THRIVE presenting at The National Technical Assistance Center for Children’s Mental Health at the Georgetown University Center for Child and Human Development. July 16 – 20, 2014

April 10th, 2014

Click Here to read about the Training Institutes

March 11th, 2014

Please Subscribe to receive updates and newsletters

Children’s Mental Health Awareness and Maine’s Department of Continuous Quality Improvement: THRIVE snapshot

June 11th, 2013

May is Children’s Mental Health Awareness Month and Maine continues to provide leadership on the subject of mental health and trauma.  James Yoe, PhD, Director of the Office of Quality Improvement for Maine’s Department of Health and Human Services and also the lead evaluator for the THRIVE Initiative’s original SAMHSA grant, provides a snapshot of THRIVE’s data and poses questions that every system of care should consider.

“Trauma Exposure and Post Traumatic Stress Among THRIVE System of Care Participants”: one of a two part series highlighting the importance of creating a trauma-informed system of care. Published in the May 2013 Quality Improvement Snapshot report.

Maine’s Office of Continuous Quality Improvement May 2013 QI Data Snapshot THRIVE

THRIVE and Youth MOVE Maine featured in the New England Psychologist

December 13th, 2012

“Programs Help Teens Connect to Services” is in the December 2012 issue of the New England Psychologist. The article highlights the two SAMHSA grants awarded to THRIVE and Youth MOVE Maine in partnership with Maine’s Department of Corrections’ Division of Juvenile Services to  improve services and supports for Maine’s youth.

“The work is recognizing that the trauma is pervasive, and as a system we don’t always do a very good job of identifying it in children and youth,” says Arabella Perez, THRIVE executive director. To read more visit the New England Psychologist.

Moving: THRIVE, Youth MOVE & Diversion to Assets

September 4th, 2012

THRIVE has new role in Juvenile Services grant,
Youth MOVE has new grant for Youth Courts

LEWISTON – As of October 1, THRIVE and Youth MOVE Maine (“Youth MOVE”) have new homes and new federal Substance and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) grants to support. Diversion to Assets, Androscoggin County’s alternative juvenile corrections program, has also moved from previously shared office space at 124 Canal Street.

THRIVE is the newly announced training and technical assistance partner for the Department of Corrections Division of Juvenile Services’ new four-year, $4 million SAMHSA grant, Expanding Trauma-Informed System of Care Practices in Maine. THRIVE’s new operations center for trauma-informed training and technical assistance is located at 26 Bridgton Road, Westbrook.

“Lewiston was well-suited for our first six years serving mental health agencies and community-based programs in the Tri-County area,” said Arabella Perez, THRIVE Executive Director. “We became an independent organization last October and expanded our services state and nationwide adding juvenile corrections as a child-serving systems partner. We are thoroughly pleased that the work with Maine’s juvenile services will continue through this new grant. The move complements our new business model.”

Youth MOVE, the statewide chapter of Youth Move National, received its own three-year $600,000 grant to establish Youth Courts in the greater Brunswick and Portland areas.

“We’ve expanded from one to four regions since 2009,” said Ryun Anderson, Youth MOVE Maine Director, “offering young people skills building workshops and opportunities to join committees and workgroups that guide the improvement of mental health, child welfare and juvenile justice service delivery. The Youth Court grant allows us to collaborate with partners and further develop programs they established for prevention, treatment and recovery support for 11-18 year olds with first-time, non-violent offenses who are also at risk for substance abuse and mental health challenges. These youth and young adults will also receive skills-building opportunities within a restorative justice framework.”

Youth MOVE’s temporary central office is at The Community School at Opportunity Farm in New Gloucester. The Diversion to Assets program and Youth MOVE’s Lewiston group have moved to new meeting and office space in town at Tree Street Youth Center.

Maine Awareness Campaign Receives Bronze Award

July 28th, 2012

Children’s Mental Health Awareness Campaign Wins Bronze for
Excellence in Community Communications & Outreach

ORLANDO, FL - G.E.A.R. Parent Network and Youth MOVE Maine accepted the bronze award in the Children’s Mental Health Awareness Campaign category on behalf of collaborative partners Children’s Behavioral Health Services and THRIVE at the Excellence in Community Communications and Outreach recognition ceremony July 26. The awards are sponsored by the federal Substance and Mental Health Services Administration’s Caring for Every Child’s Mental Health Campaign.

