White Paper Series
Seeking Meaningful Therapy: Thoughts from an Adoptive Mom 

by Debbie Schugg Lead Parent Partner in Kinship Center’s Adoption and Permanency Wraparound Program

Therapy can be an incredibly useful tool for children living in foster, adoptive and kinship caregiving families. However, many therapists do not have training in the particular attachment issues faced by adoptive and other permanent families. In this engaging paper, adoptive mother, Debbie Schugg, talks about the importance of finding an attachment-savvy therapist who makes the parent-child relationship the priority in the therapeutic process.

The Dance of Permanence 

by Allison Davis Maxon, LMFT Regional Executive Director for Kinship Center, Southern California

 The challenge for parents of children who have experienced loss, trauma and multiple placements is that a traditional approach to parenting is highly ineffective with these children. These parents will need a complete paradigm shift in order to be able to lead the dance in the parent-child attachment relationship. Allison Davis Maxon describes the attachment dilemma that exists for children who have experienced trauma and loss, and introduces a new course for parents and caregivers that will empower them to develop deep, meaningful relationships with their children while responding to their behaviors and needs.

Childhood Trauma: A Multi-Dimensional Approach  

by Laura Ornelas, LCSW Regional Director of Children’s Mental Health Services for Kinship Center

 For children who have experienced trauma, the storage of traumatic memories occurs in an emotionally primitive state, making it difficult to access those memories through traditional “talk” therapies. In this paper, Laura Ornelas explains how sensory-oriented therapies can access traumatic memories more successfully, and the importance of a family therapy approach for treating childhood trauma and creating new memories as part of the healing process.

ACT Graduate Clinical Training Survey Results and Implications  

by Catie Hargrove MS Program Director and Margaret Ross, MSW Program Assistant for the Kinship Center Education Institute

 Over the years, ACT graduates have expressed a significant desire and need to continue to build on the clinical foundations established in ACT. The Kinship Center Education Institute™ designed an online survey for ACT graduates to determine the types of advanced courses, tools and techniques that were of strongest interest to this population. This paper reports on the key findings of the survey, including the high percentage of respondents who are utilizing ACT materials and techniques as part of their regular practice, and the overwhelming desire for advanced clinical courses in five specific topic areas.

Intensive Support for Adoptive Families in Rural Areas
by Graham Wright, M. Phil. MSW Program Director of Post Adoption Services for Kinship Center

Post-adoption support services are essential for families coping with the challenges of caring for children with extensive histories of trauma, prenatal exposure to drugs and alcohol, and difficulties in forming relationships. However, adoption and permanency-competent services for these families can be hard to find even in urban areas, and are almost non-existent in rural areas. Over the past ten years, Kinship Center’s Adoption-Informed Wraparound Program has seen remarkable success. In his paper, Graham Wright describes how a creative approach to service delivery is helping to bring Adoption-Informed Wraparound services to several rural California counties.


Donate Now
You can make a positive and lasting difference in the lives of children by making a tax-deductible gift...
Kinship Center welcomes volunteers who want to donate their time to help provide support to children and families.
News & Events
Kinship Center in the news and upcoming events at our locations...
Annual Report
Recent stories of changed lifes, program highlights, national recognition, and our communities...