September 25, 2014

An Introduction to Medication Assisted Treatment and the Hub and Spoke System

Posted in Residential, Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services tagged , , , , , at 7:08 am by Lund

What is medication assisted treatment ?

Medication assisted treatment (MAT)is the use of medications, in combination with counseling and behavioral therapies, to provide a whole-patient approach to the treatment of substance use disorders. Research shows that when treating substance use disorders, a combination of medication and behavioral therapies is most successful. Medication assisted treatment is clinically driven with a focus on individualized patient care.” SAMSHA, www.dpt.samsha.gov. MAT is most effective in those who have suffered from continual relapses.

What medications are commonly used in MAT?

The medications most commonly used by clients at Lund’s residential treatment facility are methadone and buprenorphine. According to the Vermont Department of Health, the majority of MAT patients receive buprenorphine prescribed by a physician in a medical office setting. methadone, unlike buprenorphine, is a highly regulated addiction treatment drug and is only provided in specialty clinics.

Methadone is a drug for people dependent on opiates, who have often battled addiction for a long time and are taking high doses every day to avoid withdrawal. Methadone can be very dangerous drug if used outside of medical monitoring and federal regulations are very strict to ensure safety when using methadone. More people die each year from illegal use of methadone than any other drug. Methadone is dispensed daily at a clinic and those pursuing this course of treatment must visit the Chittenden Clinic daily to receive their dose.

Buprenorphine is an alternative course of treatment for opiate addiction, appropriate for those who have enough maturity, discipline and stability to participate in an office based program. Buprenorphine is a partial agonist which makes it a safer medication with less chance of overdose.

What is the Hub and Spoke method of substance abuse treatment?

Prescription drug abuse is the nation’s fastest-growing drug problem. Vermont is ranked the 34th worst of all the states in the non-medical use of pain relievers and for the first time ever, treatment admissions for opiate addiction surpassed that of alcohol addiction. In addition, drug diversion continues to be a problem for many reasons. In response to this problem, The Agency of Human Services (AHS) in collaboration with community providers proposed a coordinated, systemic response to the complex issues of opiate and other addictions in Vermont, now referred to the Hub and Spoke model, or “Care Alliance for Opioid Addiction.”

Although this initiative initially focused on creating capacity in the system for adequate medication assisted treatment for the increasing numbers of individuals with opiate addictions, it also created a framework for integrating treatment services for other substance abuse issues and co-occurring mental health disorders into a medical home model. In addition, this treatment approach is proposed to help reduce recidivism in people who have been incarcerated and enhance outcomes for families where addiction is an identified problem for child welfare.

Very large waiting lists for methadone indicated insufficient treatment capacity and fewer providers have been willing to prescribe buprenorphine for new patients. With more Vermonters seeking treatment for opiate addiction every year, this difficulty of access to MAT is a problem. The Hub and Spoke system reaches more people and provides more MAT options for patients. It also offers increased supports directly to physicians in medical office settings, assisting them in effectively managing and treating patients.

This helpful diagram from the Vermont Department of Health illustrates the Hub and Spoke system

This helpful diagram from the Vermont Department of Health illustrates the Hub and Spoke system

What is a Hub?

A Hub is defined by AHS as “a specialty treatment center responsible for coordinating the care of individuals with complex addictions and co-occurring substance abuse and mental health conditions across the health and substance abuse treatment systems of care.” www.healthvermont.gov/adap/treatment

A Hub is designed to do the following:

♦ Provide comprehensive assessments and treatment protocols.

♦ Provide methadone treatment and supports.

♦ For clinically complex clients, initiate buprenorphine treatment and provide care for initial stabilization period.

♦ Coordinate referral to ongoing care.

♦ Provide specialty addictions consultation and support to ongoing care.

♦ Provide ongoing coordination of care for clinically complex clients.

What is a Spoke?

A Spoke is defined by AHS as “the ongoing care system comprised of a prescribing physician and collaborating health and addictions professionals who monitor adherence to treatment, coordinate access to recovery supports, and provide counseling,

contingency management, and case management services” www.healthvermont.gov/adap/treatment

Spokes can be:

♦ Blueprint advanced practice medical homes

♦ Outpatient substance abuse treatment providers

♦ Primary care providers

♦ Federally qualified health centers

♦ Independent psychiatrists

What does this look like here in Chittenden County?