G.E.A.R. launched Maine’s monthlong award-winning 2011 campaign with its traditional Tailgate Kick-off for families, youth and child-serving health and human services providers in the parking lot of the Office of Child and Family Services. During the first two weeks of May, G.E.A.R.’s Family Advisory Councils for Empowerment Statewide distributed 140 toolkits to mental health agencies and other community-based, child-serving organizations from Caribou to South Portland. The kits contained a total of 35,000 children’s mental health awareness items.

“We asked providers to share the contents with the families they serve,” said Carol Tiernan, G.E.A.R. Director. “The kits contained information on where to go for support groups and workshops, articles and personal stories  of hope and resiliency, explanatory cards to hand out when a child is acting up , inspirational magnets, and sunflower seed packets from our conference with Youth MOVE.”

At the annual Children’s Mental Health Awareness Day celebration at the State Capitol’s Hall of Flags, more than 30 service providers heard seven youth and family members share inspiring stories of resiliency and emotional wellness in the face of challenges ranging from abuse and teen pregnancy, juvenile incarceration and autism to a learning disability and depression. Adults spoke of the difference a family organization can make, as well as the benefits of intergenerational resiliency.

“We’re delighted that our Hall of Flag speaker was part of a larger story that ran during the May campaign detailing our expanding efforts statewide to support youth in Maine,” said Ryun Anderson, Youth MOVE Maine Director. May has been national Mental Health month since 1949.

The final piece of the campaign was the “What Families and Youth Want” conference hosted by G.E.A.R. and Youth MOVE Maine with keynote speaker Stan Davis of Stop Bullying Now. Approximately 180 family members, youth and providers were treated to a full day of workshops and activities.

#     #     #

G.E.A.R. Parent Network empowers parents of children with emotional and behavioral health needs to effect life decisions based on their family’s individual strengths and needs by providing safe and supportive avenues for: emotional support, problem solving, sharing common experiences, seeking knowledge about community resources and advocacy, identifying the strengths and needs of their child(ren) and families and accessing information and education related to children’s issues.
Youth Move Maine, a state chapter of Youth Move National, supports youth and adults with experience in service systems in building the skills, partnerships, policies and practices essential to making sure all youth are connected, resilient, growing and included in the decisions that impact their lives. For more information, go to: www.youthmovemaine.org
THRIVE trauma-informed trainings and technical assistance help child-serving providers and community organizations transform the way services are delivered to children and youth with serious behavioral health challenges and to their families.

Juvenile Corrections Training Features ACES Researcher

June 26th, 2012

Vincent Felitti, M.D. co-principal investigator of the Adverse Childhood Experiences Study, addresses Maine Juvenile Corrections workers at a trauma-informed training conference. (Tsukroff photo)

AUGUSTA – The Maine Department of Corrections Division of Juvenile Services, in collaboration with its Juvenile Justice Advisory Group and Lewiston-based THRIVE, hosted  Dr. Vincent Felitti, M.D., co-principal investigator of the landmark Adverse Childhood Experiences Study (ACES)  and Karen Williams, MSSW, delinquency prevention consultant, at a trauma-informed staff training conference June 19-20.  

Ms. Williams used neuroscientific research and illustrations to present to over 100 juvenile community corrections officers and facilities workers, regional managers, family members, youth and community-based service representatives how traumatic stress impacts adolescent brain development and influences behavior, and how positive experiences can counter the negative stress effects into young adulthood.  

Dr. Felitti used data from the landmark ACES to detail the prevalance in the general population of persons with multiple trauma experiences and the stunning implications for physical and mental health across affected lifetimes. He also explained how identifying and addressing traumatic events has the potential to mitigate the astronomical costs to society associated with unidentified and unadressed multiple traumas. Arabella Perez, Executive Director, explained how the ACES had informed the foundation of THRIVE’s Trauma-Informed Agency Assessment, which has collected and evaluated data on such experiences from children’s behavioral health agencies throughout Maine.     

“THRIVE is excited to partner with Maine’s juvenile corrections division,” said Perez, “which is already recognized nationally for its service excellence. We look forward to integrating our trainings and assessments to enhance the trauma-informed, family, youth and cultural aspects of those services.”  

