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Donations are used to support Colorado's adoptive families.
In This Issue
Support Groups
CO Loses Funding
Medical Help Available
Colorado Gives Day
Trauma-Informed Care
Youth Choir
What Parents Need to Know
"How To" Manuals
Federal Lawmakers
Upcoming Fun Events
Twitter COCAF!
Sensory Friendly Films
Classroom Training


 Mobilizing Families

Thursdays (9 weeks)

Sept. 20-Nov.15, 2012

Click here for more info.


Adoption Competent Parenting Series: Baby Love

4th Friday of the month

January-May 2013

8745 W 14th Ave., Ste 100

Lakewood, CO 80228

Click here for more info.


 Respite Care Training


November 14, 2012

9:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m.

Hope for Children Family Strengthening Center

801 W 4th St

Pueblo, CO 81003

Click here for more info


How to Talk to Your Kids about Their History


Nov. 15, 2012

6:00 p.m. - 8:00 p.m.

First Evangelical Lutheran Church

803 3rd Ave.

Longmont, CO

Click here for more info.


 Brighter Side of Foster Care Workshop


December 5, 2012

8:30 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.

Faith Ministries International Church

7700 W Woodard Dr

Lakewood, CO 80227

Click here for more info.


Healing Through the Developmental Stages


January 8, 2013

5:00 p.m. - 8:00 p.m.

Adams County DHS

7401 Broadway

Denver, CO 80221

Click here for more info.




The State of the State in Cognitive Disability and Technology: 2012


November 2, 2012

8:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.

The Westin Westminster

10600 Westminster Blvd

Westminster, CO 80020

 lick here for more info




 How Does Your Engine Run? The Alert ProgramŪ for Self-Regulation

  Friday & Saturday

Nov 30 & Dec 1, 2012

8:30 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.

Cherry Creek School District

Student Achievement Resource Center


14188 E Briarwood Ave

Centennial, CO 80112

Click here for more info.



 Colorado Child and Adolescent Mental Health Conference: Silver Anniversary, Bringing People Together and Breaking Down Barriers

 Save the Date!

Monday & Tuesday 

April 15 & 16, 2013








Recorded Webinars

These webinars have been receorded and are available 24X7


Improving the Economic Security of Children in Foster Care & Young People Who Are Transitioning out of Care


Privatization of Child Welfare Services: A Guide for State Advocates

Click here to download.


 Collaborating with Kinship Caregivers Curriculum and TA

Click here to download.



FASD: Risk, Development, and Intervention


November 8, 2012

6:00 p.m.

Click here for more info.


The Developing Brain and Traumatic Stress in Transition-age Youth


November 13, 2012

11:00 a.m. - noon

Click here for more info.


Building Systems to Support Trauma-Informed Practice


November 15, 2012

12:30 p.m.

Click here for more info.


Expanding Trauma-Informed Services in Child Welfare Systems


January 10, 2013

12:30 p.m. 
Click here for more info.

AMETZ Adoption Training Institute

To register for any of these webinars, click here.


For more info, call 212-558-9949.


Parent Education for Special Needs Adoption


December 18, 2012

10:00 a.m. - 1:00 p.m.


Transracial Adoption: Helping Everyone Prepare, Settle In and Flourish


January 8, 2013

11:00 a.m. - 2:00 p.m.


A Child's View of Adoption


February 7, 2013

11:00 a.m. - 2:00 p.m.


Bio-Psychological Approach to Emotional and Behavioral Regulation in Children


May 8, 2012

10:00 a.m. - 1:00 p.m.


Ethical Challenges in Adoption Practice


June 6, 2013

10:00 a.m. - 1:00 p.m.

Support Groups


Sometimes our children provide us with challenges that we're just not quite ready to handle.  And sometimes support groups can help us find the answers we need, or at least make us feel okay about the unique challenges we're facing.  Here are a couple of support groups that might be helpful.


