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RCCP in Israel, meeting and presenting on their Therapeutic Crisis Intervention system

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Linda Avitan, Dr. Renata Gorbatov, Martha Holden, Andrea Turnbull, and Yael Bohak.

Linda Avitan, Dr. Renata Gorbatov, Martha Holden, Andrea Turnbull, and Yael Bohak.

Martha Holden (director) and Andrea Turnbull (extension associate) of the Residential Child Care Project (RCCP) visited Israel to participate in meetings with the Ministry of Social Affairs and Services and the National Therapeutic Crisis Intervention (TCI) steering committee. They presented on current research and the status of the TCI program to directors, teachers, and residential personnel, compared survey results with Israeli researchers, re-certified Israeli TCI instructors, and visited two residential programs that use TCI. The RCCP's  TCI system provides a crisis prevention and intervention model for residential child care organizations.

TCI Israel continues to be a very effective and impressive model of how government can support residential programs in their implementation of TCI and keep fidelity to the model. Negotiations with the Ministry to adopt TCI as their crisis prevention and management model for residential facilities began in 2002. Since then, TCI has been successfully implemented in twenty-seven facilities and the Ministry hopes to expand the program in the coming year. Considering TCI their most important program, the Ministry has devoted more resources to its implementing than to any other initiative.

Part of the program delivered to Ministry personnel, regional and residential directors, TCI trainers, and residential personnel included results from the U.S. TCI fidelity study examining how agencies implemented TCI and the subsequent impact on staff and programs. Israeli researchers Dr. Renata Gorbatov and Yael Bohak had conducted a similar study in Israeli agencies using TCI with similar findings. There was much discussion about how many more commonalities than differences are found in the residential care agencies across nations.

(1) Comment.  |   Tags: Andrea Turnbull    international    Martha Holden    RCCP   

Positive youth development in the global recession

(0) Comments  |   Tags: international,   Mary Agnes Hamilton,   Stephen Hamilton,   youth,  


Patricio Cumsille, Bernadine Brady, Mary Agnes Hamilton, Stephen Hamilton, Loreto Martínez, and Susana Núñez Rodríguez.

Stephen Hamilton (BCTR associate director for youth development) organized and chaired a symposium on Youth-Adult Relationships as Assets for Positive Youth Development: Similarities and Variations in Different Countries for the Society for Research in Child Development (SRCD) Special Topic Meeting on Positive Youth Development in the Context of the Global Recession in Prague. Mary Agnes Hamilton delivered a paper by Stephen Hamilton, David L. DuBois, and Deborah E. Sellers, Functional Roles & Social Contexts of Important Adults Identified by Youth in the US. The other included papers were:

  • How Do Mentors Support Young People? Qualitative Evidence from an Irish Study by Patrick Dolan and Bernadine Brady (presenter), National University of Ireland, Galway
  • Quality of Youth-Adult Relationships and Sociopolitical Control: Mediating Role of Identity by M. Loreto Martínez (presenter), Patricio Cumsille, Ignacio Loyola Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile, Santiago, and Cristina Valenzuela Universidad Autónoma de Chile, Santiago
  • Differences in Youth Perceived Autonomy According to Socio-economic Characteristics in the Brazilian Context by Susana Núñez Rodríguez (presenter), and Silvia Koller, Federal University of Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil

Youth have been particularly hard hit by the global economic recession. Many young people are trapped in endless cycles of unemployment, underemployment and being forced back to education due to a lack of work. Skilled young graduates often decide to migrate to wealthier countries for a better future. However, the economic crisis may also have long-lasting and pervasive consequences on youth’s adaptation and development. It thwarts the aspirations and goals for the future of young people, and presents serious obstacles in their professional and personal adaptation. This conference examined

  • the effects of the economic downturn for youth’s adaptation and development;
  • what makes a difference for those who are able to more successfully navigate through this situation;
  • how to support youth to become the engines of hope and change in their countries;
  • and what scientists from different countries can learn from each other.

