making skills (will include games with that goal)
Please contact Mary Ruth Dilling at for more information.
Parent Education & Support Groups 
Wednesday, November 12th at 6:00 PM
Gateway School
Dinner will be provided. Please pre-register with Steve (below).
Contact Executive Director Steve Graci for more information –
Parent Groups
 Wednesday, November 12th – “Coping Skills”
1:00 to 3:00 PM
Refreshments will be served.
Youth Development Group
Wednesday, November 12th – “Coping Skills”
4:00 to 6:00 PM
All groups will be at Positive Connections – 1373 Fillmore Street 

For any questions, please email Family Support Specialist Mindy Hoskovec at


For Parents:  Open Forum for families to discuss their Optum Idaho experiences
Wednesday, November 19th
5:30 – 7:00 PM
Marshall Public Library – Community Room
113 S. Garfield
A light dinner will be served.
Please RSVP to Family Support Specialist Marja Slifka at
For Youth:  It’s going to be a fun surprise!
Saturday, November 15th
10:00 -11:45 AM
Location: Idaho Museum of Natural History on the ISU campus
Meet at the metal bison by the parking lot.
Dress appropriately for the weather as we will be indoors and outdoors.
Bring a filled water bottle.



Dates & locations for our November groups are pending…
Please email Family Support Specialist Richard Kauer at

 Respite Care  


Families and service providers acquainted with issues in children’s mental health frequently recognize the strong need for, and lack of, respite care providers as one of the largest gaps in service for both themselves and others.

The Idaho Federation of Families for Children’s Mental Health maintains a list of respite care providers from all around the state.  Our providers have all participated in training and have been background checked.

We are searching for new respite care providers in every part of Idaho.  Do you have room in your heart to help these families?

To participate as a provider you are required to take a two hour online training and to successfully complete a background check, for which the Federation pays.  For more information or to register for the upcoming free Monday, November 17th webinar training at 7PM(MST), please contact Cindy at 1-800-905-3436 or or

Respite helps preserve the family unit by providing care for children with special needs on a temporary basis. It reduces stress on the entire family and provides an opportunity for families to relax. It allows more time for parents to participate in community life; and it gives parents time to rejuvenate from the daily stressors of parenting. Parents interested in obtaining respite care should discuss the opportunities with their case managers.

Youth M.O.V.E. as a New Stage of Youth Involvement


Youth M.O.V.E. (Motivating Others through Voices of Experience) is an exciting youth leadership initiative in Idaho with the goal of bringing together youth to create a new outlook on mental health and to make sure needed services are in place.  Youth M.O.V.E. seeks the best way to help youth in our communities have a voice and become their own advocates.

This youth-based nonprofit organization is working to create chapters in counties across Idaho. Chapters can focus on whatever youth in that county deem to be important in their community such as suicide, juvenile justice, autism, gangs or substance abuse. The overall outlook is that mental health can affect youth in many ways.

Youth M.O.V.E. Idaho is part of Youth M.O.V.E. National, which provides training and support to the local chapters. The national organization hosts monthly calls to the states. Youth are welcome to join the calls and learn how to become stronger advocates and leaders in their cause.

If you want more information about Youth M.O.V.E. Idaho, you can go to or phone Susan Delyea at (208)433-8845 / toll free at 1-800-905-3436 or email

 Idaho Federation of Families Presents

Frequently Asked Questions about Sibshops

What are Sibshops? For the adults who run them and for the agencies that sponsor them, Sibshops are evidence of their loving concern for the family member who will have the longest-lasting relationship with a person who has a disability. However, for the kids who attend them, Sibshops are pedal-to-the-metal events where they will meet other sibs (usually for the first time), have fun, laugh, talk about the good and not-so-good parts of having a sib with special needs, play some great games, learn about the services their brothers and sister receive, and have some more fun.

Are Sibshops a form of therapy? Sibshops may be “therapeutic” for kids to attend, but they’re not therapy. Sibshops take a wellness perspective. They’re a celebration of the many lifelong contributions made by brothers and sisters of people with special health and developmental needs.

