Doin’ The Work: Frontline Stories of Social Change
Empowering Women, Policy Advocacy, Graceful Revolution, Coaching - Melissa Bird, PhD, MSW

Empowering Women, Policy Advocacy, Graceful Revolution, Coaching - Melissa Bird, PhD, MSW

June 4, 2018

Episode 6
Host: Shimon Cohen, LCSW
Guest: Melissa (Missy) Bird, PhD, MSW

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In this episode, I talk with Dr. Melissa Bird – “Missy” – of Bird Girl Industries, where Missy empowers women to engage in advocacy. We talk about challenging injustice and how people’s fear of “doing it perfectly” holds them back. Missy shares a story of using advocacy to empower a client, explains the “Graceful Revolution,” and tells the story of when she wrote a bill to emancipate homeless youth, organized a coalition, and lobbied to get the bill passed – which it did! – when she was a graduate student. Missy encourages everyone to “find their jam” and get involved. I hope you enjoy the conversation.

Missy’s blog www.birdgirlindustries.com
Twitter https://twitter.com/birdgirl1001
Facebook https://www.facebook.com/birdgirl1001/
Instagram https://www.instagram.com/birdgirl1001/
Patreon https://www.patreon.com/birdgirl1001

Drug Policy and Decriminalization, Racially Biased Policing, Coalition Building - Kassandra Frederique, MSW

Drug Policy and Decriminalization, Racially Biased Policing, Coalition Building - Kassandra Frederique, MSW

May 7, 2018

Episode 5
Host: Shimon Cohen, LCSW
Guest: Kassandra Frederique, MSW

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In this episode, I talk with Kassandra Frederique, who is the New York State Director of the Drug Policy Alliance. We talk about Kassandra’s work to decriminalize drugs, challenge racially biased policing, and build coalitions. Kassandra emphasizes how to meet people where they are at on these issues and remain accountable to those most affected. I hope you enjoy the conversation.

http://www.drugpolicy.org/kassandra-frederique

Incarceration, Reentry, Prevention, Criminal Justice Reform - Dante Barber

Incarceration, Reentry, Prevention, Criminal Justice Reform - Dante Barber

April 16, 2018

Episode 4
Host: Shimon Cohen, LCSW
Guest: Dante Barber

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In this episode, I talk with Dante Barber, who is a Senior Youth Leader at Friends of Island Academy, an organization in New York City focused on supporting youth who are incarcerated and after they are released from jail. We talk about Dante’s prevention work of speaking to youth about his own experience in the criminal justice system, prisoner reentry, and the campaign to close Rikers Island. Dante shares about how he got into this work and his “journey of change.” I hope you enjoy the conversation.

Friends of Island Academy: http://www.friendsny.org/

Close Rikers Campaign: http://www.closerikers.org/

Research, Rural Social Work, Dementia, Policy Advocacy - Nicole Ruggiano, PhD, MSW

Research, Rural Social Work, Dementia, Policy Advocacy - Nicole Ruggiano, PhD, MSW

April 2, 2018

Episode 3
Host: Shimon Cohen, LCSW
Guest: Nicole Ruggiano, PhD, MSW

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In this episode, I talk with Dr. Nicole Ruggiano, who is an Associate Professor in the School of Social Work at the University of Alabama. We talk about Nicole’s research on dementia and how it led to working with the community of Tuskegee, where there is a history of unethical and racist practices by researchers. Nicole shares about the challenges facing rural communities and the importance of researchers, academics, and practitioners in supporting self-determination among individuals, families, and communities. Nicole urges listeners to get involved with policy advocacy and provides examples of how to do so. I hope you enjoy the conversation.

 Nicole’s email: nruggiano@ua.edu

Consulting, Reproductive Justice, Racial Equity - Nicole Clark, LMSW

Consulting, Reproductive Justice, Racial Equity - Nicole Clark, LMSW

March 19, 2018

Episode 2
Host: Shimon Cohen, LCSW
Guest: Nicole Clark, LMSW

www.dointhework.com
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In this episode, I talk with Nicole Clark, of Nicole Clark Consulting. Nicole is a licensed social worker in Brooklyn, New York. We talk about Nicole’s consulting work – program design, program evaluation, strategic planning, and trainings – with an emphasis on how she keeps social justice, racial equity, and reproductive justice as her focus. Nicole shares how she decided to study social work and how she started her own business. She provides a brief overview of the Reproductive Justice framework. I hope you enjoy the conversation.

Nicole’s website: http://nicoleclarkconsulting.com/

Mental Health, Trauma, Self-Care, Advocacy - Jonathan Foiles, LCSW

Mental Health, Trauma, Self-Care, Advocacy - Jonathan Foiles, LCSW

March 5, 2018

Episode 1
Host: Shimon Cohen, LCSW
Guest: Jonathan Foiles, LCSW

www.dointhework.com
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In this episode, I talk with Jonathan Foiles, who is a clinical social worker in Chicago, Illinois. We talk about Jonathan’s clinical work with clients who have experienced trauma, cross-cultural practice, whiteness, and self-disclosure. Jonathan shares how he got into this work. We discuss self-care, which for Jonathan includes writing about social policy issues and their impact on clients, using clients’ stories and his experience as a way to show the reality of how policy decisions negatively impact people’s lives. I hope you enjoy the conversation.

Link to Jonathan's article: http://beltmag.com/fixing-chicago-mental-health-system/

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