Youth-supporting local institutions work together to build a wider network to support youth in the region.

Forty local educators, social workers, nonprofit leaders and others serving youth recently visited New York City to see the award-winning musical “Dear Evan Hansen” on Broadway.

The musical tells the story of a teenage social group’s unraveling after the suicide of one of its members. The daylong event brought together adults from many youth-supporting local institutions to build a wider network to support youth in the region.

Participants included representatives from Talbot County Public Schools, the YMCA, Talbot Mentors, For All Seasons Inc., The Country School, Sts. Peter and Paul School, Chesapeake Multicultural Resource Center, Channel Marker, Chesapeake College, Eastern Shore Psychological Services, CASA (Court Appointed Special Advocates) and the Talbot County deputy state’s attorney. Dock Street Foundation sponsored the trip.

“Sometimes it’s not as easy as ‘it’s OK, things will get better.’ This musical reminds us from start to finish that everyone feels alone at some point, that we all struggle from time to time,” said Beth Anne Langrell, executive director of For All Seasons, a behavioral health and rape crisis center. “‘Dear Evan Hansen’ reminds us that our words, actions and who we are to each other can make a difference.

“This musical intersects every aspect of our culture, social media, peer pressure, depression, anxiety and the reality that relationships are hard work. It also reminds us that lies have consequences.”

Participants said the musical drove home the powerful impact one person can have on the life of a troubled teenager. Traveling together for the day allowed for discussions about how to address youth mental health and suicide in Talbot County comprehensively.

Suicide is the 10th leading cause of death in the US, with 144,793 Americans dying by suicide each year. And for every suicide, 25 attempts are made.

Suicide prevention efforts have increased in recent years across Maryland and across the Mid-Shore. In the five counties of the Mid-Shore (Kent, Queen Anne’s, Talbot, Dorchester and Caroline) in 2014, almost 15 percent of middle school students and 13 percent of high school students reported they seriously considered suicide at some point during the school year. Thirteen percent of those high school students went so far as to make a plan to kill themselves. The highest numbers of students reporting feeling suicidal are students who identify as gay, lesbian or bisexual.

“Having a chance to increase community awareness and to increase agency collaboration related to child and adolescent mental health needs and resources in Talbot County offers an opportunity to possibly change the trajectory of a young life,” said Robert Schmidt, behavior specialist at Talbot County Public Schools and a nationally known youth suicide expert. “This was an opportunity for community partners working with youth to increase skill development and understanding of the turbulent times of adolescence.”

Since the show, several of the organizations have been working together to build a community-wide campaign to address the needs of parents and youth surrounding stress and pressures of social media, depression, anxiety and suicide prevention. The new campaign will be launched before the start of the 2018-2019 school year.

For more information about this production and read the lyrics, visit

https://www.allmusicals.com/d/dearevanhansen.htm

Continue Reading

Community members working together benefit future successes.

When arriving at For All Seasons, you are greeted by a new look in the reception area. Sean Wilson from Boy Scout Troop 532 completed his Eagle project at For all Seasons main office on 300 Talbot Street in Easton.

The new flooring, paint, cabinets and counter are a stylish and friendly greeting to visitors in addition to being met by the friendly smile of the building receptionist, Lynda Koppelman.  “I am so very proud of my beautiful reception area!  And of the hard work and commitment by Sean that helped him achieve Eagle Scout,” Koppelman comments.

Sean attends the University of Maryland: Baltimore County, and is on scholarship with the Naval Reserve Officer Training Corp. This is the first year NROTC is on the UMBC Campus and in 2020 Sean will graduate with a Bachelor’s degree in Modern Russian Language and Linguistics, and be one of the first Marine Officers to commission from the University.

“I managed my entire Eagle Scout Project from start to finish including, planning, fundraising, and execution,” Wilson states. “Most of the money was raised from donations and a letter writing campaign. The entire project took over four months and would not have been possible without the help of Kitchen Creations, and Solid Tops countertop fabrication company. I recruited some volunteers from other scouts, personal and family friends. The project was finished in late March of 2016, then I received my Eagle Scout award and rank in June.”

For All Seasons Executive Director, Beth Anne Langrell declares, “As a community agency, we were overjoyed that when given the choice of many projects, Sean chose For All Seasons as his Eagle Scout Project. Not only did Sean provide a wonderful and functional work space for our staff, he also created a welcoming environment for the 2,500 clients that we serve. It’s service such as Sean’s that leaves a lasting impression and on our community. We are very proud of Sean’s accomplishments as he has moved on to UMBC and we are grateful for all that he’s provided to For All Seasons.”

