Meet Deborah White, Director of In-Home Services
August 25, 2014
Deborah White, who initially began working at Epiphany Center as a case worker providing parents with the resources to keep their families together, is now the Director of In-Home Services.
What are you working on at Epiphany Center? In-Home Services helps parents at risk of losing their children to the child welfare system. We utilize an evidence-based parent education curriculum, SafeCare®, which aids us in instructing parents to increase positive interactions with their children and to maintain child safety and wellbeing. SafeCare® is comprised of four modules and generally takes 6-8 months to complete. For some families, we also provide case management. Our collaborators in this work are Family Support Services of the Bay Area and Asian Perinatal Advocates; and, recently, three Public Health Nurses have been added to our full staff of SafeCare® providers.
How did you come to work at Epiphany Center? I came to the agency in 2008 as a Differential Response Liaison with the primary responsibility of linking struggling parents with the resources needed to help keep their families together.
How do you initially notice clients are beginning to change as a result of their time at Epiphany Center? They open up more. Parents become more receptive to a broader spectrum of possibilities for a better family life, which presents the opportunity to talk about other valuable services available to them. Initially, clients can be fairly defensive, so it’s wonderful to be able to begin building rapport. Services that might not have been an option at enrollment become a consideration and might lead to referral to one of our other programs such as our Family Treatment Center.
Specifically, within the last few weeks, what “little victories” have you witnessed clients celebrating? We have been providing services to a very dedicated father who has been extremely busy searching for a job, looking for housing, caring for his kids, and juggling court dates. Yet, he always shows up on time for his SafeCare® appointments and is progressing beautifully in the program. He just got the keys to an apartment and a job with the Department of Public Works. That’s tremendously exciting!
Of the five major Vincentian values of Respect, Compassionate Service, Simplicity, Advocacy for the Poor, and Inventiveness to Infinity - Creativity, which one is your favorite to practice and why? While many of our families have common challenges, the variation of dynamics within the challenges is amazing; and, each family is unique. It is “Inventiveness to Infinity – Creativity” that insures our ability to meet the needs of our families. That’s my favorite—Inventiveness to Infinity – Creativity.