Berkshire County Kids’ Place & Violence Prevention Center, Inc.
3rd Annual Child Abuse Prevention Conference
Prevention, Intervention and Treatment Strategies for Our
Date: Thursday, May 1, 2014
Location: Country Club of Pittsfield, 639 South Street, Pittsfield, MA 01201
Registration & Continental Breakfast: 7:30am – 8:00am
Program: 8:00am -4:30pm
Community Professionals $75.00
Student $55.00
Registration fee includes:
Continental Breakfast, Lunch and Certificate of Completion
Credits/Contact/Clock Hours:
6.9 Credits for Continuing Education for Nursing, Substance Abuse Counselors, ,
LMHC, LMFT, PT, EMT, Dental Assistants and Hygienists.
6.5 SW, EMT
Certificate of Attendance provided for all other participants.
Credits are available for $20.00. Please include an additional $20 if
credits are needed.
Payments must be mailed to: Kids’ Place, 63 Wendell Ave. Pittsfield, MA
Certificates will be mailed to the participant 4-6 weeks after the conference.
Education Level: Intermediate
Conference Goal/Target Audience:
This is a full day multidisciplinary conference about the prevention of and the
response to child abuse and neglect.
Conference Goals:
 To educate professionals on the complex issues associated with child abuse
prevention, intervention and treatment strategies.
 Expand each participant’s knowledge base of the broad range of topics
related to child abuse, neglect, exploitation, violence, trauma and internet
based predators.
 Recognize the secondary traumatization and it’s effect on the professionals
that work with those exposed to trauma.
 Increase each participant’s knowledge of the various roles of a
multidisciplinary team that works together in the "best interest of the child".
Target Audience:
Professionals working within the areas of medical, legal, law enforcement, social
work, mental health, education, emergency response and community based
services and organizations.
Conference Agenda
7:30am– 8:00am: Registration & Continental Breakfast
8:00am – 8:10am: Opening Remarks, Christa Collier, MS, LSW, Director,
Berkshire County Kids’ Place
Berkshire County Kids' Place and Violence Prevention Center, is an fully accredited Children’s Advocacy
Center which provides an interdisciplinary, cooperative team approach to address the needs of children
subjected to violence as victims or as witnesses and to their non-offending family members.
Recognize that the role of the Children’s Advocacy Center (CAC) in the community is to
coordinate a response to childhood trauma.
8:10am- 8:20am: Opening Remarks, Rachael Eramo, Assistant District Attorney,
Berkshire District Attorney’s Office
The Berkshire District Attorney’s Sexual Assault Intervention Network (SAIN) Team (a partnership
among social services, prosecution, victim advocacy, law enforcement, medical and mental health)
provides an interdisciplinary, cooperative team approach to address the needs of children subjected to
violence as victims or as witnesses and to their non-offending family members and to ensure an effective
response to childhood trauma.
Recognize the system in place in the Berkshires and throughout the Commonwealth to
protect children and respond to allegations of child abuse.
8:20am – 10:00am: Child Sexual Exploitation in Massachusetts
Elizabeth Bouchard, Suffolk County Children’s Advocacy Center
This training examines lessons learned by the SEEN (Support to End Exploitation Now) Coalition
of the Children’s Advocacy Center of Suffolk County in establishing a collaborative,
multidisciplinary response to commercial sexual exploitation of children (CSEC). Case examples
are used to illustrate various forms of CSEC and risks exploited youth face, to promote
recognition of CSEC indicators and victim identification, and to highlight key community
partners that intersect CSEC cases. The training outlines the fundamental principles of SEEN’s
local response protocol and engages participants in examining the critical components of an
effective interagency response.
Identify unique needs and complex trauma of exploited and at-risk youth.
Identify essential cross-systems partners within a comprehensive response to CSEC.
Examine core elements of a successful multidisciplinary response to commercial sexual
exploitation of children.
