Army of Angels

 
$6,739
$18,261
Raised
Remaining
Jan 19, 2012

Army of Angels Update 2012

Kerr helps children begin to recover from past experiences of abuse and neglect, address mental and emotional health challenges and receive life skills training and support to overcome obstacles related to both mental health challenges and developmental disabilities. Kerr also provides a wide range of care for adults with developmental disabilities aimed at allowing individuals to live the fullest and least restrictive life possible.

Donations from our community directly contribute to these outcomes and help Kerr achieve its mission of supporting people with developmental disabilities and mental health challenges to lead self-determined lives and realize their full potential.  In the last year, Kerr's program's reported the following results:

Developmental Disabilities Services

Group Homes for Youth: Kerr provided 24-hour care and treatment for 102 youth, ages 9 to 18, with developmental disabilities and mental health challenges in 15 group homes. Ninety-seven percent of the youth met their personal goals or are making significant, positive progress.

Group Homes for Adults: Kerr provided a neighborhood home in a residential community for 113 men and women with developmental disabilities in 29 group homes and served 112 adults with developmental disabilities in Community Inclusion programs where participants entered the workforce, joined in community activities and pursued hobbies. Ninety-six percent of all adults with disabilities met their personal goals or are well on their way.

Skills Training and Supported Living
Kerr provided 4 men and women with developmental disabilities who live in their own home and require assistance in improving their skills in personal care, cooking, shopping and other daily activities.

Youth & Family Services

Intensive Community-Based Treatment Services
Kerr served 97 low-income children, ages 4 to 17, with emotional and behavioral health challenges who were at risk of losing their home or school placement. Therapy, skills training, and intensive behavioral support allowed 77% of children to remain safely in their home setting.

Crisis Psychiatric Care
Kerr provided short-term crisis psychiatric care for 297 children who posed an immediate danger to themselves or others. Ninety-seven percent of children were stabilized and able to successfully transition to a less intensive level of care, including returning to their family.

Community-Based Outpatient Services
Kerr provided services to 207 children who required mental health treatment, skills training, and family support to be maintained in the community and out of institutions.

Kerr Early Childhood Outpatient Services
Kerr served 32 young children who are emotionally and behaviorally challenged.  All 32 children showed improvement in their presenting problems and daily functioning.  As a result, the children entered their community preschool or kindergarten ready to learn.

Special Needs & Therapeutic Foster Care
Kerr provided care for 106 children in foster care who have both mental health challenges and developmental disabilities and require skills training and extensive foster parent support.

While Kerr positively impacted the lives of more than 1,100 children, adults and families in the last year, the need for services remains great and more work needs to be done.
Community support will help Kerr's programs continue to grow and be successful.

For youth faced with a mental health challenge, as well as a developmental disability, this means providing a safe, supportive group home where each child can work to overcome significant challenges and build the social, emotional and daily life skills needed for future independence. For a child pulled from an unsafe family and placed into foster care, this means being a lifeline to stability and a brighter future. For a child in the midst of a frightening, even life-threatening, mental health crisis, this means being a safety net offering immediate security and stabilization.

Links:

Oct 14, 2011

Army of Angels Project Report

WE'RE BUILDING AN ARMY OF ANGELS.
A community that stands together.  Where we challenge the norm to create a society that has no barrier.  Where people who face mental health challenges and developmental disabilities are included and empowered.  Where families are supported and children have reason to smile.  Where everyday people reach out to the most vulnerable and give back to their community.

 2010 - 2011 Program Year Outcomes
Intensive Community-Based Treatment - Kerr served 97 children, ages 5 to 17, in the Intensive Community-Based Treatment program - an alternative to facility-based residential treatment programs.  The program provides wraparound care coordination, individual and family therapy, skills training, and intensive behavioral support for high-needs children living in the community.

  • 75% of children assessed showed improvement in caregiver skills and strengths.
  • 77% of children were discharged to a lower level of care.

Community-Based Outpatient Services - Kerr provided 207 children with mental health treatment, skills training and care coordination to help preserve families and maintain children's placement in the community.