The HowardCenter’s Chittenden Center Clinic is the Hub for Northwestern Vermont including Chittenden, Franklin, Addison and Grand Isle Counties.  The Chittenden Clinic has two locations – one at the University Medical Center and the other on San Remo Drive in South Burlington. The Spokes consist of 200 prescribing physicians in a variety of medical and behavioral health outpatient settings. Lund recently became a Spoke.

How did Lund become a Spoke?

In order to become a Spoke, Lund needed to add a Medical Director to our existing substance abuse treatment program. Dr. William Grass is the current Medical Director. His responsibilities include tending to the general and mental health needs of clients, acting as a consultant to the nursing team and to the clinicians and monitoring and evaluating urine drug test results. A crucial part of his work is evaluating and managing medication assisted treatment for our residential and community clients Dr. Grass is at Lund one day a week and also runs his own private psychiatry practice where he has practiced as a spoke physician for several years. Dr. Grass sees the benefits of MAT in Lund’s treatment program but as one part of a wider approach , “Life skills and parenting education are also an important part of treatment. MAT expands access to this sort of treatment in a population of people where opioid use disorder may be more prevalent than in the general population. Through the Hub and Spoke system, we’re able to expand access in a specific population of people. Healthy families mean a healthy future and that is important.

Lund’s residential and community treatment leadership team began conversations with Vermont’s Blueprint staff, who oversee Spoke implementation for Chittenden County, early in 2014. As a formal Spoke provider, Lund now receives funding from Vermont Health Access to deliver the comprehensive health services to clients receiving Spoke services, which optimizes treatment and health outcomes.

Having Dr. Grass on staff expands the medical team. Lund’s nurse, Jessilyn Dolan, is glad to have him on board, “Our clients’ medical needs have increased and become more complex over the last few years and it is very useful to have him to consult with. It is also really helpful to have a prescribing physician on staff so that if there is a time crunch with a new resident coming in who needs medication or a medical emergency, we have him to call on.”

Is MAT for everyone?

Not all people who have substance abuse disorders use medication assisted treatment. Having Dr. Grass on staff allows for him to consult with treatment teams and assess each client’s treatment plan and help decide whether MAT might be beneficial. As of the writing of this article 42% of clients at our residential treatment center are participating in MAT.

Medication is just one part of Lund’s treatment approach and is not appropriate for everyone.  Lund offers a comprehensive approach that includes clinical and psychiatric services, health care, education and case management to pregnant and parenting young women, their children, and other key family members. Our therapists, teachers and caseworkers not only assist women in their recovery from substance abuse or mental health issues, they help them identify their strengths and maximize their potential by offering parenting education, as well as life skills and job training.

September 19, 2014

Family Dinner at LECP

Posted in 50 Joy Drive, Events, Lund Early Childhood Program (LECP) tagged , , , , , , at 9:46 am by Lund

What better way to celebrate the start of fall than with a delicious community dinner outside complete with musical entertainment and lots of friends to play with?  This was scene on Wednesday night at Lund’s Early Childhood Education Program at the Hoehl Family Building.  Kirtani Mathauer, teacher in the young toddler room, led the event inspired by community cooking classes and dinners she had helped with at other early childhood programs.  She was looking for a way for families to connect and spend some time together getting to know each other.  Parents drop off their children at different times and so their paths may never cross despite their children spending all day together.   This event was a chance to meet and eat together.

Research shows that eating together as a family is good for the brain, health and spirit of all family members.  Yum!

Research shows that eating together as a family is good for the brain, health and spirit of all family members. Yum!

The sun even made an appearance after a day of clouds and it was still warm enough to eat, play and dance outside.  The menu consisted of pasta, meatballs, eggplant parm, salad, garlic bread, and dessert provided by LECP and also dishes brought by families.  There were even enough leftovers to enjoy for lunch the next day.  After dinner LECP teacher, Collin and his friend Kyle played music.  There’s nothing like toddlers dancing with their friends to a John Prine cover in the waning light of an early fall evening to make you feel pretty good about the state of the world.  The play structure built last Spring by volunteers from dealer.com served as great front row seating for the show and also provided the usual jumping and climbing entertainment for the children.