(0) Comments.  |   Tags: international    Mary Agnes Hamilton    Stephen Hamilton    youth   

Visiting fellow Ravhee Bholah joins the center this semester

(0) Comments  |   Tags: ACT for Youth,   environment,   health,   international,   Jennifer Tiffany,   sexual health,   visiting fellow,  

news-bholah-inpostRavhee Bholah, an associate professor at the Mauritius Institute of Education, received a Fulbright Scholarship to study policy and community partnerships that promote adolescent sexual health, with a particular focus on school-based programs. He plays leading roles in curriculum development on sexual health, HIV prevention, and education for sustainable development in the Republic of Mauritius. Ravhee works closely with the United Nations Development Programme, UNESCO, the Swedish International Centre of Education for Sustainable Development, and the Southern African Development Community Regional Environmental Education Programme on regional programs addressing these issues. He has been a member of various committees at national and regional levels. For instance, he has been the chairperson of Network of African Science Academies Expert Group Committee since 2012 and a member of the South African Development Community Education for Sustainable Development Research Network since 2008. At national level in Mauritius, he is a member of steering committees at the Ministry of Education and Human Resources for the following: (1) Sexuality Education, (2) Health and (3) Climate Change Adaptation. He is a board member of the National Ramsar Committee in Mauritius. He has also done considerable work on climate change education. Ravhee will be working in the BCTR as a visiting fellow through the end of December.

He will be mentored by Jennifer Tiffany during his time at Cornell, and he will be working very closely with the ACT for Youth Center of Excellence.

Ravhee is joined his wife Rouma and their three sons, Divyesh, Sudhakar, and Prabhakar, ages 10, 12, and 15, respectively.

(0) Comments.  |   Tags: ACT for Youth    environment    health    international    Jennifer Tiffany    sexual health    visiting fellow   

2013 Iscol Lecture: Leila Janah, Monday, September 30, 2013

(0) Comments  |   Tags: international,   Iscol Family Program,   Iscol Lecture,   poverty,   technology,  

Samasource: A Sustainable Solution to Global Poverty
Leila Janah, Samasource

Monday, September 30, 2013
7:30 PM
Kennedy Hall, Call Auditorium

Samasource in Kenya

Come hear the story of how the award-winning  non-profit Samasource was founded and find out how Samasource survived during its most rapid and tumultuous period of growth: the start-up years. Learn from Leila Janah, Samasource Founder and CEO, who went from being a student of international development and budding travel writer to a world-renowned technology leader. Beyond the media hype and the awards Samasource has received in its relatively short existence for their global poverty solution, Leila will share with us her experiences of the fast and furious, iterative process of building a company with real revenue streams. Beyond inspiring to be driven by social mission, Leila will delve into the fundamental secret of social entrepreneurship: survival hinges on getting things done and never giving up. And because there is no road map, recognizing that getting lost along the way is usually when you end up finding yourself… and your product.

Leila Janah is the founder and CEO of Samasource. She serves on the boards of CARE, OneLeap, and TechSoup Global and as an advisor to mobile shopping app RevelTouch.

Prior to Samasource, Janah was a Visiting Scholar with the Stanford Program on Global Justice and Australian National University’s Center for Applied Philosophy and Public Ethics. She was a founding Director of Incentives for Global Health, an initiative to increase R&D spending on diseases of the poor, and a management consultant at Katzenbach Partners (now Booz & Co.). She has also worked at the World Bank and as a travel writer for Let’s Go in Mozambique, Brazil, and Borneo.

She is the recipient of a 2011 World Technology Award and a 2012 TechFellow Award. She received a BA from Harvard.

(0) Comments.  |   Tags: international    Iscol Family Program    Iscol Lecture    poverty    technology   

Evidence on child well-being across the globe

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"Ensuring children grow up to be healthy, productive and fulfilled adults are major goals of every society. Children across the world today face complex risks and challenges including the wide availability of unhealthy foods, the prevalence of bullying and increases in drug and alcohol abuse."

Read the rest of this post on the Evidence-Based Living blog:

Evidence on child well-being across the globe

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Rising food star credits 4-H with sparking his interest in nutrition

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Rising food star, world traveler, and humanitarian Lazarus Lynch is a graduate of the Food and Finance High School (FFHS) in New York City where he studied culinary arts, financial management, and nutrition. In the summer of his freshman year of high school, Lazarus worked as an intern for Cornell University Cooperative Extension as an Assistant Nutrition and Health Educator. In his senior year of high school, he launched a three-day Hunger & Health Conference educating hundreds of students of the extremities of hunger and poverty in the world.

