Georgia’s 2023 Conference on Child Abuse and Neglect
From Prevention to Intervention
September 14 at the Hilton Peachtree City Conference Center
We are so grateful to all the presenters, sponsors and the almost 400 conference attendees for contributing to this year’s Georgia Conference on Child Abuse and Neglect. Prevent Child Abuse Georgia, Stephanie V. Blank Center for Safe and Healthy Children at Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta, and the Georgia Center for Child Advocacy are grateful to have provided this educational resource, and have made many of the conference workshop resources publicly available.
Thank you for being part of our WHY, as we continue to promote prevention and strengthening families.
Stay tuned for announcements on the 2024 conference by signing up for our newsletter here.
- View conference agenda and access workshop presentation and handouts
- Conference photo album
- Read the 2023 conference recap here
- Encore presentation: When Home is Where the Hurt Is: An Exploration of Family Facilitated CSEC. Virtual webinar on November 8 at 1 p.m.
- Encore presentation: Motherhood Beyond Bars: Supporting Families Impacted by Maternal Incarceration. Virtual webinar on January 23 at 10 a.m.
Mark Chaffin Community Award 2023 Recipients
This award is given in honor of the life and legacy of Dr. Mark Chaffin. Dr. Chaffin was a leader in the field of child maltreatment prevention research. It recognizes individuals who have made repeated, significant, and outstanding contributions and commitment to the prevention of child abuse and neglect in Georgia.
“Because of your engagement, we have a strong foundation on which to build. Your support made all the difference in setting us on a path to success!”
Steve Collins is the founder and president of Adults Protecting Children, Inc., a non-profit organization committed to helping adults and organizations make better choices and diminish risk factors that make children vulnerable to abuse. Before retiring at the end of 2022, Steve served for 12 years as the Region 2 Coordinator for Northeast Georgia for the Georgia Center for Child Advocacy Center. As the first regional coordinator he developed the strategy to build community coalitions in an effort to promote prevention education. He provided guidance and training, and helped motivate communities to reach a “tipping point” by training 5% of the adult population. Not only was he successful in leading 10 of his 13 counties to that tipping point, his region was the first and only to this day that has reached a region-wide tipping point, over 30,000 adults.
Steve is a distinguished certified instructor of numerous programs and has personally trained over 6,000 individuals in abuse prevention education nationally and internationally. He was the 2016 recipient of Hall County Crime Victims’ Award for serving the most vulnerable victims. Beyond being a sought-after trainer, Steve’s expertise is in working with faith communities to develop child protection policies and procedures and a plan for implementing training. Prior to his role at the Georgia Center, he worked as the Director of Spiritual Life with Mission to the World for 17 years where he was responsible for the care and nurture of individuals and families serving overseas, including child protection. His passion and contributions to the field have inspired so many.
Kathy Brown-Bragg, MSW, LCSW, MAC, has been the Project Director for CHRIS 180’s New Generations program since its inception in 2019. New Generations is an Infant and Early Childhood Mental Health Program that equips parents and caregivers with what they need to build stronger relationships with children so children can feel safe, supported and valued.
Kathy, with decades in the behavioral health field, joined CHRIS 180 to create, lead and direct this innovative program that focuses on intervention and prevention work with traumatized young children and their families. The intent is to help families move beyond their trauma to avoid maladaptive patterns that often lead to family disruption, legal involvement and further traumatization. Trauma changes brain development and cognitive development in young children, so the team utilizes a wraparound service model to provide everything a child and their caregivers need through a team-based approach that includes a care coordinator, therapist, behavior aide and nurse. For instance, care coordinators act as the “bus driver” for the team and handle all needs – from food insecurity to transportation issues.
Kathy’s leadership and supervision allow teams to help families connect with children and families, work to strengthen parenting skills, equip parents and other caregivers to help children thrive, provide individualized community-based support services focused on family strengths and provide classroom support.
Stan Sonu, MD, MPH, is an Assistant professor of Internal Medicine and Pediatrics at Emory University School of Medicine and the Associate Program Director for the Emory J. Willis Hurst Internal Medicine Residency program at Grady Health System. His research interests include adverse childhood experiences (ACEs), trauma-informed care, advancing health equity, and addressing social determinants of health in clinical care settings. He is a passionate ACEs educator and is engaged in efforts to build community consensus around responding to and preventing ACEs through cross-sector approaches.