“I’m proud of the turnout,” said Kirtani, “one parent told me it was the best community dinner he’d been to at an education program because it was so relaxed and gave everyone the time to eat, have fun and talk.”

Healthy eating is a key priority at LECP as many of the children come from families struggling with food insecurity or limited access to nutritious food.  The children eat meals and snacks family style and learn how to behave considerately at the table while they enjoy a wide variety of dishes cooked on site in the school kitchen.  Lund is planning expand the food program to run parent-child cooking workshops.  This will be helped by a recent generous grant  from Seventh Generation that will provide the needed equipment to set the kitchen up efficiently and safely for the children.

Kirtani plans to organize another family dinner next year and attract even more families to share a meal together.  Thank you to all the teachers who worked hard to make this event come together and to all the families who attended and brought food to share.

September 12, 2014

David Letterman, Benedict Arnold and the Ice Bucket Challenge

Posted in Awards, Donor Spotlight, Events, Grants tagged , , , , , at 11:14 am by Lund

“I believe that philanthropy is a good thing.  It’s hard to go wrong when you’re acting out of a place of generosity. We shouldn’t fret so much about philanthropy. We shouldn’t let the joy of giving be muddied by the intellectual pursuit of the best, most effective and perfect giving,” said Stuart Comstock-Gay, President and CEO of the Vermont Community Foundation at their Annual Meeting on Wednesday September 10, at the Basin Harbor Club.   His speech began, as so many things do these days, with the ice bucket challenge and he quotes from a Maclean’s article on it, “The marketing gimmick is very clever, it’s short, immediately understandable and like the most clever forms of slacktivism, it’s easy to do, entertaining to watch and narcisstically self promoting.  It’s a great way to raise money but a horrible reason to donate.”  But then spent the rest of this speech advising the assembled crowd of grantees, supporters, donors, board members and friends not to be caught up in criticism and cynicism around popular philanthropy.  Stuart warned us all not to let our David Letterman-ness (thinking constant critique and close mindnessness is the height of intelligent cool) get in the way of our ice-bucketness.  He’s right.   $100 million raised for ALS reseach is a good thing, however is happened.

It was obvious at this meeting that Vermont is a unique and special place, not just because it took place at the spot where Benedict Arnold launched the USS Philadelphia in 1776 and then went on to trounce the British at the Battle of Valcour Island, but also because of the people present.  Underneath the tent on a warm early fall afternoon were some of the state’s most influential philanthropists, business people and representatives of non-profits doing important work.   These people are the true power of community.  “I see collaboration, passion, creative problem solving by many philanthropists. All of them working on complicated issues, all of them working on new ideas and visions, all of them with belief even though it’s hard and sometimes the issues are so complex you could cry,” described Stuart as he looked out over the crowd.

As well as this inspiring speech from the CEO, the meeting also included financial overviews, a humorous report from the audit committee (yes, that’s correct, humorous, I did say these people were special) and the presentation of the Community Impact Award to the Addison County Parent Child Center and their long time supporters Michael and Cindy Seligmann.  This award honors the relationship between a donor and the organization that they support.  The Addison County Parent Child Center provides support, education and resources to young families.   Lund is a Parent Child Center for Chittenden County.  It was a privilege to watch a video about the great work that this organization does for parents and children in Addison County and to witness the incredible support given to them by the Seligmanns.

Stuart’s last assertion from the podium was that we all need to believe, “Believe. Believe in people, in ideas, in Vermont. Believe in yourselves, believe in each other.  Allow a little wonderment to creep into your lives. Don’t be so quick to shoot down someone’s idea. Snarkiness is not something to be proud of.  It’s certainly ok to have questions but don’t let that get in the way of other people’s enthusiasm.  It doesn’t mean you have to believe everything but it does mean that you cannot disbelieve everything . Don’t rain on the belief parade of others.”

It was easy to believe in Vermont when you look at the important, effective and widespread work of the Vermont Community Foundation.  We thank them for their support of Lund in so many ways over the years and for their leadership in our state.

