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SAMHSA awards $62.4 million in grants to combat child trauma

logo for the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration in the United States

The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) is distributing $62.4 million in grant funding to provide and increase access to effective treatment and services systems in communities throughout the nation for children, adolescents, and their families who experience traumatic events. The White House is bolstering these awards with $800,000 in American Rescue Plan (ARP) support.

In 2000, Congress established the National Child Traumatic Stress Initiative (NCTSI) as part of the Children’s Health Act. Through this initiative, a collaborative network of experts was created to further the development and dissemination of evidence-based clinical interventions for systems that serve children, adolescents, and families.

SAMHSA’s NCTSI raises awareness about the impact of . . . Learn More.

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Career Opportunity: Family & Children’s Service Nashville Seeks Data Manager

Family & Children’s Service Nashville is looking for a Data Manager to assist with the implementation and maintenance of databases, data collection systems, and strategies that optimize the efficiency and quality of data. In coordination with the Director of Data Analytics, this position helps maintain the data infrastructure to support operations, including reporting and quality assurance. This position will also support a partner nonprofit agency with database administration and reporting.

Responsibilities Include:

  • Create, refine, and generate reports on data and outcomes.
  • Identify and interpret trends or patterns in complex data sets.
  • Provide technical support for end users for databases and data collection systems.
  • Assist in quality assurance reporting by filtering and cleaning data to locate and correct problems.
  • Troubleshoot systems to ensure error-free functionality and end-user satisfaction by conducting research on specific issues related to individual queries or systemic issues.
  • Click here to read full job posting

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Epilepsy Foundation Uses iCarol ReferralQ to Distribute Uber Vouchers

person holding a smartphone with the uber rideshare app open

Today we’re excited to bring you the first in a series of stories on how iCarol customers are using our ReferralQ and Provider Portal products to help people in their communities!

Our first story is about the Epilepsy Foundation<. With a network of partners throughout the United States, the Epilepsy Foundation is leading the fight to overcome the challenges of living with epilepsy. Among its many programs is a 24/7 Helpline of AIRS Certified Resource Specialists.

With support from their partners at SK Life Science, the Epilepsy Foundation is using iCarol to help people living with the epilepsies address a big challenge — access to transportation.

Read Their Story

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SAMHSA Awards 988 Dialing Code Administration Grant to Vibrant Emotional Health

On Wednesday, June 16, the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) announced that Vibrant Emotional Health will be the administrators of the new 988 dialing code for the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline in the United States. Vibrant, in partnership with SAMHSA, has administered the Lifeline since its creation in 2005. Click here to read SAMHSA’s full statement.

The process of creating the three-digit national number to reach the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline has been ongoing for several years. Click here For more information on 988.

The team at iCarol extends our congratulations to Vibrant Emotional Health for being designated as administrators of the 988 dialing code. Through our years working with Vibrant Emotional Health and the many Lifeline Network Centers answering calls to 1-800-273-TALK, we have seen firsthand the passion and professionalism these teams bring to their work addressing the critical public health issues of suicide and mental health. We believe that 988 will improve accessibility and equity for Americans seeking emotional support and assistance. By designating a three-digit number for suicide prevention and mental health crises, our leaders send a clear message that these concerns deserve the same immediate attention and access to assistance as a physical health emergency, while also reducing harmful stigmas that create barriers to treatment. As the leading software provider among the existing National Suicide Prevention Lifeline network of centers, we stand ready to support our customers making the transition to answering 988, and welcome new centers coming on board for the 988 initiative.

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May is Mental Health Month

Much of the focus worldwide in the last year has been the global Coronavirus pandemic, including guidelines from staying healthy and avoiding contracting COVID-19 or passing the disease to others. And while this is obviously a critical topic, it should not be forgotten that our mental health, especially during the pandemic, is important, too.

May is Mental Health Month, and organizations around the world are sharing information about how to obtain and maintain good mental health.

