Pennsylvania CASA Conference

Advocating for Outcomes: Advancing Child Advocacy through Storytelling and Data

Schedule of Events

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Tuesday, April 25, 2023

6:00 pm - 8:00 pm Evening Programming

Awards Dinner

Hilton Harrisburg

Tue 6:00 pm - 8:00 pm
225 max

Wednesday, April 26, 2023

8:00 am - 8:45 am Breakfast

Breakfast Buffet

Hilton Harrisburg

Wed 8:00 am - 8:45 am
225 max

9:00 am - 10:00 am Keynote Plenary Session

The Future of Storytelling for Social Impact: What Will Change, What Won't and Why it Matters

Professor John D. Trybus, Ph.D., Executive Director, Georgetown University’s Center for Social Impact CommunicationHilton Harrisburg

You may not consider yourself to be a storyteller, but you are. We cannot live through a single day without sharing stories and being influenced by them. The process of storytelling is one of the things that makes us uniquely human, and the telling, listening, and amplification of stories can and does create social impact. Yet, we must also evolve how we utilize this ancient form of connection in strategically modern ways in order to realize more ethical and equitable social impact through our work changing a child’s story across Pennsylvania. Join story scientist, Dr. John Trybus of Georgetown University, on a journey through the past, present, and future of storytelling for social impact.

Wed 9:00 am - 10:00 am
225 max

10:15 am - 11:45 am Morning Breakout Sessions

An Ecosystem Approach to Social Impact Storytelling

Professor John D. Trybus, Ph.D., Executive Director, Georgetown University’s Center for Social Impact CommunicationHilton Harrisburg

You heard a crucial message in the keynote: your work now and into the future on behalf of children is arguably most effective when it comes to life through story. But how exactly do we do that? Stories create “ecosystems” of action-driven impact when tended to properly, and this workshop will build upon the opening session to offer you tangible tools and practice in the art of story creation. You will learn a process for creating effective stories—and encouraging other voices to do the same through a commitment to equity and ethics—that fit into that strategic ecosystem to bring your work to life authentically. Dr. Trybus will coach you through hands-on activities on how to not only think but act as conveners of story ecosystems that create impact within our communities.

Wed 10:15 am - 11:45 am
50 max

Board Accountability for Performance and Continuous Improvement

Janet Unger, Unger Consulting ServicesHilton Harrisburg

Your governing board has ultimate corporate accountability yet only meets about 24 hours each year. How will we do it all? Monitoring organizational effectiveness is key to the board making well-informed strategic decisions. Some board members and board meetings get lost in the minutiae. How can we make better use of data to tell our CASA story to the board more succinctly? In this interactive session, we will discuss operational oversight, ensuring executive performance and board performance. You will receive practical pointers on the use of dashboard and scorecard reports. Leave this workshop inspired to engage your board in determining what information they need to make data-driven decisions and to identify areas for continuous improvement.

Wed 10:15 am - 11:45 am
32 max
Governance

Building Resilience in Youth and Families

MelissaRoshan (MelRo) PotterHilton Harrisburg

This workshop will share more on the ways in which trauma affects youth and families. A variety of healing modalities will be shared during the workshop that can be effective in addressing the needs of children and youth CASA serves. You will walk away with a clearer understanding of the impact of trauma and ways in which CASA can contribute to building resilience.

Wed 10:15 am - 11:45 am
60 max

Motivational Interviewing to Evoke Their Stories

Barbara Orr, M.S., Orr Training Services, LLCHilton Harrisburg

This workshop will introduce and explain the core skills and principles of Motivational Interviewing, an evidence-based communication proven to evoke more and truer information from others. We then apply these skills and principles to the task CASA volunteers have of evoking fuller, imperative information about a child or adolescent’s story in order that they can be helped and attended to in the most appropriate and useful way possible. Both didactic and practical application practice will be utilized in the workshop, with an emphasis on making this material as ‘user-friendly’, efficient, and practical as possible so that folks can leave the session with some level of confidence in immediately using what is learned.

Wed 10:15 am - 11:45 am
50 max

Telling the Story of Barriers to Care for LGBTQ+ Youth and Young Adults

Robin Gow (fae, it, he & él y elle), Director of the Education Institute, Bradbury-Sullivan LGBT Community CenterHilton Harrisburg

The presenters will share both quantitative and qualitative data collected by and for LGBTQ+ community members for the purpose of addressing barriers to care. After reviewing content from the 2022 Pennsylvania LGBTQ Health Needs Assessment, workshop participants will engage in a discussion about how barriers to care disproportionately impact people of different identities and how PA CASA staff and volunteers can best advocate for the youth they represent.

Wed 10:15 am - 11:45 am
32 max

The Power of Narratives and How Sharing them can Improve Outcomes for Youth

Cathy Moffa, MSS, MLSP (she/her), Youth Advocacy Program Senior Manager, Juvenile Law Center and Deszeree Elis Thomas, J.D., M.B.A., M.S.Ed (she/her/hers)Hilton Harrisburg

This dynamic session with multiple facilitators, including young leaders with lived experience in the foster care system, will focus on how story telling is essential for transformative advocacy and how professionals and adults need to take extra care and consideration when working with youth to talk about their experiences. The presenters will cover key research around adolescent and childhood development, a full explanation of narrative shaping and sharing, tools from the Youth Advocacy Program at Juvenile Law Center, and breakout sessions to troubleshoot working with clients to share their narrative in court.