In all my enthusiasm about belief and cutting back on cynicism, I only managed to take a photo of the spot where Benedict Arnold might have stood to admire the USS Philadelphia.  You'll just have imagine the large crowd of Vermont philanthropists and leaders behind the camera.

In all my enthusiasm about belief and cutting back on cynicism, I only managed to take a photo of the spot where Benedict Arnold might have stood to admire the USS Philadelphia. You’ll just have imagine the large crowd of Vermont philanthropists and leaders behind the camera.

 

September 5, 2014

United Way Building Block Awards – Celebrating the Powerful Connection Between Individual and Community

Posted in Awards, Board of Trustees Spotlight, Employees, Events, United Way, Volunteer Spotlight tagged , , , , , , , , , , at 11:31 am by Lund

The large ballroom at the Sheraton Hotel was full yesterday morning as volunteers, community members, representatives of the local non-profits and supporters of the United Way gathered to celebrate the Building Block Awards and officially launch the United Way’s 2014 campaign.   The Building Block Awards are given to volunteers at local non-profits who have made a difference in the United Way’s target areas of income, education and health.  Lund celebrated volunteers who have made a huge difference in our organization – Ann Klinkenberg and Paulette Thabault and Peter Gunther and their family.  Ann volunteers in the New Horizons Educational Program tutoring students one on one and providing assistance to the teachers in the classroom.   Since the students are all at different stages in their education, having Ann’s support to provide individual assistance is absolutely key in the students’ success.  Paulette and her husband Peter and their children have done many different things at Lund from helping at the bike ride, representing Lund at events and panels, hosting fundraising events and recruiting their children to play Santa and his elves at the very last minute and saving the Glen Road Holiday Party!  Paulette has also been a board member since 2007 and chairs our strategic planning committee.

Director of Development Beth Knox with Paulette Thabault and Peter Gunther

Director of Development Beth Knox with Paulette Thabault and Peter Gunther

Learning Together Coordinator Tammy Santamore and NHEP teacher Kathy Rossman with Ann Klinkenberg (center)

Learning Together Coordinator Tammy Santamore and NHEP teacher Kathy Rossman with Ann Klinkenberg (center)

United Way Volunteer Coordinator Amy Carmola referred to the volunteers in the room as “treasures” and said, “Volunteering represents the powerful connection between individual and community. When we volunteer we go beyond taking care of our families and ourselves.  When we volunteer we give our time and our attention, which is such an important part of ourselves, we give that to someone else, to something else.”  Our volunteers make a active difference in the lives of our children and families and we are so grateful for their time, attention and commitment.

The Sisters of Mercy were honored for their work in Vermont with the 2014 Advocate Award.  United Way Director Martha Maksym referred to them as “walking sermons” and congratulated them on the breadth and scope of their work in the state.  Sister Lindora Cabral accepted the award on behalf of the sisters, “Advocacy is such an important part of who we are.  We advocate for those who are poor. For us service and advocacy go hand in hand.”  The Sisters of Mercy founded Mater Christi School, Trinity College, the Women’s Small Business Program, Mercy Connections and other important service intiatives.  Lund is proud to partner them in their work to support women and children in need.

The breakfast was also the kick off of the United Way’s 2014 community campaign to raise $3,850,000 to allow the United way to support the work of it’s 29 member agencies as they tackle the most pressing societal problems and ensure that the most vulnerable members of our community have what they need to be successful.  This year’s campaign is chaired by Robert DiPalma, an attorney at Paul Frank and Collins.    You can watch this year’s campaign video here.

Thank you to the United Way of Chittenden County for allowing us this opportunity to celebrate volunteers both here at Lund and in the wider community.

September 2, 2014

Angel in Adoption – Judge Susan Fowler

Posted in Adoption, Awards tagged , , , , , at 7:39 am by Lund

Lund is so pleased to congratulate Judge Susan Fowler on winning an Angel in Adoption Award from the Congressional Coalition on Adoption Institute.  The award is given to an individual, family or organization who has made an exceptional difference in the lives of children looking for families.  Judge Fowler has overseen the finalization of over 1000 adoptions in the state and has worked with Lund for many years.  “We are very lucky to have a judge that is so passionate about adoption and the importance of belonging and family. Judge Fowler makes every adoption unique and special,” says Wanda Audette, Director of Adoption at Lund.   Judge Fowler’s most special duty is to pound the gavel and sign the paperwork and in so doing, create forever families.

