SVN's 24th Annual Conference Clearwater Beach, FloridaMay 27- May 30, 2015
SAVE the DATE!
Rooms will be available for only $119/night at this beachside resort.
Like to plan early? You can make reservations HERE
"Innovation, Integration, and Intervention"
Addressing the Unique Challenges of Families in Supervised VisitationThe 2015 SVN Annual Conference will feature plenary sessions and workshops that address how trauma, mental health, and substance abuse impact our work in supervised visitation. Workshops and plenary sessions will focus on how to best serve the unique needs of these families and offer innovative approaches to enhancing our services for all participants
Plenary SpeakersChristina Meredith spent her childhood in Florida. However, unlike the sunny Florida weather, her youth was met with abuse and instability at home. Shortly after she finished 8th grade Christina and her seven brothers and sisters were placed in the care of family and friends to escape the abuse they had been exposed to. As a teen Christina excelled in athletics, but despite her high school achievements, she was continuing to suffer abuse at home and was eventually entered into the Florida Foster Care System. She remained in foster care until she was 18, when she aged out of the system. With no money or family support, Christina was homeless and living out of her car.
During that time, she made her way across the U.S and settled in California hoping to start a career as a fitness model. While struggling to make her way in the industry, a friend pointed her in the direction of the Ms. California pageant. With the support of local businesses, friends and even other women competing, Christina entered the pageant. Much to her delight, she claimed the crown and her dream of helping young girls who have ben abused and are passing through the foster care system had a platform.
Turning adversity and misfortune into hope and resilience, Christina has made it her mission to help other young women who face her same adversities. She is now a nationally recognized speaker and a well known advocate for foster youth. Knowing first hand what young women face when aging out of the foster care system and as a survivor of domestic abuse is what inspired Christina to establish her non-profit Strength For Our Daughters.
Ricky Roberts III is the author of four books, YOU, What Really Matters, Where Did the Gift Go, Awakening the New You: A Path to Transformation, youth advocate, speaker, and visionary. Roberts believes that everyone matters and deserves to know it. This belief inspired him to cre- ate YOU ARE VALUED a nonprofit organization that inspires youth (all people for that matter) to see the value in who they are, and appreciate the same in others. Roberts has the privilege to connect with 1000's of youth and adults, on a yearly basis, in a wide variety of settings from maximum-security detention centers to national conferences to middle and high school class- rooms.
As a young person Roberts was exposed to, and experienced, abuse on many levels, which im- pacted his perception of love, and his self worth. After being stabbed nine-times at the age of 17, Roberts let go of his role as a victim, and began to ask: how he can use everything he has experienced to impact others in a positive way. Roberts takes everything he has learned, not only from his own healing process, but those he has had the privilege to help in theirs, and fuses it into his continued effort to best understand how he may be of service to others.
Today, Ricky inspires through his writings, speaking engagements, workshops, youth outreach, volunteer work, efforts with the YOU ARE VALUED movement (which has reached as far as Indonesia and Paris, and continues to expand in the states), and his interaction with others in his daily living. He is dedicated to reaching people in a positive way wherever he may be. His cen- tral message, and focus, in all he does is to let others know they are valued.
Paton Blough is a mental health advocate and speaker based in Greenville, S.C. Affected with Bipolar I Disorder, Blough works tirelessly as a voice for everyone who has dealt firsthand with the weight of the stigma surrounding mental illness. Paton is living proof that with support and appropriate treatment, those suffering from mental illness can overcome their issues and lead healthy, happy lives.
Paton has been free from severe depression and psychosis now for four years and has been blessed with a wife who understands his struggles and works with him to change the perspectives of people about mental health. Paton was honored as the 2011 "Recovery Member of the Year" award from NAMI South Carolina. He has started a nonprofit organization, Rehinge, "to provide hope, education, and spiritual inspiration for all people affected with mental health issues and to fight stigma while pushing for global mental health reform".