The Child Advocacy Center of Niagara, a service of Niagara Falls Memorial Medical Center, has announced the faculty and program for the 19th annual Safe at Home Conference to be held Thursday, Oct. 12, at The Conference & Event Center Niagara Falls.
James Hopper, Ph.D., a nationally recognized consultant, trainer and lecturer on the neurobiology of trauma, will keynote the event. His presentation, titled "Sexual Assault: Brain Experience, Behavior and Memory," will explain how brain responses to sexual assault shape survivor experiences, behaviors and memory.
He also will present workshops that address the unique experiences and challenges of traumatized men, and interventions for trauma that cultivate mindfulness, compassion and bodily awareness.
Hopper has trained therapists, police officials, prosecutors, judges, higher education administrators and others across the nation, helping them better understand and respond to victims of sexual assault and child abuse.
"As professionals, we need to be informed regarding current issues and realities such as the effects of post-traumatic stress disorder, suicide among youth and professionals, child trafficking and effectively engaging clients," Child Advocacy Center of Niagara Director Ann Marie Tucker said. "Our expert faculty will assist participants in gaining knowledge and perspective on prevention, intervention and client engagement to assist children and adults experiencing family violence and trauma."
Other presenters include:
•Cattaraugus County Sheriff Timothy Whitcomb, who will provide a plenary presentation and follow-up workshop on "Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder: History, Current Statistics and Incident Rates in First Responders." Whitcomb, a law enforcement professional for 28 years, has a master's in counseling psychology and is a certified police instructor for topics including interview interrogation, investigation of sex crimes and law enforcement response to school violence.
•Jennifer Shimer, M.S., rapid response facilitator for Love 146, an international human rights organization that is working to end child trafficking and exploitation through survivor care and prevention. A lead trainer for Love 146's #NotANumber prevention program, Shimer will address "Preventing Human Trafficking and Exploitation through Youth Empowerment and Caregiver Engagement," and "Engaging and Working with Survivors of Child Sex Trafficking."
•Garra Lloyd-Lester, associate director for the Suicide Prevention Center of New York State. Lloyd-Lester works with local, county and state systems to reduce the burden of suicide across the lifespan. He will present "Suicide Prevention, Bullying and Cyberbullying: What Do We Know and What Can We Do?" and "Question, Persuade and Refer (QPR) - Suicide Prevention Gatekeeper Program."
Safe at Home: Seeking Solutions for Adults and Children Experiencing Family Violence is sponsored by the Niagara County Family Violence Project and the Child Advocacy Center of Niagara, a service of Niagara Falls Memorial Medical Center. Sponsorship support is also provided by the Niagara County Department of Social Services, the Niagara County Department of Mental Health, the Buffalo Bills, the New York State Office of Children and Family Services and Catholic Charities of Buffalo - Niagara Services Division.
Continuing education credits are available for licensed social workers and mental health practitioners. The registration fee of $65 includes lunch and course materials. Additional information is available on the Child Advocacy Center website (www.cacofniagara.org
) or by calling 716-285-0045.