Continue Reading

For All Seasons Offers Neurofeedback Therapy

This spring, For All Seasons has introduced neurofeedback therapy to its clients as a new service. The program was introduced to For All Seasons by Bob Patterson, who started the Able Brain Center in Chestertown, MD. Patterson, who has over 20 years of experience using neurofeedback with trauma patients retired and brought the program to For All Seasons in January 2017. He has been mentoring staff at For All Seasons since then to transition the new program to the agency.

According to Carly Vincent, LGSW, Program Coordinator, Mobile Crisis Stabilization Services at For All Seasons, neurofeedback therapy evaluates the ratio of a client’s brain wave frequencies to determine what stressors he or she may be experiencing that lead to certain behaviors.

*****She explains, “An imbalance or miscommunication between brainwaves in different parts of the brain can present as anxiety, depression, difficulty concentrating, and/or a variety of other symptoms. While it is typical to have both high and low brainwave frequencies interacting at once, finding a balance among these frequencies is the key to emotional regulation. Neurofeedback helps to facilitate this homeostatic relationship.”

After an initial assessment, therapists work with clients to identify four to five behaviors they want to address in the therapy. In the office, clients are then connected to an EEG machine where sensors are placed on targeted areas of the skull responsible for different behavioral functions. The therapist then observes the client’s brain waves on the computer screen as the client plays certain computer games. The client gets a beep to reward certain behaviors in the game. The goal is to help the client achieve better emotional regulation while playing the game. Vincent adds, “The games target different areas of the brain that help with specific behaviors. Through this therapy, clients can reduce compulsive behaviors and/or improve regulation of other extreme behaviors.”

According to Carol Strootman, LGSW, Therapist, For All Seasons, ““Trauma patients benefit from this type of therapy as it retrains the brain, making new pathways so that parts of the brain can communicate with each other.  The client realizes that new pathways are being formed when they start to feel changes in their ability to self- regulate their emotions.”

Neurofeedback therapy typically consists of 20 sessions which are scheduled twice a week. Each session is approximately 30 minutes long. Therapists at For All Seasons use neurofeedback in conjunction with psychotherapy. While the neurofeedback therapy is used across the life span, For All Seasons uses the therapy most with children and adolescents who may have ADHD or developmental trauma, as well as symptoms of anxiety and depression.

Both Vincent and Strootman completed an extensive training focusing on the implementation of neurofeedback in the clinical setting, which included a hands-on practicum. Their training has provided a solid foundation for the ongoing mentoring they are receiving from Bob Patterson as they work toward independent certification. Strootman comments, “Neurofeedback is recognized as one of the best practices for ADHD by the American Academy of Pediatrics.” She adds, “I have recommended it to someone with Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and she has been able to regulate her emotions better since using neurofeedback. Another person with inattentive ADHD and anxiety says she has been better able to focus in school since participating in this therapy. Her mother even reported that she began singing again like when she was younger.

Clients are paying for the neurofeedback therapy through grant funding and through self- pay options. For further information, contact For All Season at 410-822-1018. For the 24-Hour Crisis Hotline, call Toll-Free: 800-310-7273.

(Pictured left to right are Carol Strootman, LGSW, Therapist, For All Seasons, with Carly Vincent, LGSW, Program Coordinator, Mobile Crisis Stabilization Services at For All Seasons, demonstrating For All Seasons new neurofeedback therapy equipment.  Neurofeedback therapy evaluates the ratio of a client’s brain wave frequencies to determine what stressors he or she may be  experiencing that lead to certain behaviors.)

Continue Reading

Feature this month: Our new Human Trafficking Program headed by Lauren Gibson

Meet Lauren. She was recently hired as the Human Trafficking Program Coordinator at For All Seasons. She attended the University of DE graduating with a BA in Criminal Justice, minoring in Sociology and Women’s Studies. She obtained her master’s degree in 2010 in public administration also from the University of DE, concentrating on nonprofit leadership. She has a certificate in prevention leadership through EverFi. EverFi is the education technology innovator that empowers students in Kindergarten through 12th grade, higher education, and adult learners with the skills needed to be successful in life.