  • 80% of children assessed showed improvement in caregiver skills and strengths.
  • 83% of children were discharged to a lower level of care.

Foster Proctor Care - Kerr's Proctor Care program provides longer-term placements for children with developmental disabilities less likely to be reunifed with their birth families.  The program offers case management, skills training, and extensive foster parent support.  A total of 18 children were served

Behavior Rehabilitation Services (BRS) Foster Care - Kerr provided foster homes, case management and behavioral skills training to 88 children during the 2010-2011 program year.  BRS Foster Care helps meet the needs of children awaiting family reunification or other permanent placement.

Crisis Psychiatric Care - Kerr provided a secure alternative-to-hospitalization and step-down service for children and youth requiring 24-hour supervision, psychiatric evaluation and crisis stabilization.  A total of 297 children were served in 2010-2011 with an average program stay of just over 16 days.

  • 83% of children assessed showed improvement in presenting problrms suach as impulsivity, depresion and anxiety.
  • 89% of children assessed showed improvement in high-risk behaviors such as self-harm and aggression.

Early Childhood Outpatient Services - A toal of 32 children were provided both community-based mental health and intervention in community classrooms, keeping the children enrolled in their community school.  The program assists emotionally and behaviorally challenged toddler, young children, and their families.

  • 100% of children assessed showed improvement in daily functioning.
  • 100% of children assessed showed improvement in individual strengths.

Family Involvement - Kerr provides support services and advocavy to families with children receiving Kerr's services.  Kerr's Family Involvement staff are parents of children with special needs themselves, and are typically perceived as peers by the families the agency serves.  A total of 30 families were served, receiving an average of 10.69 hours of direct services per family.

Adult Developmental Disability Services - Kerr operates 28 community-based residential homes that provide 24-hour service to people with devleopmental disabilities.  The individuals served gain independence, increased choice and control over thier lives with a focus on personal skill development and basic life choices as well as social and recreational activities.

  • 74% of adults living with a developmental disability completed a personal goal they set for themselves.
  • An additional 22% of adults partially completed a personal goal they set for themselves.

Youth Group Homes - Neighborhood group homes for youth offer specialized care and treatment for children ages 7 to 18 with developmental disabilities and mental health challenges.  These youth ar eprovided with the skills they need to live as independently as possible when they reach adulthood.

  • 65% of youth living in Kerr's group homes completed a personal goal.
  • An additional 32% of youth partically completed a personal goal.
Jul 11, 2011

Army of Angels Project Report

Celebrating Many Milestones at Graduation

 “Success is seeing a kid graduate when everyone said the odds are they’re not going to do it. It’s seeing a kid get the job that they thought they could never get. It’s knowing I was a part of it, because they didn’t know if they were going to make it.” — Rose, foster care provider.

 This June marks a very special life achievement for five teens in Albertina Kerr’s youth group homes. Just like thousands of kids across the country, they are graduating and earning their high school diplomas.

 For two graduates, Sarah and Ryan*, this rite of passage signifies their achievements at school as well as accomplishments in meeting personal goals set with their support team. The focus of the team is on providing kids with the skills they need to live as independently as possible once they become adults.

As residents of Albertina Kerr youth group homes for kids ages 7 to 18 with developmental disabilities and mental health challenges, the graduates received around-the-clock support and life skills training.

Sarah is quick to identify the changes she has seen in herself since she came to Albertina Kerr at age 11. “I’ve learned coping skills and I can solve problems,” Sarah said. “I’m listening to people and not ignoring them. That’s what I used to do.”

She also has big ambitions, and hopes to set an example and inspire other girls in Kerr’s youth group homes. “I’m excited for graduation because friends will look up to me,” she said. “I want to be a waitress. I like to cook and really like helping people.”

Ryan, who said his favorite class in high school was physical education, hopes to be able to use what he has learned in school and in his home to help him land his dream job. “I want to be a logger someday,” Ryan said. “I like staying active and being outside.”

 While graduating from high school is an exciting time for these teens, it can also be bittersweet. Once they turn 18 and become adults, they must transition into new living situations.

