Posts Posts by: "Katie Gerten"
Becca - Youth Dynamics Fosters Resiliency in Montana Youth

Over the past 39 years, Youth Dynamics has touched the lives of thousands of children and families across the state. The mental and behavioral health support services we provide help to build strong families and foster resiliency in our state’s s most vulnerable youth…(Read More)

strengths - YDI Values - What Do They Really Mean?

We are traveling the state to talk to our teams about what it means to embody Youth Dynamics values. Core Values: Empowerment Partnerships and CollaborationIndividual and Family StrengthsIndividual Responsibility and Self-DeterminationTeam Decision-Making and Individualized CareTransparency and AccountabilityTrauma Sensitive CultureActive Care and Treatment This week, we asked Missoula & Helena Family Development Coordinator, Victoria…(Read More)

burnout 2 - Don’t Forget to Take Time for Yourself

Most of us have heard the saying, “You can’t pour from an empty cup.” While this statement resonates with many of those in human services, the idea of applying this philosophy in our own lives is a challenge. According to the Social Service Review, the turnover rate for those in human services can hit…(Read More)

for website - YDI Mentors- Transforming the Lives of Montana Kids

Family Support Assistant, Jo Gaxiola, has been with YDI for over three years and has worked as a mentor at both our Havre and Missoula Community Office.  Jo has a powerful story of his experience mentoring two boys in Havre. Outside of YDI, Jo works in law…(Read More)

sarah square - Faces of Mental Health- “I highly value community."

This is the final segment of our series, Faces of Mental Health, which gives people an intimate look inside of children’s services. To see our past stories, check us out on Facebook at Youth Dynamics of Montana or People of Youth Dynamics every Tuesday and Thursday night at 5:30pm. You can also catch…(Read More)

Analee in Grass - Faces of Mental Health- "She looked broken."

This is the third segment in our series, Faces of Mental Health, which gives people an intimate look inside of children’s services. To see our latest story, check us out on Facebook at Youth Dynamics of Montana or People of Youth Dynamics every Tuesday and Thursday night at 5:30pm. You can also catch…(Read More)

First test - Faces of Mental Health- "It's Hard to Ask for Help"

This is the first segment in our series, Faces of Mental Health, which gives people an intimate look inside of children’s services. To see our latest story, check us out on Facebook at Youth Dynamics of Montana or People of Youth Dynamics every Tuesday and Thursday night at 5:30pm. You can also catch…(Read More)

resized - Countertransference is not a Flesh-Eating Disease – by Lawrence Rubin, PhD, ABPP Among my varied clinical and clinically-related roles, I supervise master’s level counseling interns who are training in a variety of settings, from alternative schools to psychiatric hospitals. In our group supervision classes, we discuss a range of theoretical and applied concepts related to clinical practice. Frequently…(Read More)

resized therapist - The Skype Psychologist

What video-chat therapy sessions offer that in-person visits don’t. The Atlantic – Joseph Burgo As I prepare for my first session of the day, I settle down at my computer, log on to my Skype account, and review the completed questionnaire emailed to me by a prospective client. The hour ahead will be…(Read More)

resized mental health - 7 Myths About Child Mental Health

Psychiatric disorders are not a result of bad parenting — or poor willpower Child Mind Institute – by Harold S. Koplewicz, MD It is easy to empathize with suffering we can see: a child who has lost her hair as a result of chemotherapy, for instance. The suffering of a child with psychiatric issues is…(Read More)

small for blog - 10 Reasons to Consider Fostering Teens

So here are some reasons to take in foster teens. 1. You may become the only family they have. Can you imagine aging out of the foster system with no one. Not having any family to guide you into early adulthood or if you do have family they may not be very productive or even…(Read More)

Dennis Picture e1547584684714 1192x1000 - Youth Dynamics Appoints Dennis Sulser, Ed.D, as New Interim CEO

The Youth Dynamics’ Board of Directors is pleased to announce that after careful consideration, Dennis Sulser, Ed.D, has been appointed the new interim CEO of Youth Dynamics.  Dennis officially took over leadership of the organization on January 7, 2019. Dennis has a Doctorate of Education and brings thirty years of leadership experience to Youth…(Read More)

Dad Beard - Foster Families Needed

Valley Journal – by Mary Auld- 9/12/2018 In many ways, Joel McClanahan of Lolo is a typical proud parent.  “We have an amazing kid,” he said as he introduced himself.  While this affection is characteristic of many families, the situation by which McClanahan’s family came together is fairly unique. McClanahan is a foster…(Read More)

resized sad boy - 3,921 reasons to donate to foster care

There are 3,921 children in the Montana foster care system that need your help today. Many of these foster children entered care with few clothes or possessions, often traveling from placement to placement with no more than a trash bag full of their belongings.  On average, a foster child will move a minimum of…(Read More)

smaller - Donate to Foster Care

The number of children in Montana foster care has skyrocketed, with the number of kids nearly doubling in the last five years. Sadly, many of these kids enter care with few clothes or possessions, often traveling from placement to placement with no more than a trash bag full of their belongings.  On average, foster children…(Read More)

smaller - 3,921 reasons to talk about foster care in Montana

There are currently 3,921 children in the Montana foster care system.  Sadly, there are only 396 licensed foster homes in the state.  Over the last 10 years in Montana the number of kids in foster care has doubled, shocking a system that was unprepared to adequately care for such a large number of children…(Read More)

