Sarah Pauter is the founder and CEO of Phenomenal Families, a nonprofit organization that provides pregnant and parenting youth in foster care and juvenile probation access to education and other resources which promote healthy relationships, sexual development, and positive parenting skills. After spending 17 years in the child welfare system before ultimately emancipating, Sarah earned a Bachelor’s in Social Work from San Diego State University and a Master’s in Public Policy and Administration from Northwestern University. Sarah has dedicated her life and career to improving outcomes for vulnerable children and youth, even testifying before Congress and the California Senate on mental health treatment options for young people in foster care. Sarah was previously a Trauma-Informed Systems Transformation Specialist with the Chadwick Center for Children and Families where she co-led the development of the Child Welfare Trauma Training Toolkit (3rd ed.). Her skills include partnering with children, youth, and families, policy formulation and implementation, and stakeholder engagement.
This listing of NCTSN members includes current grantees as well as NCTSN Affiliates, former grantees who have maintained their ties to the Network.
Pauter, Sarah, MPPA
Penfield Children's Center, Inc.
Trauma-Informed Care for Very Young Children in Poverty Project (TIC-YC) is a collaboration of Penfield Children’s Center, a Birth-to-Three agency, and Marquette University, both of which are located in the central city of Milwaukee WI. The Behavior Clinic, the home of TIC-YC, was founded in 2003 to provide in-home, mental health services to children 5 years of age and younger with significant behavior and emotional problems. Referrals come from over 80 community agencies, individual service providers (e.g., pediatricians, public health nurses, social workers), and parents. The two primary goals of TIC-YC are: (1) provide trauma-informed care to children, 0-5, most of whom live in poverty and (2) increase local capacity to serve these children through: a. service agreements with other local agencies and schools to provide integrated care for traumatized young children; b. training teachers and other individuals who work daily with these children to recognize trauma symptoms, have knowledge of available trauma-related services, and refer these children’s families to appropriate service providers; and c. training community-based professionals to become competent to deliver the Early Pathways (EP) Program. EP integrates improving parent-child relationships, teaching cognitive-behavioral strategies within a sound developmental framework, and incorporating current trauma research to provide caregivers with practical tools taught within a flexible and hands-on format in the familiar setting of the children’s homes. EP was recognized as an evidence-based program by SAMHSA’s National Registry of Evidence-Based Programs and Practices and as highly relevant to the child welfare system by the California Evidence- Based Clearinghouse.
Pfefferbaum, Betty, MD, JD
Betty Pfefferbaum was the former Director of the Terrorism and Disaster Center at the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center. She is now retired but remains professionally active.
Philadelphia Department of Behavioral Health and Intellectual Disability Services
The Philadelphia Alliance for Child Trauma Services II (PACTS)has been awarded a 5 year (October 1st 2016 to September 30th 2021) Community Treatment Center (Category III) grant by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (S.A.M.H.S.A.) through a National Child Traumatic Stress Initiative. PACTS: Reaching the Most Vulnerable Youth is a child and adolescent behavioral and physical health system-wide trauma universal screening, education, prevention and intervention program, with a focus on the most vulnerable and underserved youth: young children (2-6 years old); Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Questioning (LGBTQ) youth; Commercially Sexually Exploited Children (CSEC); and intentionally injured youth (IY). We will primarily serve children eligible for Medicaid( which is a large percentage of the population of children in Philadelphia) under the age of 18 as well as transitional youth ages 18-21 in these populations. We have selected 3 trauma-specific evidence-based practices to serve our youth and families: Trauma-Focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy(TF-CBT); Child and Family Traumatic Stress Intervention(CFTSI) and the Child and Adult Relationship Enhancement(CARE) group parenting training. We will partner with the following child-service systems: Child Welfare, Juvenile Justice, Physical Health, School District of Philadelphia, Crisis Response, Faith Based and Grass-roots organizations.
Pollard, Sara, PhD
Sara Pollard completed a postdoctoral psychology fellowship with the Georgia Child Traumatic Stress Initiative (GCTSI), an NCTSN Category III center and collaboration between Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta and Emory University School of Medicine. During this fellowship, she developed expertise in Trauma-Focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, and Parent-Child Interaction Therapy. Additionally, Dr. Pollard delivered webinars on suicide, self-injury, and cultural issues in maltreated children. She now works in an integrated primary care clinic for children in foster care, and has been integrating the NCTSN's Resource Parent Curriculum with Triple P for foster and adoptive parents. She is especially interested in network projects related to integrated care, foster care, and cultural and systems issues.
