2019 Bridging the Gap Conference Workshop Descriptions

2019 Bridging the Gap: A Texas Mentoring Conference Logo

Attendees will enjoy two days of professional development workshops from industry experts from around the country. Here’s an in-depth look into the conference sessions.

Monday, September 23 | 2:10 pm – 3:20 pm

The Science of Play & Productivity – Austin
Stephanie Scheller, Founder Grow and Disrupt
Description: 1. What is EQ and why does it matter to you? 2. How do you improve your emotional intelligence to increase your productivity?

The 10 Simple Lessons of Fundraising – Bowie
Jim Eskin, Founder, Eskin Fundraising Team
Description: Fundraising is not complicated, but many people are intimidated by it, and some are downright terrified of asking for money. In this informal workshop, fundraising trainer/consultant Jim Eskin will guide you through the top 10 common-sense rules of fundraising and give you the valuable tools you need to help advance the mission of your organization. With this expertise, you will be able to take immediate steps that lead to rich relationships and gifts from donors — and putting the fun in FUNdraising.

Parenting Engagement: Raising Capable Kids – Seguin
Margaret Judson, Director of Family Engagement, UnicitySA
Dosely Antongiorgi, Child & Family Therapist & Regional Director, STCH Ministries
Description: We will present an overview of the 40 Developmental Assets and how these materials can be used in schools, churches and community organizations to equip parents with some basic tools.

Advancing Equity – Houston
Courtney Wai, Director, Learning & Development, City Year
Description: In this workshop, participants will learn the basic concepts of equity and how racial equity applies to their respective roles.

Cyber Safety: Don’t Let Your Digital Footprint Follow You Through Life – Goyens
Heath Hardwick, Special Agent
Description: The presentation will define what child pornography is, as well as the state and federal statutes regarding the sentencing for violations of each law.  SA Hardwick will also give examples of the current problematic social media apps children are dealing with today.  Real-life cases investigated by HSI will be detailed to warn the attendees what tactics predators have used to identify, locate, and meet with children.  SA Hardwick will also provide information regarding Predator Awareness and red flags and early warnings that someone may be attempting to coerce or entice a child.  

Monday, September 23 | 3:30 pm – 4:40 pm

Building Relationships to Prevent & Heal Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) – Austin
Lauren Geraghty, Director of Strategic Impact Initiative, Communities in Schools San Antonio
Description: It is estimated that at least 15% of San Antonio youth have an ACE score of 4 or more. Therefore, it is important for all who support and work with youth to know how toxic stress affects their ability to be physically, behaviorally, and academically successful. This information is critical to ensuring our relationships are designed to prevent further ACEs and provide opportunities for healing and resilience building. Explicitly connecting the science of toxic stress to caring and competent relationships ensures we can more effectively serve our diverse communities.

Eleven Building Blocks for Successful Board Members – Bowie
Kathy MacNaughton, Executive Director, Masters Leadership Program
Description: Unleashing the superpowers of our nonprofit board members to be all they can be (and all that we WANT them to be!)

Advocacy & Mentoring Intermediary Growth & Support – Seguin
Abbie Evans, Senior Director of Government Relations, MENTOR
Joellen Spacek, Senior Director of the Affiliate Network, MENTOR
Description: Abbie and Joellen will present jointly about the need for increased advocacy related to youth mentoring and youth development; talk about the expansion of MENTOR’s Affiliate network and the role Affiliates can play in supporting local programs; and, the important role local/regional partners play in making the national mentoring movement more effective, diverse, and responsive to the needs of young people.

Helping Everyone Understand the Value of the “Gift of Goodbye” – Houston
Michael Karcher, Ed.D., Ph.D., D., Associate Dean for Research,
College of Education & Human Development, The University of Texas at San Antonio
Description: In mentoring, as with many things,  it is important to begin with the end in mind. I recommend everyone prepare to give the gift of goodbye by starting to prepare your children for the end of the year, practicing goodbyes, and not promising that you will just see them in the fall. I say this because many of the kids who have experienced incomplete goodbyes in the past and who are kids who least deserve another unexplained loss in their lives–are also likely to be one of that 40-50 % of kids whose matches don’t resume next year. Such kids may unexpectedly move over summer or change schools (or whose mentors will change their minds). Most studies suggest one in two school-based matches that think they will continue with their mentor actually will not, leaving them to wonder why, what happened, what did I do. It is easiest to just avoid saying goodbye and promise to see them next year. That usually results in collateral damage half never seeing their mentors again, and left to wonder, did she really like me? Why did they not come back? Such questions occur even when children move schools, which should convince them they did nothing wrong and the end of the relationship is not their fault. This workshop will provide media, text, and song-based tools that can be used to help mentors be best prepared to give a truly amazing gift of goodbye. Even if both return the next year,  most resumed relationships will be stronger for having done a full closure and having not left any loose ends.  This workshop will prepare staff to help mentors and mentees plan for a memorable goodbye celebration.