At the University of Delaware, she was inspired to learn more to help after taking a workshop on sexual assault and dating violence in the first semester of her freshmen year. She served as a victim advocate for the Sexual Offense Support (S.O.S.) victim advocacy and educational outreach group at the University. After graduating, she was hired to work for the same organization at UD that managed S.O.S. to serve as a Prevention Specialist where she oversaw prevention initiatives on the college campus around sexual assault, dating violence, and stalking. After her time at the University of Delaware, Lauren transitioned to Washington College to serve as the Director of Wellness and Prevention Education.

Gibson shares, “I started doing sexual assault advocacy and prevention when I joined Sexual Offense Support, a 24/7 crisis line and educational outreach program, at the University of Delaware during college. Since then, it has become my life’s purpose to work towards a world where sexual violence does not happen.  I have heard countless accounts from survivors of sexual assault about their assault, survival, and recovery. These accounts motivate me to work in partnership with others to ensure that there are quality services and resources for survivors, and to create a community where sexual violence does not exist. Coming to For All Seasons to do anti-human trafficking work is an extension of that calling. I look forward to partnering with the other Regional Navigators and service providers in Maryland to ensure we are doing everything we can to help victims of all forms of human trafficking.”

We welcomed Ms. Gibson to FAS in December 2016.  Her position is funded by a grant to be a regional navigator. As part of the grant, Lauren will work with other Regional Navigators in the state of Maryland to ensure there is a comprehensive approach to providing services and resources to victims of Human Trafficking.

Human trafficking has been an issue locally and nationally for many years, but came to the forefront in the state when Maryland first developed the law to prevent human trafficking in 2007.

Human trafficking begins with the recruiters targeting at risk individuals, both domestic and international victims.  Human trafficking involves labor and sex trafficking. Recruiting methods include promises for a better life for them or their family, wealth, and affection.  A predator targets individuals on their vulnerabilities, such as promises of care, money, and taking care of their family. But then once recruited, everything is controlled, including their identification documents, where they sleep and eat, and who they talk to. Everything possible is done to make the victims totally reliant on the predator, such as threats to harm loved ones or selves, and other coercive measures.

What is being done in our community? An Eastern Shore task force meets once a month. Their goal is to raise awareness in the Eastern Shore about human trafficking. Lauren highlights that partners are essential to educate the community in recognizing the signs of HT and learn what to do when reporting to law enforcement or the National Human Trafficking Hotline. Trainings can be done in bars, shelters restaurants, and schools where recruiting is likely to occur. Shelters are needed, there is currently no secure emergency shelter for human trafficking victims in this area and the closest is at the Life Crisis Center in Salisbury. There are also shelters across to bay bridge.

 

Lauren Gibson 5

Lauren Gibson

Continue Reading

For All Seasons honored at Caliber Award Luncheon

Continue Reading

Congratulations to For All Seasons clinician, Coleen Lynn

Coleen Lynn, a clinician at For All Seasons was nominated as a person who has made a tremendously positive impact on a child with special needs. Her actions have made a difference in the life of a child that will inspire them for a lifetime.  The Staff Appreciation Celebration was held at a Caroline County School, sponsored by the Caroline County’s Special education Citizens advisory committee.

Ms. Lynn is a school based clinician in the Caroline schools.  “Ms. Lynn gives me homework to work with my grandsons in a positive manner to encourage positive behavior and positive consequences and assist my grandchildren at home,” states Moo Ma, the child’s guardian.  Moo Ma continues to praise Ms. Lynn, “Coleen talks on their level, is respectful.  If there are any issues in the classroom, Coleen is there to assist. She connects with the kids. Ms. Lynn is the best choice for my grandsons Alden and Mitchell.”

 

 

Continue Reading

For All Seasons Celebrates Denim Day in Honor of Sexual Assault Awareness Month

On a Wednesday in April each year, Peace Over Violence celebrates Denim Day to raise awareness about sexual violence. April is chosen because it is Sexual Assault Awareness Month. This campaign was started when an Italian Supreme Court ruled that a sexual assault conviction be overturned because the justices felt that since the victim was wearing tight jeans, she must have helped her rapist remove her jeans, implying consent. The next day, women in Parliament came to work wearing jeans in solidarity.

For All Seasons participated in Denim Day as a symbol of solidarity with victims of sexual violence. It was the hope of Peace Over Violence that by wearing denim, people everywhere can make a statement of activism against the harmful misconceptions that surround sexual assault.

