$50,000 Scaife Grant Awarded

Wednesday, Jun 09, 2021
$50,000 Scaife Grant Awarded

Dr. Heather Howard, assistant professor in the Sandler School of Social Work, recently received a $50,000 grant from the Scaife Family Foundation to support her Peer Recovery Support program, titled “An Empowerment Model for the Mother-Infant Dyad Impacted by Trauma”.  The empowerment model supports mothers in reaching their full potential and breaking the intergenerational cycle of substance use. The model addresses the significant barriers that mothers with substance use face and promotes the health and wellbeing of mothers and their children.

Rebel Recovery, a community recovery organization located in Palm Beach County, hired a specialized peer support specialist to support mothers and infants 0-3. Due to the positive outcomes of having specialized child welfare/dependency court peer supports integrated into Early Childhood Court, Rebel Recovery will duplicate these specialized peer support services in Family Drug Court.

Often due to stigma, childcare responsibilities, and lack of medical coverage, women do not have access to gender-specific treatment. A peer support specialist is available to all women despite coverage and provides hope, emotional support, sober support, advocacy, and instrumental support such as obtaining housing.

Dr. Howard and the director of Rebel Recovery, Nancy McConnell, MSW, an alumni of FAU Sandler School of Social Work, are developing a specialized curriculum for Certified Peer Support Specialists who work in Child Welfare in order to expand the program throughout the state.