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MARCH 2016
As you know, during the past several years, the 3-5-7 Model© has become an integral practice engagement strategy to support the work of young people and all of their families to build permanency relationships.  As a directional, guided approach, this practice model provides tools for professionals and caregiver parents to understand the stories of loss, trauma, and abandonment that each child carries with them from poor parenting experiences.  Through training, coaching and consultation, agencies implementing the 3-5-7 Model© are seeing significant shifts in the behaviors of children and young people through grief and relationship building activities.  An additional outcome has been increased worker satisfaction among those using the concepts and tools of the model.  Join us as we continue to expand this very exciting and successful approach to assuring well-being and permanency in relationships for children and their families who have been challenged by family traumas.  We encourage you to contact us with questions about the model and our programs and to discuss how we can support your work. 

WE'VE UPDATED OUR WEBSITE  to better reflect the current work of the 3-5-7 Model© program and have added lots of new content.  We hope you will visit us! Link

THE CLARIFICATION TASK:  What it is and what it is not!
Essentially, clarification happens when a youth examines the events of her past, experiences the feelings related to those events, and attaches meaning to those events.  Clarification is achieved for the present moment in time and from the youth's perspective.  Clarification is a lengthy process.  For children and youth, progress depends on where the youth is developmentally and cognitively, as well as their readiness to accept information about their history and life Clarification is NOT:
  • The child's acceptance of someone else's interpretation of events or insisting that the child has not completed clarification because they do not tell their story as it is told by others
  • Revisiting events of the child's life that she is not interested in exploring in the present time
  • Making a decision for the child that she does not need the information that she is asking for
  • Convincing the child that the "system's" plan is the best plan
  • A task that is "once and done"
Remember that clarification is not a process that moves in a straight line, but is more like a windy road that sometimes circles back on itself.  Through clarification-learning the facts and getting a better understanding of what happened when she was younger, a youth can better understand the events of her life, develop a more accurate self-identity, and reconcile the losses experienced as a result.  As they learn more and remember more about their past experiences, and if they are supported and allowed to safely express painful feelings-love, anger and hatred for others, fears, mistrust, and despair-they will begin to experience the emotions of grief.  When this is done repeatedly, in the presence of a person who is truly listening, the youth will begin to feel safe and eventually develop a sense of trust in that relationship. By listening to, accepting, and simply being with them as they experience their grief, the attachment cycle process is completed and the relationship is strengthened.
We support the work of Clarification when we allow the youth to tell their story and stop trying to write the ending!
AGENCY SPOTLIGHT: Christian Family Care of Pheonix, Arizona
This month we are recognizing Christian Family Care (CFC), as one of the newest members of the 3-5-7 Model© family.  Christian Family Care hosted Darla for their initial training in the fall of 2015.  Coaching sessions began in November, and the CFC team recently hosted Stephanie for day three of training, where they learned about integrating the 3-5-7 Model© Readiness Continuum and 3-5-7 Model© Skills Development Guide tools into their work.  During coaching sessions, the CFC team demonstrates a genuine caring for their youth and families.  What is particularly remarkable is that each team member knows the story of their youth, from the youth's perspective, taking care to meet their youth where they are, not get too far ahead, and allow the youth to do their work.  We are proud to be working with such a great group of committed professionals!  

Learn more about Christian Family Care here: https://cfcare.org/
Do you have a story to tell?  We would like to hear the real stories of children, youth and families who cope everyday with the trauma of losses in their lives - about the struggles and challenges to find wholeness.  We are inviting adults who participate in this journey as adoptive/foster/birth parents and youth workers/social workers, as well as young people who have been in the child welfare system, to share their stories.    

What did you observe or experience that inspired you or made a difference?  What helped you or the youth you work with to "hang in there", overcome, or succeed? How did the 3-5-7 Model© influence your work? 

Stories can be written or recorded, long or short.  Send your stories to office@darlahenry.org or contauct us for more information. 

Purpose:  A Life Map is a visual tool that can be used for a variety of purposes, including to facilitate the sharing of stories and to explore the child's perceptions about life events and relationships

Materials Needed:  Paper, markers, crayons, pencils, colorful stickers representing life events, people, and places.

Getting Started:  Start off with the day they were born.  Choose a sticker or create a small drawing at the corner of the page to represent that day.  Some might be comfortable with your invitation to begin drawing a map that reflects their life by starting at whatever point in time they are currently when doing this activity.  Next, following their lead, ask them to talk with you about the important events in their lives, allowing them to direct the conversation and creating a representation of each event on the page in the form of a path.  Allow them to share as much or as little as they like about each event, being careful not to move too quickly.  The idea is to allow them to feel the emotions of the event, so keep your responses brief and supportive, affirming painful and hurtful experiences along the way.

Tips and techniques to making the activity meaningful:  Avoid the temptation to correct information that is provided.  If you have additional information to offer, let her know and ask if she would like to hear the information you have.  The worker's role is to provide any additional factual information, but remember that the purpose of the Life Map is for the individual to tell the story from her perspective.  It is her work to make sense of it all, and to begin the process of integrating it into a framework of relationships that makes sense to her.  The Life Map becomes the story of her life from her point of view.  What events in life are remembered?  Which events had an impact on her?  The ability to listen is critical to the success of this activity.


Know and use today's 3-5-7 Model©!  lf you have never fully implemented the 3-5-7 Model© in practice or if you would like to learn about our tools and resources that help you to maintain fidelity to the model we'd love to hear from you!