National Center for the
Dissemination of Disability Research

Webcast 6
The RAICES/Promotoras Project: Culturally Competent Research on Children's Mental Health with Latino Communities

January 10, 2007, 2:00 PM CST

About the Webcast

The presentation describes the RAICES/Promotoras Project at the University of South Florida, Louis de la Parte Florida Mental Health Institute, in Tampa. The RAICES project was funded by NIDRR to develop a training curriculum that integrates the promotora outreach model with the local school-based case management program. Promotoras are community members who use their knowledge of local resources and their neighborhood's health and social issues to promote healthy living and help community residents access needed health and social services.

The RAICES project targets at-risk limited English speaking and Spanish monolingual Latino children or those with serious emotional disturbance enrolled in grades K-5. Very often, such children and their families fail to link with available services because of language, cultural and other barriers. "RAICES," which stands for Resources, Advocacy, Integration, Collaboration, Empowerment, and Services, means "roots" in Spanish and symbolizes building healthy school and family ties upon the foundations present within the family and community.

About the Presenters

Mario Hernandez, PhD, serves as Interim Chair of the Department of Child and Family Studies, University of South Florida and is Principal Investigator for the RAICES/Promotoras Project. He is a psychologist and Professor in the Department of Child and Family Studies at the Louis de la Parte Florida Mental Health Institute. Since August 1998, Dr. Hernandez has served as Director of the Division of Training, Research, Evaluations and Demonstrations (TREaD) within the Department. Dr. Hernandez is known nationally for his expertise in a number of topics such as systems of care, cultural competence and disparities, measurement of outcomes, and theories of change. He recently edited and contributed to a special issue of the American Journal of Community Psychology that focused on a social planning approach. In addition, he has edited a book on Promoting Cultural Competence in Children's Mental Health Services.

Ms. Linda M. Callejas conducts research and evaluation in the areas of collaborative community development initiatives, educational programs, mental health disparities among minority populations, and race/ethnicity among U.S. Latinos. Most recently, Ms. Callejas developed a training curriculum for locally funded school-linked case management teams in Hillsborough County public schools that integrate the promotoras model of outreach, as part of the RAICES/Promotoras Field Initiated Project, funded by NIDRR. As an outgrowth of this project, she has also worked to support the continued development of the Familias Latinas Dejando Huellas, Tampa Bay Chapter of the Federation of Families for Children's Mental Health-the first and only such chapter in the nation developed to address the specific needs of Spanish-speaking children and families. She serves as a member of the Board of Directors for the Federation of Families for Children's Mental Health, Hillsborough County Chapter, for 2006-2007. Ms. Callejas has an M.A. in Comparative Sociology and is a doctoral candidate in Applied Anthropology.

Ms. Maggie Sanchez has over 25 years of experience working within the Health and Human Social Services arenas. She currently holds the position as Program Supervisor for the Family And School Support Team, also known as (F.A.S.S.T.). The F.A.S.S.T bilingual teams were developed as part of the RAICES/Promotoras Field Initiated Project. Ms. Sanchez has worked with state and non-profit agencies in various capacities such as job coaching for individuals with cognitive disabilities and providing on-going training and retention skills at the Community College level. She also is experienced as a Bilingual Crisis Counselor with victims of Domestic Violence, Sexual Assault and Child Abuse. For the past five years Ms. Sanchez has worked for the local Hispanic Services Council in various grant-funded positions that target Hispanic-Latino families with direct implementation of supportive services. These services are intended to increase family involvement within the areas of mental health and social service access, and to increase academic success within the Hispanic-Latino student population. Ms. Sanchez has a Bachelors Degree in Applied Behavioral Science, and is involved in numerous community and church activities.

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Presentation Materials

Go to Transcript of the webcast (Word file 164KB)

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This webcast is supported through the National Center for the Dissemination of Disability Research (NCDDR), which is funded by the National Institute on Disability and Rehabilitation Research (NIDRR) in the U.S. Department of Education, and is supported in part by ILRU. The opinions and views expressed are those of the presenters and no endorsement by the funding agency should be inferred.

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NCDDR is funded by the
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