The Be The Change Challenge

(For parents of challenging children)

2nd Tuesday of each month

9:30 a.m. - 11:00 a.m.

1685 29th St, Suite 1264, Boulder, CO 80301

Call 630-841-0458

Click here for more info.


EMPOWER Colorado Adams County Rainbow Center

2140 E 88th Ave,

Thornton, CO  80229

3rd Monday of each month

6:00 p.m. -  8:00 p.m.

Contact:  KimNichelle Rivera 303-226-5536


NAMI Connections Recovery Support Group for Adults

ADMHN Building, 3rd floor

5500 S. Sycamore St, Littleton, CO  80120


7:00 p.m. 8:30 p.m.

Contact:  Carol 



NAMI Family Support Group Teleconference

2nd & 4th Tuesdays

of each month

Contact:  [email protected]


Positive Outcomes Comprehensive Post-Adoption Services

Parent Support Group

7853 E Arapahoe Ct #1400, Centennial, CO  80112

Call 303-721-6966 for more information.



Louisville Parent Support Group

Second Tuesday of the month
(10/9, 11/13, 12/11)

7:00 - 8:30

Art Underground,

 901 Front Street,

Louisville, CO 80027

$25 per session; reservations required.

Call 720-352-1743 or mail your payment to

Parent Support Group,

608 Main St, Louisville, CO 80027



October was an eventful month, and not necessarily in a good way. The news was full of horrific crimes and the month ended with hurricane Sandy. And while hurricane Sandy many not have touch us directly, just watching the news about such events can cause changes in your child's behavior. Shielding your children from these events won't help; someone will tell them about it. So use these "bad" events to have a good conversation with your child. Talk about things you do to keep them safe (from predators or from natural disasters). Talk about ways they can be proactive in taking care of themselves. But talk - honestly, and at a level that's appropriate for their current stage of development. And after you talk, listen - not just to what they say, but also what they're saying through their body language, behavior, and general demeanor. Don't tell them their fears are unfounded; let them express their fears and then deal with it in a positive way. Don't tell them they don't need to be sad; acknowledge their feelings and let them know that their emotions are just that - theirs!



But after you've talked (and talked and talked), start planning. November is National Adoption Month. November is Thanksgiving! And Christmas is so close, I can already see it (have you been to a store lately???). Involve your children and plan some positive, family-strengthening activities. You can plan something just for your family, or you can plan something that will help others. Either way, you'll all feel better for it.


Happy National Adoption Month and Happy Thanksgiving!

Deborah Cave, Executive Director

[email protected] 







Colorado Goes 4 Straight Years Without Earning Adoption Incentive Payments 

From the North American Council on Adoptable Children (NACAC)


In early October, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) released information about the adoption incentives earned by states that increased their fiscal year 2011 adoptions from a 2007 baseline number.


HHS awarded more than $31 million to 30 states (Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, Delaware, Florida, Hawaii, Idaho, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Mexico, North Carolina, North Dakota, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Texas, Utah, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, and Wyoming).  Awards range from just over $10,000 in New Hampshire to almost $7 million in Texas. Eleven states earned awards of more than $1 million.


Colorado has only received awards once in the last 7 years; in 2007, Colorado was awarded $504,000.


Click here to see the table of HHS awards.


Medical Help Available 


Shriners Hospitals for Children and El Jebel Shriners in Denver work to help children with orthopedic conditions, burns, spinal cord injuries, cleft lip and palate, as well as many other issues live the fullest lives possible. All care and services are provided regardless of the patients' ability to pay.


Children up to age 18, regardless of race, creed, national origin, insurance status, or citizenship status, are eligible for care at Shriners Hospitals for Children if there is a reasonable possibility they can benefit from the specialized services available.


Denver area screenings are held the first Wednesday of every month at 1:00 p.m. at the El Jebel Shriners Event Center, 4625 West 50th Avenue, Denver, CO. Appointments are needed; call 303-455-3470 to make an appointment.


Click here to go to the Denver El Jebel website  for more information.