Adoption Boy resized - For teens in foster care, adoption is a lifeline

Washington Post – By Susan Punnett & Erica Rosenberg “I’ll take anyone,” said Davion Only, a 15-year-old boy who had been in foster care his whole life, before a Florida congregation in October. “Old or young, dad or mom, black, white, purple. I don’t care.” The story went viral, and Davion’s…(Read More)

 “I knew I would be okay” This video is the first in a new series, Faces of Youth Dynamics, that examines the personal chronicles of the people who make up Youth Dynamics.  Each person has a unique story of resilience, adventure, or persistence which has led to a career helping others. A woman tells…(Read More)

Child cropped - Need for foster homes grows exponentially in Montana

Over the past 10 years the need for foster homes has continued to increase, and now is at a record high.  In September of 2017 there were nearly 4,000 children in foster care.  The amount of kids in care has nearly doubled since 2015, when the number hovered around 2,200. The number of…(Read More)

resized - Youth Dynamics seeks local homes

The Whitehall Ledger – By Jack H. Smith With a steady rise in the number of Montana youth in foster care, the need for foster homes has grown exponentially. Youth Dynamics, a Montana based non-profit children’s agency, is hoping to find more foster homes in the Whitehall area. Lily Hawks, Family Development and Community…(Read More)

sad girl - Montana foster kids face challenges as they age out

By GAIL SCHONTZLER , Bozeman Daily Chronicle BOZEMAN (AP) — Her name is Heaven, but much of her childhood sounds like hell. Heaven Reel was placed in foster care at age 16, after state social workers found evidence of neglect or abuse in her home. “We were always hungry,” Heaven said. She recalls grocery money…(Read More)

blog resize - Meth’s impact on Montana’s foster care system

Reprint of story by  KTVH HELENA – Brenda and Jason Crawford are one of Montana’s many adoptive and foster parents; in 2014 baby Kailer entered their life.   Kailer was born with significant amounts of heroin in his body. “When Kailer was born, within a few hours he started withdrawing from the drugs within his system…(Read More)

Boy with a dog resized - Therapy and Service Animals for Children with Special Needs

Service and therapy animals are proven to make a positive difference Very Well Family – May 22, 2018 Service and therapy animals have become increasingly popular for children with special needs, and for good reason. Research shows that animals can make a huge difference in kids’ physical independence and emotional well-being. What’s more, service…(Read More)

resized - Child Discipline Techniques for Foster or Adopted Children

Discipline Techniques for Children Who May Have Been Abused or Neglected Very Well Family – May 29, 2018 Foster parents are not allowed to use corporal punishment with foster children. Adoptive parents are also wise to try other discipline techniques and to avoid corporal punishment due to many children’s past experiences with abuse and neglect…(Read More)

Josh Shipp was a foster kid, class clown, a rebel without a clue, and a trouble maker. He was written off, kicked out, and every adult’s worst nightmare. Until one caring adult changed everything. Josh’s story is powerful and demonstrates the difference that one person can make.  Anyone can make a difference, whether…(Read More)

Resized for Facebook - Teen Suicide: Learning to Recognize the Warning Signs

Stanford Children’s Health – June 11, 2018 Many teen suicides can be prevented if warning signs are detected and appropriate intervention is conducted. The reasons No two teenagers are alike, but there are some common reasons they consider suicide. Many teens who attempt suicide do so during an acute crisis in reaction to some conflict…(Read More)

worry jar 3 - The Worry Jar

The Worry Jar


Laura Radniecki – June 5, 2018 The Worry Jar is a technique for people, especially children, who suffer from worry and anxiety. It helps kids identify, name and release their worries. The idea behind the Worry Jar is simple: 1. Write your worries down on little slips of paper and put them into a jar or…(Read More)

anxiety child for blog - How to Help Kids with Social Anxiety

Psycom – May 22, 2018 by Katie Hurley, LCSW Social anxiety disorder (social phobia) isn’t simply a fear of making or interacting with friends. It’s actually characterized by an intense fear of social situations in which the child might be judged or scrutinized by others. Children with social anxiety disorder experience intense feelings of…(Read More)

Talk with Foster Child for Facebook - How to Explain a Move to a Child in Foster Care

Live About- April 4, 2017 by Carrie Craft There are many aspects of fostering that are extremely difficult to emotionally handle as a foster parent. Helping a child in foster care adjust to a new placement, explaining to a foster child that you are not an adoptive resource, and transitioning a child back with birth…(Read More)

resized little girl - Reporter’s Notebook: A Foster Child’s Story

CBS- April 6, 2018 (CBS4) – If you are like I was five years ago, you may have a vague idea of what foster care is. That means you probably grew up surrounded by people who loved you. You may have had parents, siblings, grandparents and even a crazy aunt or uncle. Bottom line is…(Read More)