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In This Issue
Twitter COCAF!
Sibling Attachments
Scholarship Opportunity
Secondary Traumatic Stress
Social Media Tips
Internet and Adoption
Permanency Planning Today
Adoption Tax Credit
Support Groups
Classroom Training

Take a Break: Rest & Respite for Caregivers & Families Training

January 15, 2014

9:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m.
Fort Morgan, CO

Click here for more info.


If You Were Mine


January 18, 2014

8:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m.

Christ Community Church

1301 15th St

Greeley, CO

Click here for more info.

RSVP by Jan. 15 to Loni at [email protected] or by phone at 970-339-8545



Wired Differently: 5 Keys to Working with Students with Emotional & Behavioral Challenges


January 24, 2014

8:00 a.m. - 4:15 p.m.
Holiday Inn Denver East-Stapleton

3333 Quebec St

Denver, CO 80207

Click here for more info.



Parenting Kids from Hard Places Training: An Introduction to TBRIŽ


January 25, 2014

9:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.

Grace Chapel

Main Worship Center

8505 S Valley Highway

Englewood, CO 80112

Click here for more info.



The Language of Adoption:  

The Comfort of Chaos


February 6, 2014

6:00 p.m. - 8:30 p.m.

Koelbel Library

5955 S Holly St

Centennial, CO 80121

Click here for more info.


Take a Break: Rest & Respite for Caregivers & Families Training


 February 10, 2014 

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

Aurora, CO

Click here for more info.



Drug & Alcohol Exposure: Children from the US and Abroad


January 16, 2014

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

Click here for more info.

Wounded Children, Healing Homes:  

The Impact of Traumatized Children on the Family


January 16, 2014

11:00 a.m. - 12:30 p.m.

Click here for more info.

First 150 registrants are free; use coupon code HEAL114

Ethical Challenges in Adoption Practice


February 13, 2014

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

Click here for more info.

Untangling the Web: The Internet's Transformative Impact on Domestic and International Adoption


April 30,2014

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

Click here for more info.



These webinars have been recorded and are available 24X7


Supporting Youth in Transition: The Importance of Case Worker Visits

Click here to for more info.


Adoption Tax Credit: A Guide for State Advocates

Click here for more info.


Child Welfare and the Affordable Care Act

Click here for more info.


Successful Stepfamily Living

Click here for more info.


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.


Finding What Works: Helping Young Adults Transition into Adulthood

Click here to download.


The Uninterrupted Scholars Act: How Do Recent Changes to FERPA Help Child Welfare Agencies Get Access to School Records?

Click here to download.

The 50 State Chartbook on Foster Care: A Web-Based Data Resource for Child Welfare Professionals

Click here to download.

  Improving the Economic Security of Children in Foster Care and Young People Who Are Transitioning from Foster Care
FREE Online Courses
FREE AFP Online Classes

These classes are available free to families who have adopted internationally or privately. To get your online training code and instructions for accessing your free training class, contact Michelle Betsch at [email protected] or



Conspicuous Families

  Discipline and the Adopted Child: Ain't Misbehavin'


Finding the Missing Pieces 


The Journey Of Attachment 


 Tough Starts: Brain Development Matters  


Mental Health Colorado's 21st Annual Legislative Education and Advocacy Day (LEAD)


February 21, 2014

McNichols Civic Center Building

144 W Colfax

Denver, CO

More info to come.
AMC Autism Logo  
Sensory Friendly Films
AMC Theatres (AMC) and the Autism Society have teamed up to bring families affected by autism and other disabilities a special opportunity to enjoy their favorite films in a safe and accepting environment on a monthly basis with the "Sensory Friendly Films" program.  

Click here for more info.



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. 



Happy New Year! Starting a new year can mean more of the same or it can mean a new beginning - only you get to make that decision. I personally think too many people make lots of resolutions, but rarely actually accomplish them. I prefer to choose one goal that I have complete control over (otherwise you can't determine the success), and focus on it. It doesn't have to be something big, just something doable. One year I decided to floss every day (and to all of you who just rolled your eyes, do you actually floss every day?). I know I'm supposed to, but actually doing it was sort of spotty. It's been 3 years since I made that "resolution," and I'm still flossing every day.


Too wimpy a goal you say? Well, sometimes we have to start with something wimpy to build up our confidence that we can take on something tougher - like losing weight - for real and forever. Or like not letting our kids trigger our anger. So set a goal - just one attainable goal, and focus on it until you succeed. Success is good for the soul (and for my teeth according to my dentist!).


Happy 2014!

Colleen Tarket, Board Member 

[email protected]  

Sibling Attachments


Sibling attachments are important, but sometimes situations beyond the child's control take them away from their siblings. Here are two videos with children explaining the importance of staying connected to their siblings:  



Teens and young adults who suffer from mental illness can feel hopeless and alone. Many don't know what's wrong with them but feel like it's their fault. Those who understand what is happening fear they can't be helped. Because of the stigma attached to mental illness, it's often hard for those suffering and their families and friends to talk about what they're going through. But help is available, and it works.


The goal of OK2TALK is to create a community for teens and young adults struggling with mental health problems and encourage them to talk about what they're experiencing by sharing their personal stories of recovery, tragedy, struggle or hope. Anyone can add their voice by sharing creative content such as poetry, inspirational quotes, photos, videos, song lyrics and messages of support in a safe, moderated space. We hope this is the first step towards getting help and feeling better.


Click here to go to ok2talk.org.


Scholarship Opportunity

Helen M. McLoraine Scholarship Program for Foster Care and Emancipating Youth is now accepting applications. 


