Children’s Bureau of New Orleans Presents Training on Grief and Trauma Treatment Model, Seeks to Expand Reach of Mental Health Services

Event will take place during Mental Health Awareness Month

As part of its observance of Mental Health Awareness Month, the Children’s Bureau of New Orleans and Allison Salloum, Ph.D. will present a two-day workshop May 20-21 to train mental health professionals from across the region on its nationally-recognized Grief and Trauma Intervention treatment model. The development of this treatment is especially significant in light of growing evidence that children, especially inner city kids, are impacted by traumatic events just as soldiers are during war.

Developed by Dr. Salloum and her colleagues during their time at the Children’s Bureau, the Grief and Trauma Intervention for Children (GTI) is an evidence-based mental health intervention specifically designed for children with posttraumatic stress due to witnessing or experiencing a traumatic event and/or death. The 10-session intervention is conducted in group and/or individual format. Evaluation results published in the Journal of Clinical Child and Adolescent Psychology and Behavior Research and Therapy show that GTI results in improvements of posttraumatic stress, depression and traumatic grief symptoms.

A national survey by the U.S. Department of Justice shows that approximately 60% of youth have been exposed to some type of violence in the past year. The Children’s Bureau’s work with children in New Orleans supports these statistics. Results from its own survey of 122 Orleans Parish students indicate 71% of children have seen someone beat up; 32% have seen someone shot; 28% have seen a dead body outside or inside the home; and 16% have seen someone stabbed. For the majority of these children, exposure to community violence is chronic with more than half of them (51.5%) reporting exposure to three or more different types of violent events.

Children’s Bureau to Celebrate Mental Health Awareness Month in May

Children’s Mental Health Awareness Day also celebrated Thursday, May 9

The Children’s Bureau of New Orleans will take part in celebrating May as National Mental Health Awareness Month and Thursday, May 9 as Children’s Mental Health Awareness Day. These nationally-recognized observances, created by Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMSHA), provide the Children’s Bureau with an opportunity to spread the word locally about the importance of mental health.

“Good mental health is essential to the overall health and well-being of individuals and the community at large,” says Paulette Carter, president and CEO of the Children’s Bureau of New Orleans. “It impacts everything from whether a child gets up and goes to school in the morning to avoiding potential violent situations like shootings, or even worse, massacres like the one at Sandy Hook Elementary School. We want people to understand that prevention works and treatment is available. Through the national observance of Children’s Mental Health Awareness Day, we celebrate the fact that children and youth can and do recover from setbacks in their lives with the proper support.”

The Children’s Bureau will feature a series of representative stories about some of their client* throughout the month on their Facebook page. The agency is also holding a training seminar for mental health professionals on its nationally-recognized Grief and Trauma treatment model in May. And finally, the agency will cap off the month with a party and fundraiser for its supporters at Rock N’ Bowl on Friday, May 31, 2013. For more details on these events, contact Amy Collins at

*Names and specific details are changed to protect the identity of our clients.

Children’s Bureau of New Orleans Supports HB 595

For many years, the New Orleans Adolescent Hospital (NOAH) was an institution that stood at the center of New Orleans’ mental health service system for children and youth. The closing of NOAH in 2009 created a significant fissure in this system. Two bills filed in the current legislative session have reignited discussion around NOAH and the services it provided.

HB 546 allows Children’s Hospital to buy the NOAH property without the restrictions mandated in a law passed in 2012 that gave Children’s Hospital the preferential status to lease the property as long they expanded mental health services for children and adolescents at NOAH.

HB 595 requires Children’s Hospital to use NOAH for mental health services, and, if Children’s Hospital refused to do so, would allow for Ochsner to lease the facility. If Ochsner declined to offer mental health services, the property would be put out to bid.

We at the Children’s Bureau of New Orleans, a leading nonprofit mental health agency providing counseling and intervention services to some of the community’s neediest children, encourage legislators to examine the bills before them carefully with the needs of our children in mind.

Children’s Bureau of New Orleans Receives “NOLA for Life” Grant

The Children’s Bureau of New Orleans is proud to announce it has received a $10,000 grant from the City of New Orleans and Greater New Orleans Foundation through their NOLA for Life initiative. The grant will support the ongoing work of the Project LAST grief and trauma program developed to help children who have been a victim of or witness to violent crime in our community.

Developed in May 2012, NOLA FOR LIFE is New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu’s comprehensive murder reduction strategy to tackle the city’s historically-high murder rate. Recognizing that law enforcement alone cannot solve the murder problem, the NOLA FOR LIFE plan takes a holistic approach to get to the root of the problem, and divides the plan into five main categories including: Stop the Shooting; Invest in Prevention; Promote Jobs and Opportunity; Improve the NOPD; and Get Involved and Rebuild Neighborhoods. Development of the NOLA FOR LIFE plan was fueled by the Mayor’s Innovation Delivery Team and the City’s public safety and public health experts. For more information, visit