“Judge Fowler is a huge part of our adoption community,” says Julia Conner, Private Adoption Coordinator at Lund. “She treats birth parents with dignity, respect, fairness, and understanding. She helps our adoptive families commemorate an incredibly important moment in their lives and approaches adoption finalizations with humor, music and joy; putting families at ease and creating a lasting and memorable experience.”

While a joyful situation, the finalization can also be nerve wracking for families and as an adoptive parent herself as well as a judge with such extensive experience, Judge Fowler does everything she can to help ease the situation.  Lund’s Case Finalization Manager, Karisa Thompson, has seen this first hand during the eight years she has worked with Judge Fowler.  “When adoptive families arrive at court, they are generally nervous, excited, and relieved all at the same time.  Judge Fowler plays jazz music so when families enter the courtroom, they are reminded that they are there to celebrate their family and the music puts them at ease.   She is a ray of sunshine at the end of a long, difficult process for our foster children and adoptive families.  She is personable, happy, and takes each hearing in stride based on how the child is reacting.  I have seen her stop talking and sit back with a smile on her face as a toddler spun and danced in circles in the court room and if a child was fearful or screaming, she just talks faster so the family can move on with the celebration.  Judge Fowler makes every adoption a special celebration.”

Judge Susan Fowler, Vermont's 2014 Angel In Adoption.

Judge Susan Fowler, Vermont’s 2014 Angel In Adoption – “A ray of sunshine”

Judge Fowler’s top priority is always to ensure permanency for children as soon as possible. “She is extremely flexible and consistently works in the best interest of children.  She maintains open communication with Lund and has scheduled extra hearings for children to be adopted before Christmas and even arranged for a last minute hearing so a child could be adopted the day before her eighteenth birthday.  Judge Fowler does not hesitate to call and ask a question about an adoption packet and is always willing to help advocate on behalf of Lund when confronted with issues regarding other probate courts,” says Karisa.

Judge Fowler will be recognized at the Angel in Adoption Gala on Wednesday, September 17 in Washington, D.C.

For more information about adoption in Vermont and Judge Fowler’s award, please watch the following news coverage from WCAX.

http://www.wcax.com/category/166239/video-landing-page?clipId=10517653&autostart=true

http://www.wcax.com/story/26377101/meet-a-real-life-angel-in-adoption

August 28, 2014

Philanthropy Starting Early

Posted in 50 Joy Drive, Board of Trustees Spotlight, Donor Spotlight tagged , , , at 9:27 am by Lund

When Lisa Carter turned 11, she asked her friends and family to make a donation to Lund instead of buying her birthday presents.  She raised $96.20 to support Lund’s education, treatment, adoption and family support services.  Lisa came with her parents to the Hoehl Family Building at the end of the summer to present her donation and take a tour so that she could see the work that her gift would support.  Lisa’s father Matt has been on the Board of Lund in his current term since 2010 and was also a member prior to that.

We are so grateful to our many donors, supporters and friends who make gifts to Lund throughout the year but it is especially meaningful when the gifts come from young people who recognize the need of other children and families.  Lisa’s parents report that this was all her own idea.  Lisa said, ” It just makes me feel good to do it.” Thank you Lisa for thinking of others on your birthday and for making a generous gift to Lund.

Executive Director of Lund, Barbara Rachelson, with Lisa.

Executive Director of Lund, Barbara Rachelson, with Lisa.

Every single dollar we receive helps families to break cycles of poverty, abuse and addiction.  There are many ways that community members can support Lund:

1.  Make a donation  CLICK HERE
2. Volunteer.  VIEW CURRENT OPENINGS
3.  Tell your Lund story.  Share with friends, family and colleagues how Lund has helped you or someone you know and how the organization has made a difference in the community.

August 12, 2014

Lund Ride for Children Bike Winners!