Someone to Walk With Faculty-Student Mentoring in College – Goyens
Jessica Cooper, Dean of Academic Success, HealthScience, St. Philip’s College
Shelley Kozel, Assistant Professor, Physical Therapist Assistant Program, St. Philip’s College
Description: This workshop will describe how to start a mentoring program in community college. 

Tuesday, September 24 | 1:45 pm – 2:55 pm

Part 1 (of 2): Setting the Stage for Effective Outreach to the LGBTQ Community – Austin
Dr. Christian Rummel, Principal Consultant, Altria Pilot Project
Hillary Bardwell, Director, Foundation Grants, Big Brothers Big Sisters of America
Michael O’Teter, Chief Program Officer, Big Brothers Big Sisters of Lone Star
Description: During this first (of 2) session, the presenters will discuss ways that BBBS agencies can best evaluate their current readiness to effectively reach out to and serve the LGBTQ community.  This will include a brief sensitivity exercise and an overview of terminology.

Agile Digital Strategies – Bowie
Magaly Chocano, Chief Executive Officer, SWEB Development
Description: A hands-on learning experience where Magaly will present attendees with a case study and walk them through how to create an agile strategic plan for their nonprofit.

Self-Care – Seguin
Sarah Tabbutt, Director of Living Center, YMCA of Greater San Antonio
Stephanie Chavira, Director of Marketing & PR, YMCA of Greater San Antonio
Description: Taking the time to care for yourself is the number one way to care for others. Through spirit, mind, and body we must take time to care for ourselves 1st. With an emphasis on nutrition, physical activity, problem-solving, stress management and making healthier choices most of the time we can make an impact on our health. Topics Covered: Breathing Techniques, Gasoline Gauge Activity, Problem Solving Techniques, Nutrition Preparation Tips, and Everyday Physical Activity Tips.

Using Data to Strengthen Collective Impact Initiatives with Youth – Houston
Jessica Mitchell, Ph.D.,Associate Director, Research & Evaluation, Big Brothers Big Sisters of America
Description: Learn how to use BBBS’ newest evaluations tools and interpret findings to promote stronger programming, outcomes, and marketing. 

Corporate Engagement – Goyens
Adam Vasallo, Vice President of Development & Marketing, Big Brothers Big Sisters of America
Description: Ideas and insights on corporate engagement and development.

Tuesday, September 24 | 3:05 pm – 4:15 pm

Part 2 (of 2): Setting the Stage for Effective Outreach to the LGBTQ Community – Austin
Dr. Christian Rummel, Principal Consultant, Altria Pilot Project
Hillary Bardwell, Director, Foundation Grants, Big Brothers Big Sisters of America
Michael O’Teter, Chief Program Officer, Big Brothers Big Sisters of Lone Star
Description: During this second (of 2) session, the presenters will highlight the recently released LGBTQ Supplement to the Elements of Effective Practice, providing insights from BBBSA’s LGBTQ pilot project. The session will also outline steps that BBBS Lone Star has taken, as a BBBSA LGBTQ pilot site, to improve their internal LGBTQ cultural competencies and to effectively make inroads with the LGBTQ community.

Safety in Mentoring – Bowie
Denise Barkhurst, President & CEO, Big Brothers Big Sisters of South Texas
Clare McCoy, Vice President of Outcomes, Big Brothers Big Sisters of South Texas
Description: A training for mentoring staff on preventing sexual abuse by equipping staff,  parents, children and volunteers with the information, tools and resources to avoid victimization or re-victimization. 

How Adverse Childhood Experiences Transformed My Mentoring Approach – Seguin
Richard Davidson, Chief Operations Officer, Family Service Association of San Antonio Inc.
Description: We will explore Adverse Childhood Experiences and how approaches by mentors with knowledge of ACEs can provide youth with the strongest forms of resiliency despite their childhood trauma.

Volunteer Recruitment: Connecting Passion to Purpose – Houston
Ilsa Garcia, Volunteer Recruitment Specialist, Communities in Schools San Antonio
Christina Martinez, Vice President of External Relations, Big Brothers Big Sisters of South Texas
Description: This training is aimed at helping participants understand best practices around volunteer recruitment. Participants will be able to work through possible recruitment events and/or campaigns. 

Storytelling That Moves People – Goyens
Carlos Maestas, Chief Storysmith, Key Ideas
Description: We all understand the power storytelling has to move people to action. What’s difficult is communicating your personal story– or that of your organization– in a way that not only rings true, but connects with your audience on a deeper level. Sometimes you’re cursed with too much knowledge, unsure of how to relay your story to those who don’t know what you know. Other times, you don’t believe your story is worth sharing. During the storytelling that moves people presentation Carlos and Jennifer Maestas will take you through the characteristics of authentic storytelling and how to apply them so your stories build trust with your audience. Our team of story smiths will also walk you through ways you can lead and motivate your team through storytelling, and the value of sharing your personal story. Carlos and Jennifer Maestas will share lessons from their own experiences with a dose of comic relief. By the end of the presentation, you will be better equipped to share the organization’s story and feel inspired to connect to something bigger than yourself.