October 2018, Issue 7

Sugar Rush

Witches, Warlocks, and Wizards, Oh My! Halloween is a favorite time of year for many. With this exciting time of year comes the challenges of moderating the sugar intake of children. Parents can get creative in moderating candy, one such idea is the Switch Witch. The Switch Witch can add a little more magic to an already exciting time of year, without the sugar rush!

Watch the video below on how sugar affects the brain.

National Coming Out Day

Thursday, October 11, is the 30th anniversary of National Coming Out day. This day was first observed to encourage people to “come out” as an LGBTQ individual or ally, as a means to encourage support for the community.

According to a 2012 study by the Williams Institute, nearly 40% of the homeless youth in the United States identify as LGBTQ. 46% of that population lists the reason of being homeless as “ran away because of family rejection.” When a child comes out as gay, lesbian, bisexual, or transgender it can be challenging to respond with understanding and empathy, while attempting to process the many emotions they may be experiencing. Here are some tips:

1. Thank your child for trusting you enough to tell you.

2. Tell your child that you love them.

3. Validate that you know they must have been thinking about this a long time.

4. Ask your child how you can support them.

5. Seek assistance for yourself in processing your own emotions.


PFLAG offers support for parents and families of the LGBTQ community.

1n10 offers support for LGBTQ youth throughout the state.

Trans Spectrum of Arizona offers support to transgender and gender non-conforming individuals and allies.

AZ Families Thrive Conference-Phoenix

October 25th, 2018 Redemption Church, 2150 E. Southern Ave, Tempe 85282

Earn Your Required Renewal Hours

Register now for the Phoenix AZ Families Thrive Conference. It will be held Thursday, October 25th at Tempe's Redemption Church. This is the third of three AZ Families Thrive Conferences hosted by the Department for licensed foster families and unlicensed kinship caregivers in 2018. Licensed foster parents who attend the entire day can receive 6 hours of advanced training credit that qualifies as their required renewal hours. While unlicensed kinship families are not required to take training, DCS believes that these trainings will be valuable and will help support their placement needs.

Participants will have the opportunity to hear from the keynote presenter Dr. Denise Goodman, PhD, ACSW, who has spent her career working with teens. Currently, Dr. Goodman is a self-employed consultant and trainer. She also serves as a technical assistant to The Annie E. Casey Foundation in the areas of recruitment, training, licensing and support of resource families. Break-out sessions will include topics such as implementing trauma-informed care, navigating the mental health system, and processing grief when a child leaves your home. During lunch there will be a panel of youth in care discussing various topics including the need for teens to be in foster homes.

Warmline Supports Kinship and Foster Families

The Foster Parent Warmline is available for kinship families and licensed foster parents. While not an emergency number, Warmline staff can assist with information, authorizations for services, timely communication, and support. It is not intended to discourage or replace direct and regular communication between the DCS Specialist and the out-of-home caregiver. You can reach the Warmline by calling 1-877-KIDSNEEDU (1-877-543-7633) and selecting Option 3. Warmline staff are available during business hours. Callers also have the option of leaving a voice message.

The Children's Heart Gallery features Arizona children who are free for adoption and want a forever family. While it is a very effective tool for finding families for our waiting children, it also makes the children vulnerable to negative intrusions into their lives. Please help us protect them. If you recognize any of these children or see them in your community, please respect their privacy.

Volunteer for the Children's Heart Gallery-Tucson

The Children's Heart Gallery (CHG) highlights Arizona children in need of forever homes and harnesses the power of photography to capture each child's unique spirit and story in a profile. The profiles are featured in exhibits online, in art galleries and in larger public forums like libraries, airports and malls. Heart Gallery exhibits have helped raise awareness about adoption and have helped find homes for hundreds of children.

Photo Shoot events are held several times throughout the year in Arizona. The events are a time for each child to have quality, professional photographs taken to create profiles for them. The next one will take place in Tucson September 22, 2018.

Biographer-Creates short biographical descriptions using questions provided.

Photographer-This position requires extensive professional experience as a photographer. Requires multiple high-resolution (we prefer 300 dpi) shots per child for publication in jpeg format (web site, print fliers, large posters, etc.).

Guide-There are two Guides assigned to each child. The Guides escort the children at the photo shoot and complete the biography questionnaire with the child.

Hair Stylist: This position requires a licensed cosmetologist with the ability to cut and style all types of children/teens' hair. There is a need for stylists proficient in working with African American and ethnic hair. All stylists are required to bring their own supplies.

Upon signup, additional event details will be provided. For questions or additional information, please email volunteer@azdcs.gov

Meet Aaron

Aaron is athletic and likes to play football, basketball and soccer. He also enjoys hiking and going on walks. Aaron will need a family who is going to take time out of their day, to go outside to play catch with him and ask him how his day was. He responds well to verbal praise and people who encourage him to be the best he can be. Aaron needs a family who will advocate and build up his confidence.

Meet Adah

Adah is a bright and engaging young lady who loves animals and hopes to be a veterinarian when she grows up. Her favorite animals are horses, dogs and cats.

She has wanted to become involved in gymnastics for a while now and would love to take lessons one day. Adah likes to sing as well and Taylor Swift is her favorite musical artist, but she loves all sorts of music.

Adah says she hopes her forever family will take her to gymnastics lessons and have a pet at home.

Adah was born in 2006.

Meet Chance & Sean

Meet the creative, curious, and inquisitive brothers Sean and Chance. A family that is patient and can also provide a strong routine would be very beneficial for these brothers.

Baby Shower & Teen Parent University

Teen Parent University is a one-day workshop for pregnant teens and teen parents to learn parenting skills, discover resources and pick up necessary baby items. If you are fostering a teen parent or pregnant teen who would like to attend please contact their DCS Specialist to submit their application. Additionally, the DCS Office of Prevention is seeking donations of items for the teen parents. If you would like to donate please see the Amazon wish list below.

Support #LoveUp Foundation & Foster Care

You can support an organization that supports foster care when you order online from Papa John’s Pizza. Use Promo Code LOVEUP and receive 40% off of your order. Papa Johns will donate 10% of your purchase to benefit #LoveUp. This offer is valid all year.

AZ Families Thrive is published monthly by the Arizona Department of Child Safety to inform foster, kinship and adoptive families across the state. Ricky Denwood created this edition, please feel free to email with questions, comments or content you may be interested in seeing in future editions. Sign up to receive email updates when new issues are posted.

Interested in becoming a foster or adoptive parent? Call us: 1-877-KIDS-NEEDU (1-877-543-7633) or email us: FosterAdoption@azdcs.gov. Visit us online: www.azkidsneedu.gov.

To report child abuse or neglect: 1-888-SOS-CHILD

Created By
Ricky Denwood

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