Posted in 50 Joy Drive, Donor Spotlight, Events tagged , , , at 2:55 pm by Lund

The Lund Ride for Children on Sunday June 1, kicked off a beautiful summer for biking. Two of our riders will now be enjoying new bikes courtesy of North Star Sports, a long time friend of the Ride for Children.  Barb Hughes won a children’s bike in the raffle and plans to give it to her two year old granddaughter.  She hopes that she will practice her technique riding it around the basement during the winter months and be ready next Spring to hit the bike path.

Barb with J.P. of North Star Sports with the sweetest little purple bike.

Barb with J.P. of North Star Sports with the sweetest little purple bike.

Lund board member and dedicated supporter of the Lund Ride for Children, Katie Halsey, won her bike by rasing the most money through the Ride for Children for the women, children and families of Lund.  Katie raised $3455 herself which helped her team, the Bisby Bikers, to a total of $4755.    Katie plans to spend some time riding by the ocean this summer.

J.P. and Katie with Katie's new bike

J.P. and Katie with Katie’s new bike

 

North Star Sports have been involved in the Lund Ride for Children since it began six years ago.  Not only have they donated bikes but they run an onsite bike clinic on the morning of the ride and drive the all important SAG van that makes sure our riders stay safe on the course.  We are so grateful to J.P. and Pat and all our friends at North Star Sports for helping make our Ride for Children a success.

JP hard at work checking bikes during the 2013 Lund Ride for Children

JP hard at work checking bikes during the 2013 Lund Ride for Children

Thank you to these riders and to everyone who participated in the ride, donated or volunteered.  You raised $62,466 to provide hope, opportunity and family for women and children in Vermont.

August 8, 2014

“Creating an Intentional Community of Health”- United Way brings people together to talk about substance abuse

Posted in Events, Residential, Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services, United Way tagged , , , , at 11:15 am by Lund

We know that opiate addiction is a problem in Vermont that now affects every single part of the community.  The state has seen a nearly 800% increase in opiate use in the last 14 years and a concurrent increase in crime and rates of incarceration.  Governor Shumlin dedicated his entire State of the State address this spring to the omnipresence of this issue, “It doesn’t affect just one class of people, it affects rich and poor,” Shumlin says. “It knows no party lines, it knows no economic lines.”   Bringing this issue to light in such a prominent way has forced people in the state to confront the problem and begin to talk about solutions.

This week the United Way of Chittenden County held a community forum to discuss the problem of opiate addiction and to allow for concerned community members to offer their ideas for solutions.  The event attracted over 120 people from all different backgrounds – medical professionals, law enforcement, social workers, academics, school administrators, parents, community activists, politicians.  It was an interactive meeting with plenty of time allowed for discussion and questions.  There were people in the room for whose lives had never been touched by drug use and people in the room in recovery.  There were people whose political and social backgrounds were so widely different that no other situation would have brought them together.  The common thread was concern for people in Vermont battling this illness.  There was an air of understanding and willingness in the room.  One lady advised the crowd to look around.  “We’ve got the right people in this room,” she said, “open your hearts and see the potential.”

United Way on Opiates

When the crowd broke out into groups for smaller discussions many people could be heard sharing how addiction had touched their lives, “It’s a sad, sad diseases,” said one medical professional, “and we mustn’t forget that it’s a disease.  This is not a choice people are making.  They get stuck in a hole and they can’t get out.”  In a later session of break out groups, the room was posed with questions to discuss – What is the state of treatment facilities in Vermont, what does prevention really look like, how can we provide the tools people need when they are in recovery so that they don’t slip back into the same lifestyle, how can we create an intentional culture of health instead of an unintentional culture of addiction?

Courtney Farrell, Associate Director of Residential and Community Treatment Services at Lund, who attended the meeting found the open discussion time to be most useful as it allowed people to connect the problem of addiction in the state with other issues.  “We had good conversations about how as a community we can be more proactive in working effectively together to support child protection as it relates to addiction in families, rather than just see it as one agency’s problem to fix.”  Collaboration and the interconnectedness of social issues were two themes that underlined the entire forum.  Brian Southworth from Lund, also an Associate Director of Residential and COmmunity Treatment Services, noted, “Participants were energized by the prospect of finding more effective ways to improve communication and more collaboratively address opiate addiction. There were a number of commitments made to facilitate forums in Burlington, and adjoining towns, for the purpose of expanding the conversation and planning.”

