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Supporting Military Families in Transition is topic of conference planned at Arkansas State


JONESBORO, Ark. — The Department of Social Work and the Beck PRIDE Center for Wounded Veterans, both housed within the College of Nursing and Health Professions at Arkansas State, will host the annual Northeastern Arkansas Social Work Conference on Tuesday, March 5, from 8:30 a.m. until 5 p.m. at the Convocation Center, 217 Olympic Drive.

The 2013 conference theme, “Supporting Military Families in Transition” reflects the concepts of resilience and advocacy. The strength and resilience demonstrated by military families provide inspiration and motivation for everyone. After more than a decade of war, thousands of veterans and families are now making the transition to civilian life.

“Although their homecomings are filled with eager anticipation and overwhelming excitement, the transition will present new challenges for some,” said Loretta Brewer, professor in the Department of Social Work. “These challenges provide opportunities to serve those who have sacrificed so much to serve our country. Therefore, this conference is designed to enhance understanding of the issues they may face, increase knowledge of available resources, and develop the skills needed to serve military families effectively during this time of transition.”

Topics addressed at the conference will include the impact of substance abuse on veterans and their families; Acceptance Commitment Therapy (ACT), an innovative approach to coping with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD); anger management strategies and techniques; and resource information for veterans’ services on campus and in the community.

For several years, the ASU Department of Social Work has hosted a conference in March as part of an annual celebration of Social Work Month. During this month, social workers across the country reflect on the accomplishments of the past and consider the challenges of the future. The theme of Social Work Month 2013 is “Weaving Threads of Resilience and Advocacy.”

A statement addressing this theme released by the National Association of Social Workers (NASW) says “…Those served by social workers possess many strengths that keep them fighting for a better future despite personal and systemic barriers to success. They climb toward what is possible rather than simply accepting what the current situation may be. Professional social workers help combine these client strengths with effective personal and public advocacy…”

Details, including registration information, are available at http://www.neasocialworkconference.org/

For more information, contact Brewer at 870-972-3169, or lbrewer@astate.edu