 Albertina Kerr staff are currently part of a state-wide initiative to seek out financially sustainable options that address the needs of youth with developmental disabilities as they transition into adulthood.

 In the interim, Kerr has opened two adult group homes specifically for young adults working toward increased independence. That gives these graduates, and many more to come, hope for a brighter future.

 *Names have been changed to protect confidentiality

Links:

Mar 8, 2011

Army of Angels Project Report

Kerr offers a wide range of intensive psychiatric services for children and support for their families, creating possibilities for a healthy, productive life for each child. Programs include a therapeutic preschool, a crisis psychiatric care facility, outpatient services, community-based treatment, a family resource center and foster care. These programs served 998 unduplicated children and families in the last year.

Kerr also works with children and adults with developmental disabilities. The organization operates 44 group homes and also serves people in their own apartments. Kerr also offers programs that help people with developmental disabilities connect with their community through job and volunteer placements. 287 people benefited from these programs during the last year.

Youth &Family Services 

 

Intensive Community-Based Treatment Services

Kerr served 127 low-income children, ages 4 to 17, with emotional and behavioral health challenges who were at risk of losing their home or school placement. Therapy, skills training and intensive behavioral support allowed 82% of children to remain safely in their home setting. 75% of children showed a decrease in incidences of major behavioral problems.

Crisis Psychiatric Care

Kerr provided who short-term crisis psychiatric care for 314 children who posed an immediate danger to themselves or others. 77% of children were stabilized and able to successfully transition to a less intensive level of care, including returning home to their family.

Community-Based Outpatient Services

Kerr provided services to 318 children who required mental health treatment, skills training and family support to be maintained in the community and out of institutions.

Kerr Early Intervention Program – KEIP

Kerr served 32 children, ages 3-5, with emotional issues and learning delays, with 88% transitioning to a less intensive level of care such as mainstream kindergarten, preschool or Head Start. In partnership with the Multnomah
Early Childhood Program, the children and their families received preschool education, therapy and counseling.

Therapeutic & Special Needs Foster Care

Kerr served 98 children in foster care who have both mental health
challenges and developmental disabilities and require skills training and extensive foster parent support. The organization provided care for another 22 children in foster care who require special services and therapy due to their emotional challenges that are often the result of past abuse and/or neglect. In the last year Kerr also recruited, trained and certified more than 50 new foster families.

Family Resource Center

In addition to families served by Kerr, another 87 families from the community accessed this center – a free resource for any family caring for a child with emotional and mental health challenges.

Developmental Disabilities Services

Group Homes for Youth: Kerr provided 24-hour care and treatment for 102 youth, ages 10 to 18, with developmental disabilities and mental health challenges in 15 group homes. More than half of the group homes in Oregon that care for this vulnerable population of children are now operated by Kerr.

Group Homes for Adults: Kerr provided a neighborhood home in a residential community for 113 men and women with developmental disabilities in 28 group homes and served 112 adults with developmental disabilities (including 66 group home residents) in Community Inclusion programs. Here, participants entered the work force, joined in community activities and pursued hobbies. 90% of all adults with disabilities met their personal goals or are well on their way.

Skills Training and Supported Living

Kerr supported 4 men and women with developmental disabilities who live in their own home. These individuals received assistance in improving their skills in personal care, cooking, shopping and other daily activities.

RECENT ACCOMPLISHMENTS

In 2010 Kerr opened a new group home specifically designed to serve transition age young adults, ages 18 to 21, who have both a developmental disability and mental health challenge. This home is unique in that it meets the needs of youth who “age out” of the state’s developmental disabilities system at age 18 but continue to require 24-hour comprehensive care. This new home is located in Hillsboro and serves three young adults at one time.

In September 2010, the Kerr Early Childhood Intervention Program underwent a significant change in the way it serves the children in its care – young children, ages three to five years, with significant mental health challenges and behavioral difficulties. This change was in response to best practices that now show that children with mental health challenges are best served when they are able to remain in their own community, when possible
and not cared for in a residential living facility or schooled in a separate classroom from their peers.