10:00am - 10:15am: BREAK
10:15 -11:45: Keynote Speaker: John Kelly, National Center for Missing and
Exploited Children
Internet Predators & Child Pornography: Keeping Our Kids Safe In This Ever
Changing Cyber World
This presentation will give attendees updated information about current trends regarding
Cyberbullying, Human Trafficking and resources offered by The National Center for Missing &
Exploited Children (NCMEC). It will also discuss the risks of being online and how to keep
children safe. Information will be provided about victim characteristics, risky online behaviors,
and predator grooming techniques.
 Identify the signs of illegal activity versus policy violations when talking about the
 Recognize how and when to report information to the CyberTipline.
 Summarize victim characteristics, risky online behaviors, and predator grooming
 List the behavioral characteristics of Internet sexual predators, their grooming techniques
and recognize how to respond appropriately.
Break Out Workshops Please choose one
A. Protective Services and the Multidisciplinary Team Response: A Guide for
Mandated Reporters
Roann Vecchia, Investigator & Forensic Interview, Massachusetts
Department of Children & Families / Kristen Westerman, SAIN Team
Coordinator, Berkshire District Attorney’s Office
Prompt and proper intervention when there is a suspicion of child abuse often times
relies on the information provided by the professionals working with children. This
workshop will provide an overview of the role and responsibilities of a mandated reporter
and identify tips for effective communication when gathering the minimal facts needed to
file. In addition, we will discuss the role of a multidisciplinary team in child abuse
investigations and identify how these professionals work together to intervene,
investigate and treat children who are victims of abuse.
Recognize the role and responsibilities of a mandated reporter in the response of
suspected child abuse.
Describe tips for effective communication with children when gathering the minimal
facts required to file.
Identify the various roles of a multidisciplinary team that works together in the "best
interest of the child".
B. Stress Reduction for the Family: Managing the Load While Caring for a Child
with Developmental Disabilities
Todd Castine, M.S., BCBA, Hillcrest Educational Centers
This presentation will describe an overview of the difficulties associated with raising a child
having developmental disabilities and the stress that can occur within a family unit. Associated
risk factors, and the strategies used to problem solve and seek assistance for the family will be
provided along with different stress reduction strategies that can be incorporated into daily life
for care providers and siblings.
Recognize and summarize the difficulties that increase for stress when families are
caring for a child with developmental disabilities.
Describe different strategies to seek assistance for managing difficult behavior, stress,
and the work load associated with caring for a child with a disability.
C. Trauma Informed Practices in Our Community,
Barbara Cece, LICSW, Massachusetts Department of Children and Families
This program will explore trauma informed practices. A discussion will take part with
participants on the strategies agencies in the area may use to address the unique needs of
traumatized children and families.
 Define trauma informed practices.
 Describe the trauma informed services and practices available in the community.
 Identify several methods for providing a trauma informed response to children and
2:20-2:35pm: BREAK
2:35-pm– 4:20pm: Talking Back to Caregiver Stress: How to Increase Our
Resilience In the Face of Compassion Fatigue and Vicarious Trauma
Mark Kenyon, LMFT
This program will present the symptoms and dynamics of Compassion Fatigue and Vicarious
Trauma, and their impact on Behavioral Health Care Professionals. We will present the
dynamics of Resilience-Building and the importance of building self-care skills and strategies to
enhance resilience and overcome emotional distress we face in our profession.
 Recognize the symptoms of Compassion Fatigue and Vicarious Trauma.
 Identify three features of the Resilient Mindset.
 Describe the steps that can be taken to improve self-care and minimize risk of
developing compassion fatigue and vicarious trauma.
4:20-4:30 pm: Closing Remarks
Barbara Cece, LICSW, Massachusetts Department of Children & Families
Recognize the prevalence of abuse in Berkshire County and the response of the
Department of Children and Families to address this issue.
Complete Conference Evaluations, Sign Out and Submit Registration
Form for CE Credit Request
Program Faculty
Christa Collier: Christa Collier has been the Director of Berkshire County Kids’ Place since
2011. She has a Masters Degree in Communications and Information Management from Bay
Path College and is a Licensed Social Worker with the State of Massachusetts. Prior to her
leadership at Kids’ Place Ms. Collier worked in a community based organization in Pittsfield,
Massachusetts, the Gladys Allen Brigham Community Center in various management positions
for 14 years.