Colorado Gives Day Helps COCAF


Tuesday, December 4, 2012 starting at 12:00 a.m.


Colorado Gives Day is an initiative to increase philanthropy in Colorado through online giving, presented by Community First Foundation and FirstBank. Join your friends, family and neighbors in supporting the Colorado nonprofits that enrich all of our lives. More than 1,000 organizations are participating, including COCAF.


This is COCAF's one fundraiser for the year, so we ask that you please participate so that we can continue to provide you with the advocacy expertise of Deborah Cave, as well as providing you with the monthly enewsletter. 

Afraid you'll forget on December 4? Then click here now, and pre-schedule your donation! Just enter COCAF in the "Search by Nonprofit Name,Keyword, City or Zip Code" block.


Trauma-Informed Care 

From the National Resource Center for Permanency and Family Connections (NRCPFC) and National Center for Youth Law (NCYL)


Children who are physically or sexually abused, or who go through other trauma-inducing experiences, can develop mental health disorders and related problems. Trauma can fundamentally affect how a young person grows and develops. Trauma-informed care is a treatment approach that explicitly acknowledges the role trauma plays in people's lives. That approach is increasingly being developed and refined as a method of treatment by professionals working in medicine, mental health, education, foster care, juvenile justice, and other areas.

Click here to read this brief article from Youth Law News, by Ta Lynn Mitchell, discusses: Exposure to Trauma; Trauma's Effects; Trauma-Informed Care; Helping Native Youth; and Trauma-Informed Care in California, and Beyond. (2012)


Soar Youth Choir!!!! 

Youth interested in participating in a choir with other adoptive and foster children should think about joining Soar.  This dynamic group will be entertaining around the metro area, so this is a chance to be part of a great group of people and to show off your singing voice.  Click here to find out more.

What Parents Need to Know about Sexual Abuse 
From the National Child Traumatic Stress Network (NCTSN)

A new resource kit "Caring for Kids: What Parents Need to Know about Sexual Abuse" (available in English & Spanish) is now available.

This National Child Traumatic Stress Network (NCTSN) resource kit contains information and fact sheets for parents, caregivers, and adolescents. The kit provides parents and caregivers with tools to help them support children who have been victims of sexual abuse, information on the importance of talking to children and youth about body safety, and guidance on how to respond when children disclose sexual abuse. Also included is advice on how to cope with the shock of intrafamilial abuse and with the emotional impact of legal involvement in sexual abuse cases. Caring for Kids provides adolescents with information about the prevalence of acquaintance rape and tips to help reduce their risk for abuse. It also offers guidance on what to do if they are a victim of acquaintance rape including disclosure, medical attention, and professional counseling.


En Espanol tambien: Cuidando a los Niņos: Lo que Los Padres Necesitan Saber Acerca del Abuso Sexual Infanti


Click here to go to the resource kit.

"How To" Manuals

Looking for an adoption or foster care how to manual? Click here to go to the National Resource Center for Permanency and Family Connections (NRCPFC) list of state-by-state handbooks for adoptive, foster, and birth parents. Click here to go to those handbooks.


NRCPFC also has a collection of agency handbooks that contain valuable information. Click here to see the agency handbooks.

Easy Access to Federal Lawmakers 
From NACAC's Community Champions Network (CCN) 

Do you have an important message or key issue or specific ask you want your Congressional representatives to hear?  From Congress.org, writing Congress is now easier than ever. Congress.org  is a nonpartisan news and information website dedicated to encouraging civic participation. If you want to contact your legislators, all you need to do is click on the words "Join the Conversation, Write Your Lawmakers" in the upper-right corner of the website. Or, you can click on this link to write all of your Congressional leaders at one time, including your two Senators and one Representative.

FREE PEP Conferences

Parents Encouraging Parents (PEP) has announced dates for upcoming conferences.


Join them for one of two upcomnig conferences: February 28 - March 2, 2013, location TBD; May 2-4, 2013, location TBD.