Lazarus credits many of his successes and opportunities to the 4-H Youth Development Program.  He attended 4-H's annual Career Explorations events in 2010 and 2012.  In 2010, he was a part of the Youth Grow and Nutrition Program, which confirmed his decision to study dietetics and nutrition in college. In 2012 he participated as a Focused Assistant, leading his group Thinking like a Scientist to their everyday workshops and activities. Lazarus will be the keynote speaker at 2013 Career Explorations.

In 2010, Lazarus was one of four New York State students to attend the World Food Prize Global Youth Institute in Des Moines, Iowa. As a 2011 World Food Prize Borlaug~Ruan intern, Lazarus spent that summer studying at the Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences in Beijing, China where he explored food security and nutrition issues and conducted advanced genetics research with Chinese researchers. Lazarus has served as a member of the National Brand Advisory Team, using his knowledge and skills to implement new marketing strategies for 4-H.

Through his two blogs and weekly contribution to his school’s newspaper, Lazarus has inspired people all across the world to eat, cook, and live healthy lives. In his near future, Lazarus wants to be an author, dietician, TV personality, and restaurateur. Lynch has been named the next big food star by one of Food Network’s hosts. He has continued in his traveling career during his freshman year of college, when he recently traveled to Rwanda to gather research on genocide prevention to create a theater production on conflict resolution. Lazarus’ goal is to one day lead the effort to eradicate global world hunger and promote healthy eating.

Lazarus attends Buffalo State College where he studies Nutrition, Music, and Theater.


Lazarus' blogs:

Lazarus in Rwanda

Lazarus E. Lynch


(1) Comment.  |   Tags: 4-H    international    nutrition    students   

Holden advises Australian Children’s Commissioner

(0) Comments  |   Tags: Australia,   CARE,   childhood,   children,   international,   Martha Holden,   RCCP,   residential care,  

holdenIn March Martha Holden (Director of the Residential Child Care Project) traveled to the Northern Territory, Australia at the invitation of Howard Bath, the Children's Commissioner of the region. The Children's Commissioner, whose core function is to ensure the well-being of vulnerable children, is working to overcome disadvantages that Indigenous children and families face and improve their quality of life. Currently there are a large number of Indigenous children placed in out-of-home care. Residential programs (mainly smaller group homes) have grown rapidly in response to demand, but with little theoretical coherence or regulation. The current departmental administrators are well aware of this issue and are seeking to chart a new course. Holden's visit was seen by administrators as an opportunity to gain information on theory, structure, monitoring, and quality care that will shape their thinking and planning.

Additionally, youth services and residential care staff and professionals attended Children and Residential Experiences (CARE) Seminars presented by Holden in Alice Springs and Darwin. The attendees were introduced to the CARE therapeutic care model and its six key principles of being:

  • developmentally-focused
  • family-involved
  • relationship-based
  • competence-centered
  • trauma-informed
  • ecologically-orientated


(0) Comments.  |   Tags: Australia    CARE    childhood    children    international    Martha Holden    RCCP    residential care   

Talks at Twelve: Cornell Cooperative Extension (CCE)

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La CCE Brigada Exploratoria en Nicaragua: Contexto, Encuentros, y Reflexiones
(The CCE Exploratory Brigade in Nicaragua: Context, Encounters, and Reflections)
January 29, 2013

Speakers: Helene Dillard, Rod Howe, Rocky Kambo, Charles (Chip) Malone, Nancy Schaff, Shawn Smith, Paul Treadwell, and Mary Wrege

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Talks at Twelve: CCE Group, Tuesday, January 29, 2013

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La CCE Brigada Exploratoria en Nicaragua. Contexto, Encuentros, y Reflexiones (The CCE Exploratory Brigade in Nicaragua. Context, Encounters, and Reflections)
CCE Group

Tuesday, January 29, 2013
12:00pm - 1:00pm
Beebe Hall, 2nd floor conference room

This talk is open to all. Lunch will be served. Metered parking is available in the Plantations lot across the road from Beebe Hall.

In September of 2012 a diverse group of extension educators from New York and Montana visited communities in Nicaragua during a nine-day exploratory trip. Enfolded in a larger cross-cultural learning initiative originating at Cornell Cooperative Extension, this initial brigade to Nicaragua was intended to build a foundation for future growth and collaboration.

