Meet the MSW Interns/Researchers for Our Ohio Project

Last Monday (January 24th) I met an incredible group of young woman who form the research team for our pilot study.  They are MSW students dedicated to making a difference for children and families.  I thought it would be fun to let my Ohio friends meet them as well.

                             Sascha Johnston, Heather Farrell, Alyson Prahlow, Katie Dalo Haley Stasinos

They are in the process of developing support tools for workers and families, running those tools through evaluators and developing research instruments. We are all looking for an answer to this question: How can we better prepare foster and adoptive parents for their jounrey caring for children with a history of trauma?
Thank you students! Can't wait to see what you develop!

Meet the Ohio Team

Over the several months, a number of folks will be working together on the Bulter County Trauma Informed Assessment, Preparation and Support Pilot.

Here who we are:


Project Coordinator: Jayne Schooler

Jeff Center, Executive Director, Butler County Children Services
Donna W. Lang MSW, LSW, Director of Placement Services, Butler County Children Services
Deborah A. Camara, M.Ed. Foster Care/Utilization Management Butler County Children’s Services
Mary Vierling, LSW, Adoption Supervisor, Butler County Children Services
Mary Vicario, Clinical Therapist, Trauma Specialist, St. Aloysius Orphanage

Bev Spevik, Pre-service Trainer

OCWTP and Insitute for Human Services

Darren Varnado, SW Ohio Regional Training Center Director

Betsy Smalley, Adoption and Foster Care Training Manager
Kelley Gruber, Training Coordinator, Institute for Human Services

Pam Ross, MBA, IHS Administrative Coordinator   

Butler County Children Services (Ohio) Launches Pilot Study on Trauma-Informed Assessment and Preparation of Adoptive Families

With great excitement a group of passionate social workers, trainers and therapists met at Butler County Children Services in Hamilton, Ohio on January 17th to launch the first of its kind – a two year pilot study project on trauma informed preparation of adoptive and foster families.

Partnering with the National Child Traumatic Stress Network, Institute for Human Services, evaluators from the University of Cincinnati and MSW interns from Wheelock College, the goals of this project are to examine just how foster and adoptive parents are assessed and prepared. A major question that will be explored is how to narrow the gap between the expectations of foster/adoptive parents and the reality of their experience in caring for a child with a history of trauma. We hope our findings will:

1. Assess foster parent retention and reasons for leaving the program (did inadequate training play a role in their leaving the program)

2. Assess the role of trauma informed assessment and preparation as it relates to foster/adoptive parent satisfaction

3. Assess placement stability of children – are they moving less because parents are more trauma-informed

4. To create an evidence-based trauma-informed preparation, pre-service and support model that can be used not only in Ohio, but throughout the US and also in the work of the Institute for Human Services overseas.

A full description of this project can be found under the trauma informed tab.

For more information about this pilot project:
Contact project coordinator – Jayne Schooler, or 937-689-0985