In response to this updated, preferred model of serving children in their own natural environment, Kerr has closed its therapeutic preschool classroom and now serves children in their original preschool or kindergarten classroom to stabilize their placement and prevent them from being removed. Now, through Early Childhood Outpatient Services, skills trainers and therapists work closely with the child and school staff members on-site and also provide at-home family support to address any parenting issues or family problems impacting the child’s behavior or performance at school.

In 2010, Kerr also began a home environment improvement project  seeks to ensure each Kerr group home for youth offers a welcoming, positive family-like atmosphere for the children who live there – children, ages 10 to 18, who have both a mental health challenge and developmental disability. A pilot project was completed at one home and funding has been secured to provide improvements at five additional homes in the next year.

In 2010 Kerr opened a new group home specifically designed to serve transition age young adults, ages 18 to 21, who have both a developmental disability and mental health challenge. This home is unique in that it meets the needs of youth who “age out” of the state’s developmental disabilities system at age 18 but continue to require 24-hour comprehensive care. This new home is located in Hillsboro and serves three young adults at one time.

In September 2010, the Kerr Early Childhood Intervention Program underwent a significant change in the way it serves the children in its care – young children, ages three to five years, with significant mental health challenges and behavioral difficulties. This change was in response to best practices that now show that children with mental health challenges are best served when they are able to remain in their own community, when possible
and not cared for in a residential living facility or schooled in a separate classroom from their peers.

In response to this updated, preferred model of serving children in their own natural environment, Kerr has closed its therapeutic preschool classroom and now serves children in their original preschool or kindergarten classroom to stabilize their placement and prevent them from being removed. Now, through Early Childhood Outpatient Services, skills trainers and therapists work closely with the child and school staff members on-site and also provide at-home family support to address any parenting issues or family problems impacting the child’s behavior or performance at school.

In 2010, Kerr also began a home environment improvement project  seeks to ensure each Kerr group home for youth offers a welcoming, positive family-like atmosphere for the children who live there – children, ages 10 to 18, who have both a mental health challenge and developmental disability. A pilot project was completed at one home and funding has been secured to provide improvements at five additional homes in the next year.

Oct 28, 2010

Army of Angels Project Report

Specialized Foster Care Services
Specialized Foster Care Services

THE ARMY OF ANGELS CREATES STABILTY AND HOPE WITH TREATMENT AND LOVE

This summer, five children moved into stable, loving homes through Albertina Kerr’s new Treatment Foster Care Program. While intensive mental health challenges previously limited them to residential care, they now have the opportunity to live, learn and play in their own communities.

 After the first month in his new home, one young boy began acting out after a second child joined the family. With patience and love, his foster parents, Rose Braxton-Lyons and Doug Lyons, worked with him to identify what was triggering his behavior and help him find solutions. 

 “He said, ‘I was jealous when the other kid came because I thought you guys were going to forget about me.’ He didn’t understand that we’d give them both a lot of attention,” Rose said. “Now we’re working on problem solving how they can get along and know that they both have us.”

 As one of the first three foster families in Albertina Kerr’s Treatment Foster Care Program, Rose and Doug have plenty of love to go around. In the 15 years that they’ve been foster parents, they’ve cared for more than 30 children, staying in touch with many of them into adulthood. Their experience and success made them ideal candidates to be Treatment Foster Care parents.

 All Albertina Kerr foster care programs specialize in caring for children with mental health challenges and developmental disabilities. But the new treatment program serves those with the greatest needs, providing children with a home- and community-based alternative to restrictive residential settings. Foster parents recruited for the program have extensive experience working with challenging children. In addition to the training and ongoing support all foster families receive, treatment foster families receive 24-hour emergency response and clinical oversight from a therapist, which equips them to provide active and structured treatment in their homes. Three families are caring for children now, and Albertina Kerr plans to recruit and train a total of 10 families.

 “We got involved because it opened doors to give kids more help.” Rose said.

“The extra training helped us understand things that we didn’t know about before. It was like – bing – the light came on.”

 Rose credits the Albertina Kerr therapist they work with as a key part of their success with the two children now in their care. “She’s not only good for the kids, but she’s good for us: training us, preparing us and guiding us. It has helped a lot. She’s there for us, no matter what. It helps us be better parents to these kids.”