During this presentation brigade members will share their experiences in Nicaragua and explore the implications of international engagement for the cooperative extension system.


Helene Dillard, Director, Cornell Cooperative Extension; Associate Dean, College of Agriculture and Life Sciences and College of Human Ecology

Rod Howe, Assistant Director for Community and Economic Vitality; Executive Director of the Community and Regional Development Institute (CaRDI), Cornell Cooperative Extension

Rocky Kambo, Director of Planning, Schuyler County

Charles (Chip) Malone, Senior Resource Educator, NY State 4-H Program Specialist, Genesee County Cooperative Extension

Nancy Schaff, Extension Associate, NY State STEM Program Specialist, 4-H Youth Development Program, Bronfenbrenner Center for Translational Research

Shawn Smith, Extension Issue Leader, Cortland County Cooperative Extension

Paul Treadwell, Distance Learning Specialist and Coordinator, Cornell Cooperative Extension Cross-cultural learning and engagement initiative

Mary Wrege, Resource Educator, Statewide Energy and Climate Change Team, Agriculture Renewable Energy Educator, Oneida County Cooperative Extension


(0) Comments.  |   Tags: 4-H    BCTR Talks at Twelve    CCE    international    Nancy Schaff   

CCE group travels to Nicaragua

(0) Comments  |   Tags: 4-H,   CCE,   international,   Nancy Schaff,   Nicaragua,  

September 7-16, 2012, Nancy Schaff (4-H State STEM Program Specialist) traveled to Nicaragua with eight Cooperative Extension colleagues for a cross-cultural exchange experience and fact-finding trip. Eight of the group were Cornell Cooperative Extension professionals (CCE Director, Distance Learning Coordinator, three 4-H Youth Development professionals, and two representing community development interests) and were joined by a community development colleague from Montana Extension. The trip kicked off with a bang by an earthquake and major volcanic eruption just before they arrived, and exceeded expectations in contacts gained and experiences. They visited Managua, Matagalpa, San Ramon, Leon, Nagarote, Masaya, and Granada. Nicaragua is a stunningly beautiful country – cameras were clicking continuously as they attempted to capture the mountains, volcanoes, people, countryside, and cities. Every day was filled with a feast of sights and experiences.

Two young men who work for Planting Hope in their NYS 4-H t-shirts

One of Schaff's goals for the trip to Nicaragua was exploring opportunities for New York 4-H’ers to connect with Nicaraguan youth – electronically and hopefully some day through exchange trips. On their first morning in Managua they were joined for breakfast by Kevin Marinacci, President of the Fabretto Children’s Foundation, and two Extension professionals from the University of Wisconsin. Fabretto has some funding from the U.S. Foreign Ag Service to start up 4-S Clubs (the equivalent to 4-H Clubs in Latin America – ‘saber’, ‘sentimientos’, ‘servicio’, ‘salud’). 4-S was operating in Nicaragua at some point in the past, but has been dormant for some time.

Other youth development contacts made included CECESMA and Planting Hope (NGOs in San Ramon) and a Peace Corps volunteer in Nagarote. At a meeting with CECESMA, similarities between their work with youth and 4-H's youth programs were strongly apparent. They have an impressive youth leadership program and are doing great work with youth conducting participatory action research. Their focus is on eliminating violence and supporting children’s rights. Planting Hope runs a library we visited outside of Matagalpa that serves as a community center. Schaff distributed Cornell Garden-Based Learning project materials in Spanish, as well as a new Lab of Ornithology curriculum for Latin America. There are plans to try to get Collegiate 4-H members involved, possibily through traveling to Nicaragua, serving as ‘virtual’ mentors for start-up 4-S clubs in Nicaragua, or helping to facilitate connections between 4-H members in New York and youth in Nicaragua.

Coffee Finca plantation

The group had an amazing time visiting farms, villages, cooperatives, and NGOs. Highlights included a three-day homestay in San Ramon; coffee farm; women’s weaving, jewelry, and papermaking cooperatives; a model small farm being piloted by a university professor; banana plantation; university botanical gardens; and much more.

(0) Comments.  |   Tags: 4-H    CCE    international    Nancy Schaff    Nicaragua