Providence Children and Youth Cabinet
Providence’s Children and Youth Cabinet is the backbone entity for the city’s collective impact work, convening multiple systems, stakeholders and partners to identify shared priorities for child wellbeing and implement quality programs to improve outcomes for children and youth. Through a school-based continuum of services, the Building Trauma Sensitive Schools initiative addresses the high levels of trauma experienced by adolescents. By leveraging partnerships among residents and systems and building on an established framework for setting joint priorities and implementing proven programs, we ameliorate youth trauma in some of the most challenged schools in the most challenged neighborhoods of Providence, Rhode Island. Our continuum of services includes the following: (1) establishing rates of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder in youth (data that is currently scarce or unavailable); (2) implementing socially and culturally relevant evidence-based programs, primarily Cognitive Behavior Intervention for Trauma in Schools; (3) enhancing youth, community, and family engagement in therapeutic programs with innovative performance arts programming; (4) building trauma-sensitive practice across the school system through training and professional development; and (5) magnifying the issue of youth trauma to the policy and decision-making level at the School District to promote adoption of trauma-sensitive policies.
Public Health Institute
In collaboration with the Asian Health Services (AHS), the Health Intervention Projects for Underserved Populations (HIPUP), Public Health Institute (PHI) will implement the Trauma Informed Programs for Asian Communities (TIPAC) that aims to provide trauma-informed treatment and other services to reduce mental health and behavioral problems (e.g., substance use) and promote health and well-being for Asian Americans and immigrants in Alameda County, CA. TIPAC will target Asian children (6 to 18 years old) and their families who have had traumatic experiences due to refugee/immigration/relocation process, child abuse, and other traumatic events (e.g., exposure to war and disaster). In collaboration with local CBOs and the Public Health Department, we will conduct community and online outreach and recruit the targeted Asian children and families who are suffering from trauma. We will provide evidence-based and culturally appropriate trauma-informed treatment and other programs (e.g., Asian youth community empowerment) and evaluate the efficacy of TIPAC on the targeted health outcomes. We will also facilitate system level changes in child-serving systems to improve access, use, and outcomes of trauma-informed treatment and other services in the San Francisco Bay area. Results of the process and outcome evaluation will be reported to SAMHSA and the targeted Asian communities through community forums and newsletters. Through direct individual and system level interventions, TIPAC will have a significant impact on increasing access, use, and outcomes of trauma-informed treatment and other services for Asian children and families who are suffering from trauma but have been neglected by mental health and other service providers.
Puccia, Ellen, PhD
Ellen Puccia is an evaluator with projects in child trauma and welfare as well as education. She has experience administering learning collaboratives in evidence-based practices for child trauma as well as for community partners. As an anthropologist, Ellen is also a expert in qualitative research methods.
Ralston, "Libby" M. Elizabeth, PhD
Elizabeth Ralston, PhD was the founding director of the Dee Norton Lowcountry Children’s Center, Inc. (DNLCC) an accredited Children’s Advocacy Center located in Charleston, South Carolina and, since her retirement in 2012, has served as their Director Emeritus.
Dr. Ralston is on the clinical faculty of the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Science at the Medical University of South Carolina. She has served on the National Children’s Alliance (NCA) Board of Directors and the NCA mental health standard revision committee, and participated in the partnership between NCA and NCTSN to develop the CAC Director’s Guide to Mental Health services. She currently serves as the vice chair of the South Carolina Children’s Justice Act Task Force.
Dr. Ralston served as the project director when DNLCC was designated as a Level III Center 2008, and implemented a community-based learning collaborative in the Charleston area in the provision of evidence-supported treatment for children with sexual behavior problems funded through SAMSHA. She has served as the co-director of Project BEST since 2007. This project, funded by the Duke Endowment, is a partnership between MUSC and NCVRC, and has developed and utilized a community based learning collaborative coordinated through Children’s Advocacy Centers.
The goal of Project BEST is to increase the availability of evidence-based treatment to the children of South Carolina by training community mental health professionals in the delivery of trauma-focused cognitive behavioral therapy with fidelity, and training community treatment brokers to do evidence-based treatment planning and case management.
In 2013, Project BEST was expanded to the South Carolina Trauma Practice Initiative, a partnership between the Duke Endowment, the Dee Norton Lowcountry Children’s Center, the National Crime Victims Center at the Medical University of South Carolina, the South Carolina Department of Mental Health, and the South Carolina Department of Social Services. The goal of SCTPI is to increase to 100% the number of professionals trained through PB by training the majority of clinicians, supervisors, and senior leaders within the public mental health system, as well as caseworkers, supervisors, and senior leaders within the child welfare system. This project is expected to significantly increase the availability of evidence-based practice to the children of South Carolina and also to increase the collaboration between mental health and child welfare professionals, with the ultimate goal of improving outcomes for abused/traumatized children and their families in South Carolina.
Reagan, Laura, LCSW-C
Laura Reagan, LCSW-C is an integrative trauma therapist and the owner of The Baltimore Annapolis Center for Integrative Healing. Laura and her team use trauma-focused therapy techniques in work with children, adolescents and adults.