Recipients will be selected based on academic achievement/potential, motivation, potential for success in their chosen program and field, and financial need. Scholarship awards can be up to $10,000 per year (with typical awards ranging from $2,000 to $7,000) and are based on financial need, the strength of the student application, and the student's educational plan.


Students who meet all the following criteria are encouraged to apply:

  • Were in the foster care system in Colorado for a minimum of 24 months between the ages of 13 and 18 (months do not need to have been consecutive). Applicants who meet this requirement and are emancipated, were adopted at age 15 or older, or are participating in the Guardianship Assistance Program or Independent Living Arrangement are eligible to apply.
  • Will be age 23 or younger on August 15, 2014.
  • Have completed the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) in 2014.
  • Be planning to attend an accredited trade or technical school, community college or 4-year college/university for the 2014-2015 academic year.


Individuals who are related to a member of the Scholarship Selection Committee or a Denver Foundation staff or board member are not eligible to apply for this scholarship.


Deadline to apply is March 28, 2014. Click here to read more.
Secondary Traumatic Stress (STS)

The National Child Traumatic Stress Network (NCTSN) now has information on secondary traumatic stress (STS). While their information is mainly aimed at professionals working with traumatized children, both foster and adoptive parents can suffer from STS and may benefit from this information.


To access their web page which provides basic information, symptoms, prevention strategies, and resources, click here.


Social Media Tips



Whether or not you like it, social media is now a part of our lives. These two tip sheets from the Child Welfare Information Gateway are aimed at foster families, but the tips apply to any family. Click on the links below to read more.


Internet and Adoption

A new study by the Evan B. Donaldson Adoption Institute (DAI) examines the historic effect of the Internet on adoption, finding that it's being widely used in an array of positive ways - but also is increasing commodification of children and commercialization by for-profit brokers, while enabling greater exploitation of pregnant women considering adoption for their babies and of adults seeking to adopt.  


"Untangling the Web II: A Research-Based Roadmap for Reform" is the second major publication in DAI's comprehensive, multi-year initiative on the changes the Internet and social media are instigating in adoption.  


Click here to read the report.

Permanency Planning Today
From the National Resource Center for Permanency and Family Connections (NRCPFC)

The Summer/Fall 2013 issue of Permanency Planning Today, NRCPFC's bi-annual newsletter, focuses on permanency for older youth and young adults. Click here to go to the newsletter.


Adoption Tax Credit Updates 

Curious about the status of the Adoption Tax Credit legislation? Click here to see the most current information.


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 some support groups that might be helpful.


Welcome Child Adoption/Foster Care Support Group

Second Sunday of the month (January 12, February 9, March 9, April 13, May 11, and June 8)

6:00 p.m. - 7:30 p.m.

Timberline Church, Room 214

2908 S. Timberline Road

Fort Collins, CO  80525

For more information contact Michele Sanner by email at [email protected]gmail.com or by phone at (970) 481-5749.

Click here to register for childcare.


Xpress Yourself Art & Play Therapy  

Support groups for internationally adopted children & adolescents


6920 S. Holly Circle

Centennial, CO 80112

Call 303-850-9998, ext 22


Called to Adopt Support Group

4th Saturday of the month, 6:00 p.m.,
Christ Community Church, Greeley, CO

Click here for more info.


The Men's Group for Adoptive Dads

Thursdays, 6:00 a.m. - 7:00 a.m.

Christ Community Church (south door)

1301 15th St, Greeley, CO 80631

For more information, contact Tim Paxton at 970-691-5737 or by email at [email protected].


 Sensory Processing Disorder Parent Support Group

Facilitators:  Sarah Ahn and Jenny Burnsed, LPC

Last Monday of every month 6:00-8:00 p.m.

Bixby School,  3750 Table Mesa Drive, Boulder

There is no fee associated with this group, though donations are gratefully accepted.  Please contact Sarah at [email protected] for questions.

Therapeutic Post-Adoption Support Group

2nd Thursday of the month, 5:30 p.m. - 7:30 p.m.

Windsor Timberline Church

360 E Crossroads Blvd, Windsor, CO

Click here for more information.


Aurora Mental Health

Adoption Support Group

2nd & 4th Mondays of the month

Aurora Mental Health

11059 E Bethany Drive, Aurora, CO 80014

Click here for more information.


The Be The Change Challenge

(For parents of challenging children)

2nd Tuesday of each month, 9:30 a.m. - 11:00 a.m.

ACL Boulder, 5744 North 71st Street, Longmont, Colorado 80503

Call 630-841-0458

Click here for more info.


EMPOWER Colorado Adams County Rainbow Center

3rd Thursday of each month, 6:00 p.m. -  8:00 p.m.

2140 E 88th Ave, Thornton, CO  80229

Contact:  KimNichelle Rivera 303-226-5536


EMPOWER Littleton/Aurora/Englewood

1st & 3rd Thursday, 6:00 p.m. - 8:00 p.m.

Arapahoe/Douglas Mental Health Network

155 Inverness Drive West, Englewood, CO 80112

Contact Carol Villa at 303-790-1055 for more information or email [email protected]


NAMI Connections Recovery Support Group for Adults

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

ADMHN Building, 3rd floor

5500 S. Sycamore St, Littleton, CO  80120

Contact:  Carol 



NAMI Family Support Group Teleconference

2nd & 4th Tuesdays of each month

Contact:  [email protected] 


Louisville Parent Support Group

Second Tuesday of the month 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



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 Member (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