Honouring the Family Experience in Systems
Honouring the Family Experience in Systems is a presentation that details what it is like to be a parent trying to navigate complex systems of care. This workshop has been presented to students in Education programs at Trinity Western University and the University of the Fraser Valley. Karen provides students with an opportunity to practice curiousity, as she shares her service journey map and encourages questions from the group. Karen also provides information on what families find to be helpful and hindering when it comes to building relationships with professionals. Participants will also be provided with an extensive list of mental health resources as well as a listing of inspirational educators and advocates from across Canada.You can read more about this presentation in the blog post: Learning Together, Trusting Each Other.
“Thanks again for sharing with our class on Wednesday Karen, it was truly a very touching and inspirational message. I’m sure I can speak for all the other students in that classroom along with myself that you have opened our eyes to being more understanding, and more inspired to create these types of relationships in our future classrooms. Not only did you create awareness, but gave tangible advice and tools to implement in the future.” AP, Student
Finding My Courage, Becoming A Champion
Finding My Courage, Becoming a Champion details Karen’s journey to finding her voice and learning how to advocate for her child. The purpose of the presentation is to create broader awareness and understanding of the difficulties families experience navigating systems, the importance of curiousity and how to shift towards a more positive outlook and discover resiliency. In this presentation, Karen shares how she started out as a person who did not know how to speak up to becoming “that” parent who now speaks loudly in support of children, youth and families in our communities.
Start with Strengths: Change the Lens, Change the Story
Co-Presented with Chris Wejr, Administrator, Langley School District
What happens when we shift away from focusing on our kids’ challenges towards exploring and honouring their strengths? How can curiousity and storytelling strengthen relationships between our children, youth, families and community? Learn how to move away from focusing on all the things we can’t do and find out how celebrating the things we CAN do makes a huge difference for our children, families and school communities.
“Start with Strengths is a heart-felt presentation full of real life examples lived by Karen and Chris. Their willingness to be vulnerable and share their experiences as parent and educator is a great example for us all. I appreciated how they both shared their journeys, their struggles and what they have learned about first starting with student strengths and building positive student-parent-teacher relationships.” MH, Educator
The Power of Relationships
Co-Presented with Laurie Schulz, Expression Counselling
We all know the importance of creating positive relationships with students and their families, this is even more critical when a child or youth is experiencing challenges. In The Power of Relationships Karen and Laurie will share their experiences on how positive relationships have made a difference for families and professionals in their community. Participants will leave having a better understanding of the different steps they can take to build stronger relationships with children, youth, caregivers and professionals in their lives.
“I walked into ‘The Power of Relationships’ workshop with a certain way of doing and seeing things, but after participating in Karen and Laurie’s session, I walked out with a new, simple and clear way of interacting with others. It was empowering for myself and those I interacted with. A wonderful tool to help with family, friend and client relationships.” JF, Recreation Therapist
“This presentation should be available to any person working with students in an educational setting. An exceptional eye opening experience.” BR, Child Care Worker
Service Journey Mapping for Youth and Families
Youth and families are often asked to share their story multiple times to multiple services. The service journey map is a visual tool that can be used to empower youth and families to share their story in a meaningful and powerful way with professionals. This session will provide participants with information on how to create a high impact, visual representation of their service journey that can then be used in future meetings with professionals.
Bridging the Gap: Connecting Families and Professionals
Panel Presentation, Co-Facilitated with Laurie Schulz, Expression Counselling
The Bridging the Gap: Connecting Families and Professionals panel is an opportunity for professionals to hear from parents and caregivers about their experiences navigating systems of care. The panel session is very structured to create a safe environment for sharing. The panel participants undergo extensive preparation in advance of the session to ensure a thorough understanding of the purpose of the presentation. Panelists are encouraged to provide responses with a strengths-based lens. Questions for panelists are collected in advance from professionals. To learn more about this panel, please read Creating Safe Spaces for Voices to Be Heard.
“We learn a lot from academics that doesn’t even begin to touch on what you have taught me today.” Social Worker who attended panel