Rachael Eramo:
Rachael Eramo has been employed by the Berkshire District Attorney’s Office as an Assistant
District Attorney for more than eleven years. In that capacity, she has prosecuted a wide variety
of cases in District, Juvenile, and Superior Court, including drug possession and distribution,
robbery, domestic violence, sexual assault, and child abuse and neglect. For the past six years,
she has been a member of a team in the District Attorney’s Office assigned to investigate and
prosecute cases involving the physical and sexual abuse and exploitation of elderly victims as
well as victims with mental and physical disabilities. In September 2010, she was assigned as
Chief of the Child Abuse Unit, which is responsible for the investigation and prosecution of
reported cases of physical and sexual abuse of children in Berkshire County. Mrs. Eramo is a
graduate of Smith College in Nothampton and Western New England College School of Law in
Elizabeth Bouchard:
Beth Bouchard is the Support to End Exploitation Now (SEEN) Coalition Case Coordinator at
the Children’s Advocacy Center of Suffolk County in Boston, MA. Beth earned her BA from
Boston College, studying history and international studies, focusing on social movements and
feminism. With a professional background in advocacy and victim services, Beth has experience
with survivors of sexual abuse, domestic violence, and human trafficking, as well as
undocumented and refugee populations. Her previous professional roles have included Sexual
Assault Crisis Prevention/Intervention Specialist at the YWCA of Silicon Valley, Emergency
Guest Advocate at DOVE, Inc., and Caseworker at the Unaccompanied Refugee Minors Program
of Lutheran Social Services. As SEEN’s Case Coordinator, Beth has coordinated a
Multidisciplinary Response for over 275 at-risk and commercially sexually exploited children.
Working daily with the Boston Police Department Human Trafficking Unit, the Office of the
Suffolk County District Attorney, victim service providers, the MA Department of Children and
Families, court and juvenile justice providers, and community partners, Beth facilitates vital
communication, navigates state and local systems, provides local outreach, and ensures that
each child referred receives a coordinated response.
John Kelly:
John Kelly is an Education Specialist with the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children
since 2011 and travels throughout the Northeast US providing FREE presentations to schools
and communities. John started his career as a police officer in Saratoga Springs in 1989 and
became a DARE officer in 2000. He was a member of the NYS DCJS Training team which trains
DARE Officers throughout the northeast US. John went on to become an investigator and
during the last five years of his career was assigned to the Saratoga Springs High School as a
SRO. In addition to working for NCMEC, John works part time at the Hariett M. West, Child
Advocacy Center in Saratoga County serving as the Law Enforcement Coord. He is FIBP trained
and responsible for coordinating forensic interviews for CPS and Law Enforcement officials in
Saratoga County.
RoAnn Vecchia:
Currently employed by the Massachusetts Department of Children and Families, RoAnn has
spent the past 24 years as child protective investigator in the Pittsfield Area Office. She has
completed the American Professional Society on the Abuse of Children (APSAC) Forensic
Interviewing Clinic as well as the National Children’s Advocacy Center (NCAC) Advanced
Interviewing training in Huntsville, AL. Aside from conducting the interviews for the
Department of Children and Families’ caretaker cases, she provides courtesy interviews for the
local police departments and the District Attorney’s office on the non-caretaker cases. RoAnn
also organizes and participates in regular state-wide forensic interviewer meetings for the
purposes of peer review, training and support. RoAnn has been involved in the development
and presentation of local and statewide trainings on Child Abuse and Neglect, Mandated
Reporting and the Benefits of the Multidisciplinary Team Response to Child Abuse. RoAnn also
presents at various trainings for the Massachusetts Child Welfare Institute on such topics as
Interviewing and Screening Children for Sexual Abuse as well as the Department’s Mandatory
Hotline and Investigating training. Most recently RoAnn has been asked to participate in the
National Children's Alliance Accreditation Task Force that will be revising the Multidisciplinary
Team, Case Review and Forensic Interview Standards for Children Advocacy Centers.
Kristen Westerman
Kristen Westerman has been employed by the Berkshire District Attorney’s Office as the
coordinator for the Sexual Assault Intervention Network (SAIN) Team for the past nine years.