Each year since 1949, Mental Health America and their affiliates have led observance of Mental Health Month. This includes release of an annual Mental Health Month toolkit, which you can download here. They also have a number of resources available on their Mental Health Month web page, this year focusing on Tools 2 Thrive — practical tools that everyone can use to improve their mental health and increase their resiliency regardless of their personal situation. Topics include:

  • Adapting after trauma and stress
  • Dealing with anger and frustration
  • Getting out of thinking traps
  • Processing big changes
  • Taking time for yourself
  • Radical acceptance

The National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) is focusing on the power of connection and supporting one another, and promoting their core message of eliminating stigma, by sharing the message that those who many be having mental health difficulties or experiencing mental illness are not alone. Mental health conditions affect approximately 1 in 5 individuals during a given year.

The Canadian Mental Health Association (CMHA) has a number of articles and resources available in recognition of Canada’s Mental Health Week (May 3-9) which are available here. CMHA calls attention to the fact that, when asked how they are, people and Canadians in particular often respond with, “I’m fine,” even if they are not. CMHA is promoting more social connection and “getting real about how you feel.”

We hope during this Mental Health Month, our blog readers will take the time to engage with these and other mental health leaders to learn more and promote better mental health for all people, especially in light of the daily stressors and crises we all continue to face due to COVID-19.

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iCarol attends the American Association of Suicidology Conference

This Wednesday through Friday, members of our team will attend sessions at the American Association of Suicidology Conference, and we will also host a booth in the virtual exhibit hall.

The conference is a convergence of professionals working across the spectrum of the suicide prevention industry, from those operating crisis centers and other direct care services, to professionals working in academic settings conducting suicide prevention research, and advocates focused on prevention, education and awareness.

So we can continue to stay ahead of the topics that most impact iCarol’s customers, on Wednesday Dana will attend the Crisis Continuum pre-conference program, which concludes with a session on network updates and future directions for the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline Network.

Having supported crisis centers since the earliest days of the Lifeline network, and serving a large portion of the network that are iCarol customers, we have witnessed the Lifeline’s growth year after year, both in the number of participating centers and the volume of contacts the Lifeline receives through calls, chats, and other forms of communication. At this year’s update we’re anticipating the latest news from the 988 transition plan and how that will affect members of the Lifeline network. We’re also closely following the continuing conversations on how communities are changing their practices around responding to mental health emergencies and similar crises, with a shift towards crisis intervention teams and other professionals leading the response as opposed to law enforcement.

These discussions directly inform iCarol’s strategy and product development in the coming months and years, which ensures we will continue to meet the needs of suicide prevention and crisis centers everywhere, providing the tools they need to do their life-saving work.

If you plan to be at the AAS Conference, please stop by our virtual booth to download our new guides and materials, including a brand new ebook on choosing software for crisis intervention and suicide prevention services. We’ll also be available for virtual meetings at your convenience to answer your questions, or have conversations about your challenges or projects and explore how iCarol can be of assistance.

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Career Opportunity with The Senior Alliance

The Senior Alliance, based in Wayne, Michigan, is currently seeking a candidate for the position of Program Manager – LMSW.

The Program Manager – LMSW will manage a team of employees with the goal of improving the lives of older adults who are socially isolated. Effectively focus the team on achieving individual and program performance goals. Continually train the team to effectively enroll patients, implement the agency’s Hearken model, properly document cases and coordinate resource referrals to proper agency staff. Work with agency’s fiscal and information technology staff to insure data integrity, proper programmatic billing and report production. Serve as the agency’s liaison to the program’s partners. This is a temporary role pending budget continuance.

Education:
Master’s in Social Work – Program Manager must be a Licensed Master’s Social Worker with experience in counseling

Experience:
Minimum two years of experience in direct management of employees and programs, preferably in a professional environment. Demonstrated experience in developing and implementing projects and/or service delivery, including effectiveness in quality assurance/quality improvement activities with complex multi-year programs. Experience with business process, customer service, data management/flow mapping, interacting with high-level external stakeholders and community relations. Possess some understanding of database, system design, or application programming. Experience with Wellness Recovery Action Plan (WRAP) development, evidence-based diagnostic tools, and counseling. Familiarity with the aging network and community-based organizations is desirable.

