Working with Youth Exposed to Violence in Mental Health and Advocacy Settings: Tools and Techniques for Mental Health Professionals and Advocates - WICHITA

AUDIENCE:  Mental health professionals including social workers, psychologists, individual and family therapists, clinicians and supervisors; domestic violence and sexual assault advocates

Presented by:

Kansas Coalition Against Sexual and Domestic Violence
Metropolitan Organization to Counter Sexual Assault



According to, one in three adolescents in the U.S. is a victim of physical, sexual, emotional or verbal abuse from a dating partner, a figure that far exceeds rates of other types of youth violence (Davis, A. 2008).

The objective of this training is for mental health practitioners and advocates to have an increased knowledge and skills related to appropriate strategies for providing therapy, counseling, and advocacy for youth between the ages of 8-18 who are exposed to domestic violence, teen dating violence, sexual violence, and co-occurring bullying with support of their non-abusing parents and/or caregiver. This training provides trauma informed, supportive techniques of grounding and relaxation for youth to alleviate the impacts of exposure to violence. Additionally, mental health professionals and advocates will receive helpful resources and tools to put into practice when addressing the effects and impacts of exposure to violence. Participants will learn methods to provide services to youth that promote resiliency and safety in a variety of settings, to include clinical and domestic and sexual violence advocacy programs.

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About the Presenters:

Sarah O’Keefe is a Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC) in the state of Missouri.  She has a Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology and Spanish from Northwest Missouri State University, and a Master of Arts degree in Counseling and Guidance from the University of Missouri-Kansas City.  Sarah’s practice focus has been in helping survivors of sexual abuse and sexual assault. Her skills and training have been utilized in her role as a therapist at the Metropolitan Organization to Counter Sexual Assault (MOCSA) and in private practice.  She works with children, teens, and adult survivors of all genders, as well as youth with problematic sexual behaviors. She has special interest in ways pornography impacts the culture we live in (i.e. relationships, the brain, gender-based violence, self-worth, body image) and working with clients in a Health At Every Size informed and trauma informed approach.  She is a Level 2 trained EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing) therapist, a nationally certified TF-CBT (Trauma-Focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy) therapist, and has training in Play Therapy and Sand Tray therapy. 

Carolyn M. Allred is the Child and Youth Project Manager with the Kansas Coalition Against Sexual and Domestic Violence. Prior to KCSDV, Carolyn provided advocacy to survivors of domestic and sexual violence at the YWCA Women’s Crisis Center, with an emphasis on providing advocacy and mentoring services for children and youth. She has experience advocating for survivors within systems, specializing in advocacy among the criminal justice system. Passionate about incorporating youth voice within the juvenile justice system she served in the capacity of a Court Appointed Special Advocate with CASA. She studied criminal justice at Wichita State University, and completed an individualized directed study with a focus on expanding training for law enforcement responding to calls of domestic violence with children present. Carolyn enjoys being a mother to her golden retriever who has been along her side along the way.

This training was made possible by Grant Number 90EV0446 from the Administration on Children, Youth and Families, Family and Youth Services Bureau, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.  Its contents are solely the responsibility of the authors and do not necessarily represent the official views of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

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Total Training Hours: 5

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