Attendees were encouraged to leave the discussion with an idea for one thing that they themselves could do to help address the problem.  One way that you can help is to support Lund which is the only treatment facility for substance abuse and mental health issues in Vermont where women can receive treatment while staying with their child.   Our residential treatment center serves 26 pregnant or parenting women and their children as they work towards an independent, successful life in recovery.  We also provide integrated, wraparound family support and education services to support the whole family in breaking cycles of poverty, abuse and addiction.  Lund works closely with other community organizations to ensure that we have a collaborative approach and a comprehensive understanding of the complex nature of addiction.   To learn more about Lund, click here.   To make a donation, click here

“Lund has shown me a life I didn’t even know existed. Lund has shown me how much more of a person I can be, and what it really means to live, not just to stay alive. Lund has given my daughter, Sienna,  the chance to break the multi- generational cycle of addiction, by helping her to have a mom who doesn’t use drugs.  My mom, my grandmother and my great grandmother are all addicts.  Who knows how far back it goes”  Tina, 26.

 

August 4, 2014

World Breastfeeding Week – Supporting Nursing Moms at Lund

Posted in Employees, Residential tagged , , , , , , at 9:02 am by Lund

August 1st to August 7th is World Breastfeeding Week coordinated by the World Alliance for Breastfeeding Action with the goal to protect, promote and support breastfeeding.   Anthony Lake, Executive Director of UNICEF says in support of this event, “Giving all children the best start in life begins with breastfeeding – one of the simplest, smartest and cost effective ways we have of supporting healthy children, stronger families and sustainable growth.”

Lund is working hard to support the moms in our programs who choose to breastfeed by making sure that they have access to the resources, education and equipment that they need in order to be successful at breastfeeding. Jessilyn Dolan, nurse at Lund’s Glen Road Residential Treatment Center, says, “It has been one of my goals to increase breastfeeding here and to change the culture and face of breastfeeding. I have been doing this by talking about it more, putting up posters, having a weekly support groups and trying to make it the norm. We definitely have more people trying breastfeeding now.”

photo3

One of the posters outside Jessilyn’s office at Glen Road.

Information outlining the many physical benefits for baby of breastfeeding

Information outlining the many physical benefits for baby of breastfeeding

The group that Jessilyn refers to is run by a peer counselor from WIC (a state program that helps young families to eat well and stay healthy) who comes to Glen Road on Monday evenings to provide support, answer questions and provide information about breastfeeding. The group is consistently attended by a number of clients who are active participants. This group is not the only way that women who are breastfeeding or interested in breastfeeding have support at Lund.   Through a grant prepared by a pediatric resident of Lund’s visiting pediatrician, Dr. Molly, Lund was able to acquire five high quality multi user breastpumps. Jessilyn also made an arrangement with WIC to get pumps for moms who want them and secured a freezer dedicated solely to breastmilk. Residential counselors attended a series of six trainings last fall about breastfeeding featuring presentations from local lactation consultants and medical professionals. Each new residential counselor is required to watch a video about breast feeding before they begin working with the moms so that they are more familiar and can be supportive.   Jessilyn openly refers to breastfeeding in her parenting classes without trying to influence moms, “When they bottle feed I tell them to feed one way and then switch because that’s what babies do when breastfeeding. You want both arms to have that reach and both eyes to have that gaze, not just one sided all the time. I encourage all the norms of breastfeeding without discouraging bottle feeding.”   She meets with all the moms and makes sure that they feel informed about all the options and watches a video with them about breastfeeding that is aimed specifically at young moms and teenagers. Jessilyn is striving hard to make breastfeeding an accepted and normal part of the parenting culture at Lund.

 

The green ball on this lanyard is the same size as a newborn's stomach on the first day of life.  Lund staff use this as a teaching tool when talking about colostrum and the benefits of breastfeeding.

The green ball on this lanyard is the same size as a newborn’s stomach on the first day of life. Lund staff use this as a teaching tool when talking about colostrum and the benefits of breastfeeding.