Requirements:
Excellent interpersonal and group process skills. Is accurate, conscientious and flexible with attention to detail. Accepts direction, well organized, has the ability to meet deadlines and a willingness to work in a team environment. Is proficient with computers, including using data to generate meaningful queries and reports that help inform discussions regarding program effectiveness and future direction. Ability to develop collaborative partnerships with other agencies, draft documents for public distribution and make presentations on behalf of the agency. Must have valid driver’s license and reliable transportation. Perform job functions with ethics, honesty and integrity. The Senior Alliance (TSA) is a non-profit 501c(3) where philanthropy on behalf of the agency is a requirement of all employees.

Duties include:

  • Manage daily activities of Social Workers, Peer Mentors, Community Health Workers & Peer Volunteers and effectively address issues arising from client interactions;
  • Work alongside Director of Programs to develop the Hearken model and any associated grant application
  • Provide counseling to program clients;
  • Review pre and post scores on all diagnostic tools used in the program to determine program successes and areas of improvement
  • Ensure that all staff obtain and maintain required professional certifications when required;
  • Implement a continual training and skill development program for program staff;
  • Oversee data entry and documentation processes;
  • Lead regularly scheduled team meetings to continually develop staff skills, provide programmatic performance feedback and foster interaction between team members focused on experience sharing;
  • Develop and implement individual staff member and project work plans, as needed;
  • Develop and maintain open lines of communication with program partners (both internal and external);
  • Adhere to programmatic policies and procedures established with the program’s contractual partners;
  • Work with Information Technology Specialist to maintain functionality of the program’s database;
  • Work with the fiscal department to insure accurate and timely billing of programmatic activities;
  • Be an advocate for older adults and an effective speaker at local, state and national forums;
  • Other duties as assigned by the Chief Clinical Officer, Director of Programs, or CEO.

Learn More

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Happy 2-1-1 Day!

Each year, February 11th is celebrated as 2-1-1 day throughout North America.

2-1-1 is an easy-to-remember three digit number, but unlike 4-1-1 for directory assistance or 9-1-1 for life-threatening emergencies, the focus of 2-1-1 is to provide people with comprehensive information and referral to various human services in their communities.

Rather than spend hours of frustration going it alone calling around to various agencies or surfing the web, help-seekers can make 2-1-1 their first call for assistance and speak to a trained specialist that can spend time evaluating their needs, educating them about resources, and then connect them with the appropriate services. These 2-1-1 agencies widen their reach by making their services available via chat, texting, and integrating their well-curated database of resources into their website. They also build partnerships with other providers by sharing their resource information and making it available to collaborators in a multitude of ways. Of course, iCarol is delighted to help a large percentages of 2-1-1s across Canada and the United States tap into these tools and innovation to help their communities.

The specialists at 2-1-1 are considered some of the unsung heroes of the global Coronavirus pandemic. While they aren’t always highly visible first responders in their communities, they are certainly an integral part of the COVID-19 response. From very early on in the pandemic, 2-1-1 centers have served as community helplines for COVID-19 health information, and provided critical resource information to individuals and families suffering from the economic fallout caused by the Coronavirus. And now as communities are implementing their vaccine roll outs, once again 2-1-1s are often serving as part of that process as well.

iCarol is proud to be working with so many 211 providers whose organizations provide a vital service to their communities by connecting millions of people to essential services each year. If you work at a 2-1-1 and celebrated this day at your helpline, whether it’s just a small occasion or large outreach event, we want to hear from you! Send your stories and photos to me at dgrayson@icarol.com so we can feature them on our blog and share your experiences with our readers and recognize your organization.

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Database Administrator Career Opportunity at 211 Maryland

211 Maryland is currently seeking a candidate to fill the position of Database Administrator.

About the Position:

The Database Administrator oversees the evolution, expansion and maintenance of a statewide resource database that includes health and human service resources available to Marylanders and ensures standards are met by the Alliance of Information and Referral Systems (AIRS). They provide guidance and direction to 211 Maryland Call Center Resource Specialists, volunteers and information and referral specialists on database enhancements, development, and maintenance activities. The Database Administrator leads the creation of new partnerships with other statewide organizations that maintain health and human services databases to reduce duplication in resources and identify new partnerships. They serve as the point of contact for all statewide database requests.