Autumn Sibshop Schedule:

Saturday from 10 AM to 1 PM

 November 8th


Where: Warm Springs Counseling Center (Boise) 

 740 Warm Springs Avenue, Second Floor

Pre-registration required.


If you are interested or would like more information, please contact Susan Delyea at  or call her at


An Opportunity to Learn More about the Expanded Medicare-Medicaid Coordinated Plan

To view the schedule of an Idaho Medicaid meeting near you, please click this link


Boise & Meridian Community Health Screening Series
FREE Health Screenings will be provided for adults 18+ with no insurance or limited access to preventive health care.  For more information go to Community Health Screening.

Warm Springs Counseling Center Pleased to Announce 

a New Girls’ Group!

Relaxation & Coping Skills Group for Girls Ages 13-17

Group addresses issues pertaining to:

  •  Anxiety & Stress Management
  •  Self Image/Self Esteem
  •  Relaxation & Coping Skills

This group starts November 20th and is accepting adolescent females ages 13-17 years old. Sessions are held weekly on Thursdays from 5-6 pm and will run for six weeks, with no sessions on the holidays. (Group dates:  11/20, 12/4, 12/11, 12/18, 1/8 and 1/15)

Group sessions include a weekly topic, discussion, related yoga/relaxation activity, and processing.

The leader of this group is: Jessica Adams, LPC


Children’s Home Society of Idaho

2nd Floor Conference Room

740 Warm Springs Avenue

Boise, ID 83712


Jessica Adams

(208) 343-7797 ext. 1350 or


$42 per session

Warm Springs Counseling Center accepts most insurance plans and Optum Idaho. Subsidy program available for those who qualify.

Intermountain Hospital Lecture Scheduled

Our next lecture will be Thursday, November 13, 2014, beginning promptly at 12:00 – 1:00. Our guest speaker is Alex Wills, MD., Psychiatrist and his title talk is “Somatic System Disorder”. By attending this lecture you will know the new Somatoform updates in the DSM-V and discuss treatment modalities for Somatic Symptom Disorder.

Dr. Wills attended the Sackler School of Medicine-New York State/American Program in Israel and New York City. He completed his residency and a year of fellowship training at John Burns School of Medicine, University of Hawaii, in Honolulu, Hawaii. Dr. wills can treat children and adults with issues such as depression, bipolar, general anxiety or OCD, schizophrenia, ADD, post-traumatic stress disorders and partner with your neurologist in treating Alzheimer’s or other dementias. He can also provide individual therapy and psychotropic medication management.

If you would like to attend this lecture you may call the lecture line at 350-2383.

***Intermountain Hospital is an NBCC-Approved Continuing Education Provider and may offer NBCC-approved clock hours for events that meet NBCC requirements. The ACEP solely is responsible for all aspects of the program.”

The Boise/Ada County Homeless Coalition Presents:
2014 Walk a Mile in My Shoes
Friday, November 7, 2014
8:00 AM – Julia Davis Park
For more information click here
Register at

Parent Corner

Parents’ Corner

The Federation recommends “The Price of Silence… A Mom’s Perspective on Mental Illness” by Liza Long.  Liza is a parent advocate and recipient of a 2013 Outstanding Advocacy Award from the Federation.  She and her son are active advocates on both a state and national level. Her book is now available in bookstores and on-line here.

Association for Treatment and Training in the Attachment of Children (ATTACh)

ATTACh is excited to announce two online training series coming up this fall, FREE for ATTACh members:

Hope for Healing:

This five part training is designed to help parents of children who have disabilities and/or disorders of attachment. The guide is educational, inspirational and supportive. Caretakers will learn a new way of looking at, and responding to, their child’s behavior allowing them to parent more effectively. Providing a good home is not enough for many children. Parents need to truly understand their child’s issues, and needs. Only then can a parent create a therapeutic home environment and access appropriate resources to promote healing.

Effects of Children Who Witness Domestic Violence:

Domestic or Family Violence not only effects the victim, but also has a major impact on all family members, especially children and youth. We will begin with an over view of domestic violence, then discuss and learn what the effects are at various developmental stages and how this impacts their relationships with foster and adoptive families. We will also discuss what signs to look for in the children and youth in care and examine the best practices for therapeutic services. Participants will be able to: (1) Identify 3 ways family violence impacts youth developmentally; (2) recognize long term mental health issues related to witnessing violence; and (3) identify optimal services for case plan recommendations.