For All Seasons offers individual and group therapy, general, child and adolescent therapy, marriage and couples counseling, grief counseling, school-based mental health therapy, urgent care services, Rape Crisis Response, Rape Crisis Counseling and Support, 24-Hour English and Spanish Hotlines, and education and outreach programming. For further information about For All Seasons, call 410-822-1018. For the 24-Hour Crisis Hotline, call Toll-Free: 800-310-7273.  For further information about Denim Day, visit http://denimdayinfo.org.

Caption: Pictured front row kneeling, left to right, are Julie Crain, Susan Truitt, Beth Anne Langrell, and Nancy James. Second row, left to right, are Bonnie Thomas, Ivy Garcia, Rebecca Lepter, Yeslee Martinez, Jen Collins (kneeling), Lynda Koppelman, and Maureen Curtin. Back row, left to right, are Andrea Hammond, Kathy Langrell, Lois Bahr, Kathleen Traversari, Lisa Hymas, and Alberto Ardaya.

Continue Reading

For All Seasons Receives Community Impact Award from Talbot County Economic Development Commission

The Talbot County Economic Development Commission recently awarded its Community Impact Awards to some of the region’s most entrepreneurial and dynamic corporations, nonprofit organizations and individuals. The awards were part of the annual Commission’s Business Appreciation Breakfast hosted by the County’s Economic Development and Tourism office. The keynote address for the event was delivered by Lt. Governor Boyd Rutherford.

The Community Impact Awards were given to Easton-based companies Caloris Engineering, Inquiries, Inc. and The Whalen Company, as well as nonprofit For All Seasons and individual Diana Mautz, the community’s beloved sailing champion, philanthropist, and owner of the Carpenter Street Saloon in St. Michaels.

After being recognized for her agency’s outpatient mental health services, Beth Anne Langrell, Executive Director of For All Seasons, comments, “We were honored to be selected for the community impact award.  To know that a non-profit who works to create a healthier community through mental health, psychiatric and rape crisis services was selected, alongside these exceptional businesses and Diana Mautz, brings a spotlight to our team.” She adds, “We’ve expanded and more than doubled our employees in the past two years and our service area covers the five counties of the Mid Shore, serving over 2,500 members of our community.  It was a wonderful tribute to our team and a very important opportunity for the business community of Talbot County to understand who we are and the people who we serve.”

For All Seasons offers individual and group therapy, general, child and adolescent therapy, marriage and couples counseling, grief counseling, school-based mental health therapy, urgent care services, Rape Crisis Response, Rape Crisis Counseling and Support, 24-Hour English and Spanish Hotlines, and education and outreach programming. For further information about For All Seasons, call 410-822-1018. For the 24-Hour Crisis Hotline, call Toll-Free: 800-310-7273.

Caption: Pictured left to right are Ryan Snow, Project Manager, Department of Economic Development and Tourism; Jenny Jarrell, Associate Clinical Director, For All Seasons; Lisa Roth Billing & Credentialing Specialist, For All Seasons; Beth Anne Langrell, Executive Director, For All Seasons; Lt. Governor Boyd Rutherford,  Julie Crain, Victim Advocate & Community Outreach Educator,  For All Seasons; Rebecca Lepter, Director of Grants & Contracting, For All Seasons; and Bonnie Thomas, Finance Manager, For All Seasons.

Continue Reading

Coping with Trauma

Posted by For All Seasons, Inc. on Thursday, June 1, 2017

Posted by For All Seasons, Inc. on Thursday, June 1, 2017

Posted by For All Seasons, Inc. on Thursday, June 1, 2017

Continue Reading

For All Seasons in the Community

Several staff from For All Seasons gave a suicide prevention presentation at Lockerman Middle School to the after school students through Rec and Parks. “We were asked to talk about Suicide prevention and link it to what teens are learning from the show Thirteen Reasons Why. We talked about identifying someone who may need help and how you can help someone who may show signs of being suicidal”, states Coleen Lynn, a Clinician with For All Seasons.

Thirteen Reasons Why, is a 2007 young adult novel written by Jay Asher. The book is the basis of the television series on Netflix in March 2017.

 

Pictured: Dr. Dimas Morales Psychiatrist with For All Seasons, Carly Vincent, clinician at For All Seasons,  Stacey Gardner from the After School Program, and  For All Seasons clinician, Coleen Lynn.

Continue Reading