Beyond her role of SAIN Coordinator, Ms. Westerman has been involved in the development
and presentation of local trainings on Child Abuse and Neglect, Mandated Reporting and the
Benefits of the Multidisciplinary Team Response to Child Abuse. Before her time in the
Berkshires, she was a Senior Prevention Specialist at the Child Abuse Prevention Program in
New York City. At CAPP, she provided Child Safety Workshops to over 10,000 children a year
utilizing life sized puppets to teach third and fourth grade students how to recognize, resist and
report child sexual and physical abuse. She is a graduate of the Bachelor’s program for Forensic
Psychology from John Jay College of Criminal Justice.
Todd Castine:
Todd Castine is a native of the Northern New York with over 25 years of experience working
with children and adults having a variety of handicapping conditions.
Todd is the Director of Autism Services for Hillcrest Educational Centers and a Board Certified
Behavior Analyst.
He has extensive experiences working in environments specializing in the assessment and
treatment of individuals diagnosed on the autism spectrum and or individuals having intense
learning and behavioral difficulties. Mr. Castine also has a background in special education,
supervising and or training graduate students in Master's Level training programs in special
education and school psychology.
He speaks at regional and national conferences covering a variety of topics including the
assessment and treatment of severe self-injury, staff motivation and engagement, characteristics
of Autism Spectrum Disorders, specialized teaching procedures for the developmentally disabled
and difficulties associated with a variety of other special populations.
Barbara Cece:
Barbara Cece is an Area Program Manager at the Department of Children and Families in the
Pittsfield Area Office. She has a private practice in psychotherapy in Williamstown and was a
clinician and manager at the Northern Berkshire Mental Health Association (now The Brien
Center) from 1973-1993 and Behavioral Health Team Leader for the Community Health Plan
from 1993-2000. She has an MSW from Simmons College and is an LICSW.
Mark Kenyon
Mark currently works for Berkshire HealthWorks, the Employee Assistance Program of
Berkshire Health Systems, and also works as a Behavioral Health Coach in the Berkshire
Wellness Program at BHS. He is licensed as a Marriage & Family Therapist and as an Alcohol &
Drug Counselor, and also has earned a Certified Employee Assistance Professional status. Mark
is also qualified as a Substance Abuse Professional under the US Department of Transportation.
He earned his master’s degree in Counseling and Psychological Services from Springfield College
in 1980 and CAGS there in 1981, with a specialization in Marriage and Family Therapy. He has
been a mental health professional for over 30 years.
Accreditation/Approval Information:
Application has been made to Family Development Associates for certification of
contact hours for licensed marriage and family therapists.
This program meets the requirements for nursing contact hours as specified by the
Massachusetts Board of Registration in Nursing-244 CMR 5.04.
Application for social work continuing education credits has been submitted.
Application has been made for EMT continuing education credits and has been submitted to the
Office of Emergency Medical Services.
This program meets the requirements for contact hours for dental hygienists and dental
assistants as specified by the Massachusetts Board of Registration in Dentistey-234 CMR 5.00.
Berkshire AHEC is an Approved Education Provider of the National Association of Alcoholism
and Drug Abuse Counselors (NAADAC) to provide contact hours for certified alcohol and drug
Berkshire AHEC is an NBCC –Approved Continuing Education Provider (ACEP). Berkshire
AHEC may award NBCC-approved clock hours for programs that meet NBCC requirements. The
ACEP maintains responsibility for the content of the event.
Certificates & Completion Requirements: To receive verification of successful completion
of the credit hours and contact hours, participants are expected to sign-in and out, attend the
entire program, and complete an evaluation. Certificates will be mailed to participants after the
conference. Participants will not receive a certificate of completion until payment has been
received. Participants are expected to attend 100% of the program. Social workers attending less
than 80% will not receive any credit.
Overnight Accommodations: A block of rooms have been reserved for April 30, 2014-May
1, 2014 at the Hampton Inn and Suites, Lenox, MA. The special room rate of $119 will be
available until April 15th or until the group block is sold-out, whichever comes first. Call them at
413-499-1111 and ask for the Kids’ Place group block.