For registration information, contact our office at or 612-861-4222.

Training dates are available below and also on our calendar at

Hope for Healing Series Part 1 of 5: Attachment

Tue, Oct 7, 2014 7:00 PM – 8:30 PM CST

Presenter: Mary McGowan, ATTACh Executive Director

Hope for Healing Part 2 of 5; Attachment, Trauma and the Brain

Tue, Oct 14, 2014 7:00 PM – 8:30 PM CST

Presenter: Mary Jo Land, Registered Clinician and Past President of ATTACh

Hope for Healing Series Part 3 of 5: Loss and Behavior

Tue, Nov 4, 2014 7:00 PM – 8:30 PM CST

Presenter: Mary McGowan

The Effects on Children Who Witness Domestic Violence: Part 1 of 4

Thu, Nov 6, 2014 7:00 PM – 8:30 PM CST

Presenter: Mary McGowan, ATTACh Executive Director

Hope for Healing Series Part 4 of 5: Therapeutic Parenting

Tue, Nov 11, 2014 7:00 PM – 8:30 PM CST

Presenter: Mary McGowan

The Effects on Children Who Witness Domestic Violence: Part 2 of 4

Tue, Nov 13, 2014 7:00 PM – 8:30 PM CST

Presenter: Mary McGowan

Hope for Healing Series Part 5 of 5: Off to School We Go…

Tue, Dec 2, 2014 7:00 PM – 8:30 PM CST

Presenter: Mary McGowan

The Effects on Children Who Witness Domestic Violence: Part 3 of 4

Thu, Dec 11, 2014 7:00 PM – 8:30 PM CST

Presenter: Mary McGowan

The Effects on Children Who Witness Domestic Violence: Part 4 of 4

Thu, Jan 8, 2015 7:00 PM – 8:30 PM CST

Presenter: Mary McGowan

Ways to Support with Whole Health Tools:
Helping Individuals Interested in Smoking Cessation and Have a Mental Health Diagnosis
This November 5th webinar will be presented by Optum. Click here to view the details.

2nd Annual TransForm Idaho Non-Profit Community Focus Group
Join TFI and other non-profit organizations
Identify issues – Share resources – Share ideas – Strengthen networks
Read the details here
or call Sue Philley at 208-340-9450 with questions

TransForm Idaho Presents
“Creating a Strategy to Win Support for Your Issue”
November 19, 2014
7:00 PM to 9:00 PM
Boise Unitarian Universalist Fellowship
6200 N. Garrett Street
Boise, ID  83714
How can you best gain support for an issue you are passionate about?
Learn about strategic planning that will make your efforts more effective.
Materials will be provided.
Refreshments will be served.
Questions? Contact Sue Philley at 208-340-9450
In This NewsBlast
Steve’s Space
Advocacy Awards Winners
Advocacy Workshops
Parent Webinar Series
Groups Schedule
Respite Care Training
Youth MOVE Idaho
Expanded Medicare-Medicaid Plan
Community Health Screenings
New Girls’ Group
Intermountain Hospital Lecture
Walk a Mile in My Shoes
Parents’ Corner
OPTUM Webinar
Article Headline
TransForm Idaho Focus Group
TransForm Idaho Event

Board of Directors 

Kathie Garrett

Jennifer Griffis

Susannah Heist

Barbara Hill

Rick Huber

Fred Kirn

Kathy Mercer

Kateri Ray

Jami Stroud

Office Staff

Stephen Graci, Executive Director

Carol Dixon,

Family Support Coordinator

Susan Delyea,

Youth Specialist

Mike Canavan, Communications & Tech Support

Cindy Shotton, Administrative Assistant / NewsBlast Editor


Family Support Specialists


Region I
Mary Ruth Dilling
Kelly Bryant


Region II

Tabatha Shears

Region III

Carol Dixon

Region IV

Carol Dixon

Region V

Mindy Hoskovec

Region VI

Marja Slifka

Region VII

Richard Kauer


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