The Family-Focused Advocate, with Libby Ralston

Season 1Episode 12December 18, 2019

How can we get more child abuse victims and their families to participate in mental health treatment?

One barrier to improved outcomes for children is getting families to participate in and complete mental health treatments. We have the services available at Children’s Advocacy Centers (CACs), but not enough families take advantage of them. This is a family engagement problem. How do we change that? We talk with Libby Ralston from Project BEST about a shift in the way we communicate—and a focus on family advocacy.  What barriers must we overcome? And how can our team partners help make the case for treatment?

Topics in this episode:

  • The value of caregivers’ support and involvement in their child’s treatment. (1:24)
  • Strategies to engage families in services. (6:20)
  • Barriers to participating in treatment. (9:42)
  • Trauma-screening and assessments as family engagement tools. (13:42)
  • A shift in the way we communicate. (18:40)
  • Do you have a family engagement problem? (20:25)
  • We’re communicating caring. (27:15)
  • Our multidisciplinary team (MDT) partners can help. (29:16)


Motivational interviewing

The reference to our data is about NCA’s Outcome Measurement System.

The family engagement training project refers to the Enhance Early Engagement (E3) Training for Children’s Advocacy Centers’ Victim Advocates, a multi-year project that NCA and the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center are conducting.


Transcript to come.