Essential Duties and Responsibilities includes, but are not limited to :

    Database development oversight:
    In tandem with the Operations Director, develops statewide policy/procedures, documents and implements procedures for researching, selecting, classifying, indexing, and updating resource information to assure the accuracy, consistency and integrity of the database. Ensures that Inclusion/Exclusion criteria are uniformly applied statewide; a standardized profile is used for every resource; resources are classified by the AIRS/211 LA County taxonomy; and the database is updated annually. Networks with resource managers across the nation to stay abreast of best practices and developments in technology that could enable increased efficiencies. Regularly solicits input from call center resource specialist on resource needs and recommended system changes in accordance with identified needs.

    Identify best practices for database development and maintenance:
    In tandem with Operations Director and call centers, develop best practice policy/procedures for database improvements, maintenance, and technological upgrades. Support statewide efforts to increase agency resources, continued maintenance, and system updates. Support call centers with identifying resources and best practices to maintain and enhance their local resources. 10% Reporting: Creates customized resource reports. Collects and disseminates data on community resources as needed to support 211 Maryland’s public policy/statewide impact. 10% Relationship Building and Community Outreach: Identifies statewide collaboration opportunities. Oversee efforts to create data sharing agreements and processes with local and statewide organizations. Coordinates database activities among 211 pilots. Networks with community service providers to promote availability of online resource database and to coordinate efforts to update resource information.

    Training:
    Identify best practice training opportunities. Coordinates database maintenance activities and trainings for call centers resource staff. Provides direction and guidance to resource specialists, information, and referral specialists, in researching, developing, and updating resources. Provides training as needed for call center staff on use of information and referral software for resource development and maintenance using the AIRS/211 LA County Taxonomy of Human Services.

Administrator must consistently demonstrate competency in:

  • Maintaining a statewide resource database in accordance with AIRS standards.
  • Supervise, guide, and instruct staff and volunteers with database development tasks.
  • Plan daily work schedule and prioritize tasks to meet 211 MD’s goals and objectives.
  • Perform tasks with minimal direct supervision.
  • Build and manage external relationships.
  • Leading or participate in team projects as required.
  • Employ problem solving techniques when appropriate.

Qualifications and Requirements:

    Bachelor’s degree in Social Work, Human Services, Library Sciences, or related field with at least 2 years of experience in a human service organization. Knowledge of computer systems, database technology and data analysis techniques. Basic knowledge of human service delivery system. iCarol Resource Database administration experience preferred.

Abilities/Skills:

    Ability to express ideas clearly to individuals and groups.
  • Agility to make independent decisions using good judgement.
  • Organizational skills.
  • Attention to detail.
  • Strong relationship building and other interpersonal skills.

How to Apply:

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Join us for Bell Let’s Talk Day

Bell Let's Talk

Wednesday January 28th is a big day for Canadian mental health initiatives: It’s Bell Let’s Talk Day!

This annual event draws attention to the topic of mental health, particularly the stigma attached to mental illness that prevents many from seeking help. The idea is that if we all talk more openly about mental health and are open to conversations about it, it will lessen the shame attached to mental illness. Bell also champions access to care, workplace mental health, and research.

On Bell Let’s Talk Day, people are encouraged to take to social media and discuss the topics of mental health and mental illness. Certain social media activities, such as watching the official Bell Let’s Talk video, using their special profile photo frame in Facebook, or using their special Snapchat filter, will help raise funds for organizations that address Bell Let’s Talk’s initiatives. Bell donates 5¢ to mental health initiatives and programs across Canada (including many services that are part of the iCarol family!). Bell customers can also participate by texting or making calls. Find out more about how to take part.

Bell Let’s Talk has had a profound impact across Canada. Since the campaign began in 2011 there have been over 1 billion interactions around Bell Let’s Talk, with over $100 million donated to mental health initiatives. And 86% of Canadians say they are more aware of mental health issues since Bell Let’s Talk launched.

To learn more about Bell Let’s Talk, check out their website and toolkit that contains everything you need to participate. We hope you’ll follow us on Twitter and Facebook, to join us in raising funds and awareness so we can remove the stigma from the conversation about mental health!

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