Between 2019 and early 2021, PACTS (Philadelphia Alliance for Child Trauma Services) and La Puerta Abierta (The Open Door) embarked on a partnership to provide cross-system training and professional support/consultation for those who are positioned to provide culturally, linguistically appropriate and trauma-informed services for more recently arrived immigrant minors and their families. While the partnership with PACTS continues, due to funding and other organizational shifts in mid-2021, LPA is now facilitating the Collaborative, building new partnerships and relationships into this new year.
Service providers across the Philadelphia region and beyond have been requesting additional support to best respond to the complex needs and challenges of newcomer immigrant youth. There are natural and predictable gaps in understanding and supports for these youth. In response, The Learning Collaborative was launched to serve as a collective space to deepen understanding and appreciation for the needs, strengths and challenges of newcomer and/or unaccompanied children, youth and their families, as well as to improve access to care through strategic and creative planning and implementation. Some basic themes of the Collaborative include the following:
- Focus on the unique and often unmet needs of newcomer and/or unaccompanied immigrant children and youth;
- Leverage the multidisciplinary makeup of the Collaborative to think more holistically/comprehensively about strategies for care;
- Emphasis on the development of skills to promote wellness and emotional wellbeing among youth; include youth to inform this process;
- Strive to strengthen communication, referral processes and networking among participants and organizations;
- Participation is based upon interest. It’s imperative to have a community of participants who are engaged, invested, and willing to be information “brokers” through this process.
The Learning Collaborative meets on the last Thursday of each month, from 3:15-4:30pm, via a virtual platform (zoom). Links are sent out to registered members.
A google doc and google group are maintained throughout the months as information sharing platforms for members.
If you would like to participate, please contact Julie McIntyre (Julie.McIntyre@LPA-theopendoor.org) and the registration information will be forwarded to you.