Save the Date
Virtual Conference Series Launch
September 16, 2020
More Dates, Times, and Workshop Specifics Coming Soon
PCA Georgia is partnering with the Stephanie V. Blank Center for Safe and Healthy Children at Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta to bring you Georgia’s Virtual Conference Series on Child Abuse and Neglect. Whether you work on the community level, treat individual patients, or support families through difficult times, we all witness the impact of maltreatment through the lens of our professional roles. Join over professionals from across the state as we virtually gather for innovative workshops that aim to prevent, intervene, and treat children and families impacted by child maltreatment. A Vision for Child and Family Well-being in Georgia, Our State’s Child Abuse and Neglect Prevention Plan is being released this summer, resulting from a year long development process that included input and feedback from over 1,000 Georgians.
The plan highlights specific domains, listed below, which will be the focus of this year’s conference.
- Family Economic Stability
- Family Resiliency
- Access to Early Childhood Education
- Family Mental and Physical Health
- Community Knowledge/Awareness of Societal Factors that Contribute to Child Abuse and Neglect
Georgia’s Virtual Conference Series on Child Abuse and Neglect: from Prevention to Intervention
10 am- Noon
10 am: Kickoff Keynote
Dr. Melissa Merrick is President and CEO of Prevent Child Abuse America with nearly 20 years of clinical, research, and leadership experience related to the etiology, course, and prevention of child abuse and neglect.
Previously, Dr. Merrick was a senior epidemiologist at the National Center for Injury Prevention and Control at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), in Atlanta, and served on a detail in the Office of the Commissioner at the Children’s Bureau in the Administration for Children and Families. She served as the lead scientist for the Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACE) study at CDC for 8 years. Dr. Merrick successfully leverages her clinical and research experiences to communicate and disseminate the critical public health importance of preventing early adversity to key stakeholders with diverse priorities, backgrounds, and knowledge, including legislators, business and civic leaders, and members of the academic and medical communities. Dr. Merrick is married and has two young children who keep her grounded, thankful, and hopeful for a brighter future for all children.
10:45 am: A Vision for Child and Family Well-being in Georgia, Our State’s Child Abuse and Neglect Prevention Plan
Leaders from across Georgia’s state departments and nonprofit agencies joined with the Prevention and Community Support Section (DFCS) and Prevent Child Abuse Georgia to update the state’s Child Abuse and Neglect Prevention Plan. This is a collaborative effort that represents all of the agencies, organizations, and individuals who want to see a decrease in Georgia’s child maltreatment rates. When we come together with a common cause, we can make important conditions a reality. State leaders will present on the plan’s five overarching goals and how organizations and individuals can support the prevention of child abuse and neglect.
Family Mental and Physical Health
1 pm – 3:30 pm
1 pm: A Case-Based Presentation to Recognize Child Abuse and Neglect
Drs. Verena Brown & Tamika Bryant of Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta
2:30 pm: Epigenetics and Generational Trauma
Dr. Brian Dias is an assistant professor at the Yerkes National Primate Research Center and Emory University School of Medicine. He has conducted years of research on the science of generational stress/trauma in mammals, seeking to understand how stress or trauma impacts mammalian neurobiology, physiology and reproductive biology, and how parental legacies of stress or trauma influence offspring. Armed with this understanding, Dr. Dias and his team aim to devise treatment interventions to lessen the effects of stress or trauma in both ancestral and descendant populations.
1 pm – 3:30 pm
1 pm: Building Family Resilience
Cailin O’Connor, Senior Associate at the Center for the Study of Social Policy, works to promote better outcomes for young children and their families, with a focus on promoting the protective factors that children, families, and communities need to thrive. She supports communities to build early childhood systems that support early learning and development through our EC-LINC network and our Early Learning Nation project and coordinates the Strengthening Families National Network.
-Save the Date for 2021-
We look forward to seeing everyone in-person for next year’s conference on September 16, 2021 at the Stone Mountain Evergreen Marriott Conference Resort.
View Past Conference Information
In 2019 the conference focused on promoting safe, stable and nurturing relationships and environments to prevent child abuse and neglect to over 380 conference participants. According to the CDC’s Essentials for Childhood, safety, stability and nurturing can be defined as follows:
- Safety: The extent to which a child is free from fear and secure from physical or psychological harm within their social and physical environment.
- Stability: The degree of predictability and consistency in a child’s social, emotional, and physical environment.
- Nurturing: The extent to which a parent or caregiver is available and able to sensitively and consistently respond to and meet the needs of their child.
Gregory Ellison II, Ph.D. Once you see. You cannot not see.
An Atlanta native, Ellison is associate professor of pastoral care and counseling at Emory University’s Candler School of Theology. He earned his undergraduate degree from Emory, and holds M.Div. and Ph.D. degrees in pastoral theology from Princeton Theological Seminary. Ellison is author of Fearless Dialogues: A New Movement for Justice and Cut Dead But Still Alive: Caring for African American Young Men and founder of GE II & Associates and Fearless Dialogues.
Fearless Dialogues is comprised of a team of educators, activists, healers, artists, connectors, and neighbors committed to seeing the invisible, hearing the voiceless, and creating spaces for social change.
Prevent Child Abuse Georgia and the Stephanie V. Blank Center for Safe and Healthy Children at Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta partnered again to coordinate the Georgia Conference on Child Abuse and Neglect: from Prevention to Intervention. Over 300 participants from child and family serving organizations across Georgia learned about emerging practices and research that focused on the prevention of Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACES). If you are interested in joining the Georgia ACEs conversation visit the Georgia ACEs Connection. This online group is an action-based social network for individuals, sectors, and communities that are utilizing the ACEs science to implement trauma-informed and resilience-building practices and policies.
Thanks for joining us at the 2018 Conference! View highlights and photos here.
Keynote Speaker: Robert Sege, MD, PhD
Robert Sege, MD, PhD, speaks passionately about the new and positive model for raising healthy children and preventing Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACES) including violence, bullying, abuse, and neglect. He explains that the key to preventing violence is to promote resilience, which is developed through strong relationships with family and community.
This conference featured many prevention focused workshop topics for those who work in a multi-disciplinary setting. The 2017 keynote speaker was Dr. Donna Beegle, a poverty expert and recognized author.
The 2016 Keynote Speaker was Dr. David Finkelhor, a preeminent violence epidemiologist. Dr. Finkelhor is the Director of the Crimes against Children Research Center, Co-Director of the Family Research Laboratory and Professor of Sociology at the University of New Hampshire. He is editor and author of 11 books and over 150 journal articles and book chapters. Some of his best-known publications include, “Sourcebook on Child Sexual Abuse” and “Nursery Crimes.” Dr. Finkelhor has received grants from the National Institute of Mental Health, the National Center on Child Abuse and Neglect, and the US Department of Justice, and a variety of other sources.Click here for more information on the work of Dr. Finkelhor and the Crimes Against Children Research Center.