I began working at CALM in August of 2017 a few weeks after concluding my Masters in Clinical Psychology at Pepperdine University in Los Angeles. I’m just coming into my second year.
I have the honor of being the first Early Childhood Mental Health Consultant at Goleta Unified School District (GUSD), where we began our initial contract with all Goleta State pre-schools providing reflective practice, coaching and crisis intervention in the classroom as well as for families and we offered training in self-regulation with transitional kindergarten teachers. I am currently acting as an Early Childhood Consultant supporting TK (transitional kindergarten) classes & admin at GUSD and Cottage Hospital Orfalea Children’s Center staff & teachers.
What is most fresh in my mind is the result of our first year at GUSD being recognized as innovative by the California School Board Association in that by experiencing benefits from reflective practice, coaching, self regulation training and crisis intervention through our consultation services, GUSD received the Golden Bell award. For us this means that not only is consultation making an impact in that GUSD wanted our services a second year but that they themselves saw improvements that were award winning for them. This is a win for GUSD families, CALM and California as I feel consultation is an amazing resource that has a bright future.
If I could do one thing to make kids’ lives better, I would have their parents, teachers and the children themselves have access and coaching in self-regulation tools. Our Program Manager, Jennifer Mundy, created a Self-Regulation Tool Kit and in fact I may very well make it my holiday stocking item for everyone I know. Having the ability to reflect and have tools no matter where you or who you’re with to make you more present is empowering and life-changing.
I wish for more people to know that CALM stands for resiliency and prevention, our new mission statement and not just our historical acronym. I’d like to see CALM grow as a trauma informed and resiliency structured organization that acts as a glowing ember of possibility to communities state if not nationwide.