 Many of the children in Treatment Foster Care have never known permanence and stability. Providing it is the first step in helping them overcome challenges and succeed.

 “We never give up on any of our kids, and that’s what we’re working to make clear now,” Rose said. “These two kids have been in 15 or 16 homes, and one had a box that he never wanted to unpack because he was used to just blowing out and taking the box to the next place. So I told him, ‘It’s not happening here. Unpack. You’re here. We’re just going to work through it.”

 Since then, the child has settled into his own room and compiled a Christmas wish list with his foster brother. To Rose, that list is a big breakthrough. “It was them saying, ‘We plan to be here for Christmas. We want to be here.” 

 ALBERTINA KERR SERVICE UPDATE

Albertina Kerr helps children begin to recover from past experiences of abuse and neglect, address mental and emotional health challenges and receive life skills training and support to overcome obstacles related to both mental health challenges and developmental disabilities. Kerr also provides a wide range of care for adults with developmental disabilities aimed at allowing individuals to live the fullest and least restrictive life possible.

 

Donations from our community directly contribute to these outcomes and help Albertina Kerr achieve its mission of supporting people with developmental disabilities and mental health challenges to lead self-determined lives and realize their full potential.In the last year, Kerr’s program’s reported the following results:

 

Developmental Disabilities Services

 

Group Homes for Youth: Kerr provided 24-hour care and treatment for 103 youth, ages 9 to 18, with developmental disabilities and mental health challenges in 15 group homes. Eighty-five percent of the youth met their personal goals or are making significant, positive progress.  

 

Group Homes for Adults: Kerr provided a neighborhood home in a residential community for 120 men and women with developmental disabilities in 28 group homes and served 109 adults with developmental disabilities in Community Inclusion programs where participants entered the work force, joined in community activities and pursued hobbies. 92% of all adults with disabilities met their personal goals or are well on their way.  

 

Skills Training and Supported Living

Kerr provided 6 men and women with developmental disabilities who live in their own home and require assistance in improving their skills in personal care, cooking, shopping and other daily activities.

 

Youth &Family Services 

 

Intensive Community-Based Treatment Services

Kerr served 103 low-income children, ages 4 to 17, with emotional and behavioral health challenges who were at risk of losing their home or school placement. Therapy, skills training, and intensive behavioral support allowed 83% of children to remain safely in their home setting.

 

Crisis Psychiatric Care

Kerr provided who short-term crisis psychiatric care for 314 children who posed an immediate danger to themselves or others. 98% of children were stabilized and able to successfully transition to a less intensive level of care, including returning to their family.

 

Community-Based Outpatient Services

Kerr provided services to 174 children who required mental health treatment, skills training, and family support to be maintained in the community and out of institutions.

 

Kerr Early Intervention Program – KEIP

Kerr provided served 58 children ages 3-5 with emotional issues and learning delays, with 93% prepared to enter kindergarten and ready to learn. In partnership with the Multnomah Early Childhood Program, the children and their families received preschool education, therapy and counseling.

 

Special Needs & Therapeutic Foster Care

Kerr provided care for 57 children in foster care who have both mental health challenges and developmental disabilities and require skills training and extensive foster parent support.

 

While Kerr positively impacted the lives of more than 1,200 children, adults and families in the last year, the need for services remains great and more work needs to be done.

Community support will help Kerr’s programs continue to grow and be successful.

 

For youth faced with a mental health challenge, as well as a developmental disability, this means providing a safe, supportive group home where each child can work to overcome significant challenges and build the social, emotional and daily life skills needed for future independence. For a child pulled from an unsafe family and placed into foster care, this means being a lifeline to stability and a brighter future. For a child in the midst of a frightening, even life-threatening, mental health crisis, this means being a safety net offering immediate security and stabilization.

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Organization

Albertina Kerr Centers Foundation

Portland, OR, United States

Project Leader

Nanda Sturm

Associate Director, Corporate Development & Giving
Portland, Oregon United States

Where is this project located?

Map of Army of Angels