Lund’s residential treatment clients often have complex medical needs due to the effects of substance use and mental health disorders. Jessilyn works with Lund’s Medical Director and the client’s outside medical providers to ensure that moms can access medications that are effective and also allow them to continue to breastfeed, “When the psychiatrist wants to prescribe something, I work with the pediatrician as well to weigh the pros and cons because there is some of the medication that gets though the milk but the benefits can be so much more for the mom then it’s worth that little bit getting through breast milk. We talk to the pediatrician and get their OK on it. You just have to connect everyone around it.”

Collaboration and communication, both amongst the clients’ treatment teams and within the community are key in supporting breastfeeding moms in treatment at Lund. Jessilyn feels that there has been a definite change in the culture around breastfeeding at Lund in the last 18months, “We’ve networked with the community to get more support in here and to increase the breastfeeding culture so it’s more comfortable and is becoming normal for people here.”

Happy World Breastfeeding Week to all our friends and supporters!

August 1, 2014

Lund welcomes new board members

Posted in Board of Trustees Spotlight, Volunteer Spotlight tagged , , , , , , at 1:42 pm by Lund

Lund is very lucky to have a hardworking, dedicated, supportive  Board of Trustees who are entirely committed to helping the women, children and families of Vermont.   We could not do the work that we do without them.  As of the beginning of our new fiscal year in July, we are pleased to welcome five new board members.  We also have a new Board President, Sara Byers.   Former President Lisa Pizzagalli will remain on the board.   Thank you to all our board members for their hard work.  Please read about our new members below.

Lucy_Abair

Lucy Abair

Lucy Abair

Lucy had worked with Lund for many years in her role at the Department for Children and Families where she worked for over 40 years. She is pleased to now have the opportunity to become directly involved by joining the board. Having lived in Burlington all her life, Lucy sees Lund as “contributing enormously to the fabric of the town”. Lucy is also on the board of the Champlain Senior Center. In her free time she enjoys walking, gardening, tai chi, boating on the lake and spending time with her four grandchildren.

Heidi_Kelley

Heidi Kelley

Heidi Kelley

As a former beneficiary of Lund’s services, Heidi was looking for an opportunity to give back to the organization. “Over the years, I have often wondered how I could ever repay Lund’s generosity. As a board member I will have the opportunity to say thank you for all that you have done for me and my family,” she says. Heidi lives in Milton and is an active volunteer for the Recreation Department and the library while also studying full time for a legal studies degree.

Susan_Nostrand

Susan Nostrand

Susan Nostrand

Susan has been a Lund volunteer since 2011, helping with Lund’s Ride for Children, serving on the Development Committee, and working with the Kids-A-Part program.  Susan has an extensive background in education and has taught in schools in Marin County, California and Cambridge, Massachusetts.  Susan also helps women reach their educational goals as a member of Champlain College’s Single Parents Program Advisory Committee which helps students obtain scholarships to attend school full time. Susan is an active volunteer at her children’s school and is currently a Chittenden South Supervisory Union School Board member. Susan is excited to learn more about the many ways Lund strengthens families throughout Vermont. Susan lives in Charlotte with her husband, Ben, and two children, Elizabeth and Sam.

Chris_Curtis

Chris Curtis

Chris Curtis

Chris has worked with Lund in his role as an attorney at Vermont Legal Aid where his practice primarily relates to housing, public benefits and family law cases brought on behalf of low income Vermonters. Chris is extremely active in his community serving local organizations in a variety of volunteer roles. He also currently serves as Co-Chair of the Governor’s Council on Pathways from Poverty.

Stephanie_Reiskin

Stephanie Reiskin

Stephanie Miller Reiskin

Although new to Lund, Stephanie is a long time supporter of organizations that help women and children, such as the Single Parents Program at Champlain College, and “believes that all children deserve a good start in life”. Stephanie is experienced in all aspects of running a small business and looks forward to applying her skills to help Lund. She works at her family’s real estate business, R.E.M. Development, in Williston and currently sits on the boards of the Burlington Business Association and the Lake Champlain Regional Chamber of Commerce. Stephanie lives in Warren.

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