Transforming Care for Birth to Five


This past week, I had the pleasure of training forty early childhood professionals in my new curriculum, Cards for Connection©. Cards for Connection© is a two-day certification program. Forty Early Head Start Teachers, Healthy Family Nurse Home Visitors, Parent Advocates, Parent Educators and Mental Health Consultants linked arms with me to learn interventions that mitigate stress and trauma for families and build relational health, social emotional health and connection. These tools will enable professionals to help families thrive, build buffering mechanisms to offset adversity and create nurturing relationships for children and families.

We started with self-care, because, if you’re like these folks, supporting young children and families can be tough and heavy at times. As my colleague, Allison Whisenhunt reminded them, “Self-care doesn’t mean me first…it means me too!” Then, we moved onto core assumptions that create a baseline for doing this work. We focused on important themes like: Children require unconditional love. It takes quite some time to unpack this stuff…why? Because often helpers and the parents we support and educate never experienced unconditional love themselves. Next, we moved onto learning brief, efficacious interventions to support families and help them thrive!

Look at the results!! Before the training:

After the training:

Again, before the training:

And after:

Friends, this is how to change the lives of children and families. We can mitigate stress and harm by building buffering mechanisms that address early trauma. We can change the course of intergenerational trauma and create new, healthier patterns for children and their caregivers. And you DON’T have to be a psychologist to do this work!

The most touching feedback I received came from one of the mental health professionals who became certified in the cards. She said:

“I’ve never seen this type of support for families presented this way. It’s so organized and accessible. It tells us exactly what to do and when. This is a game-changer!”

If you want to join me on this journey, please reach out! We can’t wait to hear from you or your organization. Cards for Connection© has been created for medical professionals, early educators, and educators and will soon be available via an online learning platform.

What are you waiting for? Let’s become champions in children’s lives.

P.S. If you have not already, be sure to check out my speaking and training page here!