“We are so fortunate to have all this expertise to work with as we continue our focus on strengths-based planning as it relates to risk reduction, public safety and the principles of effective intervention,” said Barry Stoodley, Associate Commissioner and Director of Maine’s Juvenile Corrections Services. 

#           #         #  

THRIVE trauma-informed trainings, technical assistance and consultation support child-serving providers’  organizational transformation of service delivery to children and youth with serious behavioral health challenges and to their families. THRIVE is funded by the federal Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration and by Maine’s Children’s Behavioral Health Services. 

Youth MOVE ME Wins Youth Empowerment Award

June 4th, 2012


Youth MOVE Maine award-winning staff (back from left): Jozalynn “Joz” Jones, Old Town;
Ashalie Wark, Manchester; Chesari Tempesta, Turner; Jennifer Herrick, Lewiston;
Jacinta Storer, Auburn, Diversion to Assets Coordinator; Ryun Anderson, Freeport;
(front from left): Dustin Stout, Lewiston, intern; Chelsey Everest, Portland; not shown: Faith Stevens, Rockland.  

LEWISTON – Youth MOVE Maine (YMM) received the Maine Youth Action Network (MYAN) ImpACT Award June 6 for being an Empowering Organization and “exemplifying the systematic engagement of youth ages 12-18 in decision-making and planning.”  The annual awards recognize youth and adults who are making an impact in their communities.

“We’ve expanded from one to five regions in the last two years,” says Youth MOVE Maine Director Ryun Anderson, “and tripled the number of participants. Our new website, www.youthmovemaine.org, and our Facebook page showcase the areas of leadership development, skill building, mutual support, community awareness and provider support, in which youth are creating positive change across Maine.”

#          #          #

YMM, a state chapter of Youth Move National, supports youth and adults with experience in service systems in building the skills, partnerships, policies and practices essential to making sure all youth are connected, resilient, growing and included in the decisions that impact their lives. For more information, go to: www.youthmovemaine.org

MYAN, a program of the Opportunity Alliance, offers training, networking and leadership opportunities to youth and adults seeking partnerships for positive change.

THRIVE Nominated for Community Hero Award

March 19th, 2012

From left: Renelle Ray, Volunteer of the Year; Karen Voci, Executive Director, Harvard Pilgrim Foundation; Susan Greenwood, Executive Director, The Cromwell Center; Janet Wyper, Manager of Community Relations, LL Bean; and Ed Kane, Harvard Pilgrim Vice President, Maine

Harvard Pilgrim Hosts ’12 Spirit Awards

Portland – Harvard Pilgrim Healthcare Foundation feted Arabella Perez, Director, THRIVE, and fellow nominees at its Maine 2012 Community Spirit Awards March 15 at Portland Harbor Hotel. Fourteen total individuals and organizations in Maine, New Hampshire and Massachusetts were hailed by Foundation colleagues for their “deep commitment to giving,” their good corporate citizenship and public advocacy. THRIVE was nominated in the Community Hero category.

The Selection Committee comprising 2010 and 2011 Community Spirit Award recipients chose Renelle Ray as Maine’s Volunteer of the Year and The Cromwell Center for Disabilities Awareness as Maine’s Community Hero.

Children’s Mental Health Awareness Week 2012

February 9th, 2012

May 6-12 is Children’s Mental Health Awareness Week this year. The National Federation of Families for Children’s Mental Health chosen theme is Youth Overcoming Trauma.

Awareness Week is dedicated to sharing stories of resiliency with the public and increasing support for the triumphs and challenges of these young people. The more family and youth involvement in the movement, the better!

As a community partner in Maine’s System of Care, THRIVE joins the Federation’s statewide chapter, G.E.A.R. Parent Network, and all families who can relate, in promoting positive mental health, well-being and social development for all young people. 

  • Mental health is essential to overall health and well being.
  • Serious emotional and mental health challenges in children and youth are real and treatable.
  • Children and youth with mental health challenges and their families deserve access to services and supports that are family driven, youth guided and culturally appropriate.
  • Values of acceptance, dignity and social inclusion should be promoted throughout all communities for children, youth and families.
  • Family and youth voice is a valued asset in determining appropriate services and interventions.