Wed 10:15 am - 11:45 am
50 max

12:00 pm - 1:30 pm Lunch

Networking Lunch

Hilton Harrisburg

An opportunity to connect with each other, exchange contact information, and share stories with one another over a bite to eat before the afternoon sessions.

Wed 12:00 pm - 1:30 pm
225 max

Youth and Young Adult Panel

Panel of Youth and Young Adults; MelissaRoshan (MelRo) Potter: Panel ModeratorHilton Harrisburg

The Youth and Young Adult panel is a powerful and informative event that will highlight the voices of those with lived experience in the child welfare system and can speak to the importance of mentorship and supportive relationships like those developed with CASA volunteers. The panelists will draw from their own experiences to outline how mentors played a critical role in their lives, and how supportive relationships can make a significant difference in the lives of young people.

Wed 12:00 pm - 1:30 pm
225 max

1:45 pm - 3:15 pm Afternoon Breakout Sessions

An Ecosystem Approach to Social Impact Storytelling

Professor John D. Trybus, Ph.D., Executive Director, Georgetown University’s Center for Social Impact CommunicationHilton Harrisburg

You heard a crucial message in the keynote: your work now and into the future on behalf of children is arguably most effective when it comes to life through story. But how exactly do we do that? Stories create “ecosystems” of action-driven impact when tended to properly, and this workshop will build upon the opening session to offer you tangible tools and practice in the art of story creation. You will learn a process for creating effective stories—and encouraging other voices to do the same through a commitment to equity and ethics—that fit into that strategic ecosystem to bring your work to life authentically. Dr. Trybus will coach you through hands-on activities on how to not only think but act as conveners of story ecosystems that create impact within our communities.

Wed 1:45 pm - 3:15 pm
50 max

Cultural Competency and Humility

MelissaRoshan (MelRo) PotterHilton Harrisburg

This workshop will introduce definitions related to diversity, equity, and inclusion. Differences between being culturally competent and culturally humble will be explored with emphasis on the importance of cultural humility and how to apply it to your role within CASA. Disproportionality data will be presented so participants will gain an understanding of the overrepresentation of different groups within foster care and become more culturally aware, and prepared to advocate for all children and their unique backgrounds.

Wed 1:45 pm - 3:15 pm
60 max

It's a Two-Way Street: Embracing Our Board Role as Ambassadors for CASA

Janet Unger, Unger Consulting ServicesHilton Harrisburg

You joined the CASA board because you believe in the power of the work that we do. Board members play a unique role as ambassadors for CASA. In this session, we will explore what it means to be an effective ambassador by telling our stories about how CASA supports children and families involved in the child welfare system. The board ambassador role incorporates community outreach, fundraising, and advocacy. It also means bringing information back to the organization. No two of us will do this the same. What do Directors need to know to be effective CASA ambassadors? Learn small steps that can make a big difference in helping us expand our reach in supporting CASA initiatives.

Wed 1:45 pm - 3:15 pm
32 max
Governance

Motivational Interviewing to Evoke Their Stories

Barbara Orr, M.S., Orr Training Services, LLCHilton Harrisburg

This workshop will introduce and explain the core skills and principles of Motivational Interviewing, an evidence-based communication proven to evoke more and truer information from others. We then apply these skills and principles to the task CASA volunteers have of evoking fuller, imperative information about a child or adolescent’s story in order that they can be helped and attended to in the most appropriate and useful way possible. Both didactic and practical application practice will be utilized in the workshop, with an emphasis on making this material as ‘user-friendly’, efficient, and practical as possible so that folks can leave the session with some level of confidence in immediately using what is learned.

Wed 1:45 pm - 3:15 pm
50 max

Telling the Story of Barriers to Care for LGBTQ+ Youth and Young Adults

Robin Gow (fae, it, he & él y elle), Director of the Education Institute, Bradbury-Sullivan LGBT Community CenterHilton Harrisburg

The presenters will share both quantitative and qualitative data collected by and for LGBTQ+ community members for the purpose of addressing barriers to care. After reviewing content from the 2022 Pennsylvania LGBTQ Health Needs Assessment, workshop participants will engage in a discussion about how barriers to care disproportionately impact people of different identities and how PA CASA staff and volunteers can best advocate for the youth they represent.

Wed 1:45 pm - 3:15 pm
32 max

The Power of Narratives and How Sharing them can Improve Outcomes for Youth

Cathy Moffa, MSS, MLSP (she/her), Youth Advocacy Program Senior Manager, Juvenile Law Center and Deszeree Elis Thomas, J.D., M.B.A., M.S.Ed (she/her/hers)Hilton Harrisburg

This dynamic session with multiple facilitators, including young leaders with lived experience in the foster care system, will focus on how story telling is essential for transformative advocacy and how professionals and adults need to take extra care and consideration when working with youth to talk about their experiences. The presenters will cover key research around adolescent and childhood development, a full explanation of narrative shaping and sharing, tools from the Youth Advocacy Program at Juvenile Law Center, and breakout sessions to troubleshoot working with clients to share their narrative in court.

Wed 1:45 pm - 3:15 pm
50 max

3:30 pm - 4:00 pm Closing Session

Closing Session

Hilton Harrisburg

Today almost 250 advocates, staff, and board gathered together to amplify the powerful work of CASA across Pennsylvania to learn techniques to tell powerful stories. Now let's hear your stories, which were captured by a videographer during this event! Come see how these stories were woven together and watch the power of storytelling.

Wed 3:30 pm - 4:00 pm
225 max