Dana Suskind, MD, has dedicated her research and clinical life to optimizing foundational brain development and preventing early cognitive disparities and their lifelong impact. Her work is focused on helping parents leverage their power as brain architects. Dr. Suskind is the author of “Parent Nation: Unlocking Every Child’s Potential, Fulfilling Society’s Promise” and “Thirty Million Words: Building a Child’s Brain.” She is also the Founder and Co-Director of the TMW Center for Early Learning + Public Health and a Professor at the University of Chicago. Her work has been profiled by numerous media outlets, including the New York Times, The Economist, Forbes, NPR, and Freakonomics.
Day One: September 14
Day Two: September 15
- Special Topics in Mandated Reporting
- The Importance of Parent Partnerships
- Keeping Children Safe in a Digital World
- Understanding the Implications of Georgia’s Mental Health Parity Act
- Day Two Keynote: Parent Nation by Dr. Suskind (available until October 7, 2022)
2021 Conference Workshop Recordings and Materials
There is NO CEU credit available watch recorded workshops from the links below.
When the Village Falls Apart: Lessons Learned from the COVID Pandemic
Presenters: Angie Boy, DrPH, Program Manager, Prevention and Training at Stephanie V. Blank Center for Safe and Healthy Children, Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta
Cheryl Galloway-Benefield, EdS, Mental Health and Wellbeing Coordinator, Georgia Department of Education
The Demand Side of the Commercial Sexual Exploitation of Children
Presenter: Michelle Price, Human Trafficking Compliance Officer, Criminal Justice Coordinating Council
When Prevention Fails
Presenter: Stephen A. Messner, MD, FAAP, Child Abuse Pediatrician, Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta
Angie Boy, DrPH, Program Manager, Prevention and Training at Stephanie V. Blank Center for Safe and Healthy Children, Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta
Mindful Relationships: Looking Beneath the Surface
Presenter: Erica Goldthorp and Denise Payton, ProSolutions
Day One Keynote: The Science and Art of Effective Framing
Presenter: Lynn Davey, Ph.D., Davey Strategies
Racism, Anti-Racism, and the Social Ecology
Presenters: Cailin O’Connor, MS, Senior Associate at Center for the Study of Social Policy
Charlyn Harper Brown, PhD, Senior Associate at Center for the Study of Social Policy
- Using an Anti-Racist Intersectional Framework from CSSP
- AAP: The Impact of Racism on Child and Adolescent Health
Prevention in Policy
Presenter: Polly McKinney, Director of Advocacy, Voices for Georgia’s Children
Is That Normal? Healthy Sexual Development in Children
Presenter: Verena Brown, MD, Child Abuse Pediatrician, Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta
Day Two Keynote: Save the Family: The Unspoken Effects of Family Separation
Presenter: Angela Quijada-Banks
2020’s Virtual Conference
September 16 – October 1, 2020
See Recordings and Materials for Each Session Below
A Vision for Child and Family Well-being in Georgia, Our State’s Child Abuse and Neglect Prevention Plan was released at the 2020 conference, resulting from a year long development process that included input and feedback from over 1,000 Georgians.
From Safety Net to Solid Ground: Policy Opportunities to Advance Economic Mobility in Georgia, Alex Camardelle, Senior Economic Mobility Policy Analyst at the GA Budget and Policy Institute
Technical Colleges & Economic Development, Dr. Alvetta Thomas, President of the Southern Crescent Technical College and Adie Shimandle, Director of Technical College Directors’ Association
Abuse Prevention and Awareness
Using Community Data in Your Prevention Strategy, Tommy Pearce and David Giguere, Neighborhood Nexus
Preventing Child Sexual Abuse in Youth Serving Organizations: Collaborating to Inform the Current and Future Direction of Prevention
Family Mental and Physical Health
A Case-Based Presentation to Recognize Child Abuse and Neglect, Drs. Verena Brown & Tamika Bryant of CHOA
Epigenetics and Generational Trauma, Dr. Brian Dias, Assistant Professor at the Yerkes National Primate Center and Emory University