Click here for more information and a conference application.


PEP Conferences bring parents and professionals together to allow them the opportunity to share ideas, discuss concerns, celebrate successes, and obtain information relating to parenting, educating and supporting a child with a disability-from ages birth to twenty-one. In addition, the conference promotes the partnerships between parents and professionals that are essential in supporting and including children with disabilities in schools and the community.


PEP Conferences are sponsored by the Colorado Department of Education Exceptional Student Services/Special Education Department and are free of charge.



Abandoned for Life: A Fundraiser

Friday, November 9, 2012

Colorado Community Church, Upper Room

15445 E Iliff Ave, Unit C, Aurora, CO 80013


Izidor Ruckel, a former Romanian orphan, is hosting a dinner to raise funds for a new documentary about what life has been like for orphans since ABC News 20/20 discovered them in 1990. The film will feature friends adopted by American families, as well as those left behind. Learn more, enjoy Romanian food and see a Romanian folkdance ensemble.


Click here to register.



The Adoption Exchange's

6th Annual Holiday Photo Shoot!

Sunday, November 11, 2012, 9:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.

The Adoption Exchange

14232 E Evans Ave, Aurora, CO 80014


If you are interested in participating in this FREE event, click here to sign up for a time slot. Registration will close when no available time slots are left, and this event is expected to fill up quickly - so sign up now! If you have any questions, contact Erik Penn at [email protected] or by phone at 303-755-4756.



The Heart of Dixie

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Seawell Grand Ballroom, 1101 13th Street Denver, CO 80204

Join The Adoption Exchange for the 25th Annual Fantasy Ball on Saturday, November 17, 2012 at the  Seawell Grand Ballroom. This year's event, "The Heart of Dixie," will feature exciting entertainment by Marcia Ball, delicious catering by Epicurean, along with an exciting silent and live auction.


Click here to purchase tickets. 

Twitter @Adopt_Colorado 


Check us out at http://www.twitter.com/Adopt_Colorado  and follow us!  You'll get up to the minute news on classes, resources, and adoption issues. 

Sensory Friendly Films Program 
AMC TheatresŪ  and the Autism Society have teamed up to bring families affected by autism and other disabilities a special opportunity to enjoy movies in a sae and accepting environment with the "Sensory Friendly Films" program.   Tickets are $4-6 depending on location and can be purchased on the day of the event.   For more information or to sign up for notices of upcoming movies, click here.    Both the AMC Westminster 24 and AMC Southlands 16 offer these films. 

Upcoming shows:

 November 10:   Wreck-It Ralph

COCAF strives to provide Colorado's adoptive families with the information and resources they need to keep their families healthy and happy.  If you have ideas for topics you think we should cover, please let us know.  And if you find a good resource -- definitely let us know.  Please forward your ideas or information to me at [email protected].  Materials received by the 20th of a month will be considered for inclusion in the next month's newsletter.

Wishing all families peace, serenity, and a good sense of humor,
Colleen Tarket, COCAF Board President (and newsletter put-ter-together-er)

COCAF does not recommend or endorse any specific book, website, survey, study, or provider of services.  The purpose of the COCAF e-newsletter is to provide families with potential resources.  All information contained in this newsletter is for general informational purposes only and as is without warranty expressed or implied, and shall not constitute legal, medical, psychiatric, educational, or parenting advice.  COCAF is not be liable for any damages arising from using the information in this newsletter, including direct, indirect, incidental, punitive, and/or consequential damages.


No information on this site should be considered legal advice.  Laws vary by state, so you are urged to research the specific laws, and your rights, within your state.  If you have specific questions regarding your rights, or the laws in your state, please contact an attorney.

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We believe that all children have the right to a permanent loving family. We are dedicated to improving services for every pre- and post-adoptive family and to increasing the knowledge and accountability of public systems. We are committed to advocacy in state and local service planning and delivery, in support of all pre and post adoptive families.

Deborah Cave, Executive Director