From June 13-15, 2023, iCarol will participate and hold virtual exhibit space as part of the Texas Suicide Prevention Symposium.
This is our second year participating in the event and we look forward to engaging with professionals working to prevent suicide in Texas. There are numerous exciting projects and initiatives happening in the state. Texas has an impressive suicide prevention collaborative made up of nearly 40 community centers working to serve the entire state, including many who operate 988 as a primary or backup center.
We encourage you to visit our virtual exhibit booth using the Whova app. At our booth you can download several materials about how iCarol is serving suicide prevention centers including 988 centers, and the tools and technology available when you work with iCarol. Our virtual booth will be staffed during conference hours – please chat in with your questions and we’ll promptly respond! If you’d like to meet with us another time to learn more, please schedule a meeting at your convenience.
This year, for the first time, iCarol will exhibit at the SOLD OUT Child Care Aware of America Symposium in Arlington, Virginia.
In recent years iCarol has welcomed several new customers who are Child Care Resource and Referral agencies. These agencies curate a comprehensive database of child care providers in their state, province, or region. This includes all sorts of information that parents and caregivers need when researching their options and making decisions — hours of operation, current openings, languages spoken, pre-school or educational programs offered, voucher acceptance, locations, and much more.
Child Care Resource and Referral agencies using iCarol have found that iCarol’s resource database offers the ultimate flexibility for their needs. Further, iCarol helps them document and track their interactions with parents, caregivers, and others who are inquiring about available care in their community. iCarol is also helping them send child care referrals by Email and SMS/Text, allowing them to accept online inquiries using Public Web Forms, and keep their listings updated while using less staff resources to do so with Automated Resource Verification.
If you’re going to the conference, please stop by and visit Veronica at our booth, which will be located at the entrance to the exhibition and registration area. We have lots of great information to provide, and you can also download our new eBook. We’re excited to see you in Arlington!
From Wednesday, April 19 through Friday, April 21, Aaron from the iCarol team will be at the American Association of Suicidology Conference in Portland, Oregon hosting our booth in the exhibit hall and attending other events.
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, advocates focused on prevention, education and awareness, and those with lived experience.
So we can continue to stay ahead of the topics that most impact iCarol’s customers and continue to support the work of crisis centers, Aaron will join a number of networking and information events. This includes the Lines for Life crisis center tour, and receptions and networking meetings for 988 centers.
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, and eventually transitioning to the 988 initiative. At this year’s update we’re anticipating the latest news on the development and growth of the 988 network. We’re closely following the continuing conversations on how communities are changing their practices around responding to mental health emergencies and similar crises, with a continuing shift towards crisis intervention teams and other professionals leading the response as opposed to law enforcement.
iCarol enthusiastically supports the efforts to reimagine crisis response in communities across the United States. It’s crucial that people everywhere have access to human-focused, culturally competent crisis care that meets their needs whether that be through an empathetic listener on a crisis line, an in-person visit from a mobile crisis response team, or a stay at a crisis stabilization center. It’s our mission to provide tools to crisis centers that help them respond to their community’s needs. We hope you’ll explore our website to learn more about how we are serving this industry.
The discussions at AAS 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. That’s why we want to ensure we take advantage of being together in-person in Portland to have conversations about challenges, needs, and solutions. If you plan to be at the AAS Conference, please stop by our booth to download our guides and materials, including our ebook on choosing software for crisis intervention and suicide prevention services. Aaron will be available for meetings at your convenience to answer your questions, or have conversations about your challenges or projects and explore how iCarol can be of assistance.
Even with increased awareness and understanding about mental health and mental illness, mental health care, particularly psychiatric care, can still be difficult to access. This often leaves Primary Care Physicians (PCPs), nurses, and other healthcare workers on the frontlines of mental health care in the United States.
However, in Utah PCPs can access specialized psychiatric consultations through the Consultation Access Link Line to Utah Psychiatry (CALL-UP) Program. This legislative funded program is designed to address the limited number of psychiatric services in Utah and improve access to them, and serves patients at no cost to providers or patients in the state of Utah.
iCarol is proud to play a role in the service delivery of CALL-UP, through CALL-UP’s use of iCarol for psychiatrist on-call shift sign up, CALL-UP program documentation to maintain state funding, and through iCarol’s Public Web Forms.
Here’s how iCarol fits into the service delivery workflow of the CALL-UP program in Utah:
- The on-call service for psychiatry consultation is available Monday through Friday from 12:00pm to 4:30 pm. Participating psychiatrists are invited by the CALL-UP program administrators to sign into the iCarol system to sign up for shifts where they will be on-call for consultations.
- Primary Care Physicians (PCPs) are instructed to contact the CALL-UP program to request a consultation. If the PCP calls in, CALL-UP staff collect basic demographic, needs, and other important data from the PCP in order to comply with state funding requirements, which is input by the phone specialist into iCarol, using an iCarol Contact Form. Then, they can forward the call to the on-call psychiatrist for the consultation to occur.
- PCPs can also request a consultation online, using an iCarol Public Web Form. The form has a built-in screening element that first ensures the requestor is a physician, as this is a requirement for program access. If they are not a physician, a prompt instructs them to please contact their doctor.
- If the requestor is a PCP then they continue to use the form to provide the information needed to obtain a consultation, including the demographic and other information required to maintain state funding.
- Once the Public Web Form is received by CALL-UP staff, they have the information they need to contact the PCP requesting consultation, and connect them with the on-call psychiatrist. Because the iCarol Web Form is simply a publicly available iCarol Contact Form, they already have the data they need, automatically submitted to iCarol with the form, to meet their reporting requirements.
For more information about Utah’s CALL-UP Program, visit their website.
Want to learn more about Public Web Forms and talk through how they might be used for your program or partnership?
Email Us Schedule a Meeting
The following is being shared from the United States Office for Victims of Crime.
OVC anticipates making up to 2 awards of up to $2 million each for up to a 36-month period of performance, to begin on October 1, 2023.
This program seeks to enhance or expand the capacity of national hotlines that are essential for providing crisis intervention services, safety planning, information, referrals, and resources for victims of crime.
It also supports participation in the National Hotline Consortium, a group of leading national victim service and crisis intervention hotlines that share technology service delivery and promising practices to provide high-quality support for victims and survivors.
During a Pre-Application webinar, OVC staff will review solicitation requirements and conduct a question and answer session with interested potential applicants. Participation in the webinar is optional, but strongly encouraged.
The Pre-Application Webinar is scheduled for:
Date: Friday, March 24, 2023
Time: 11:00 a.m.–12:00 p.m., eastern time
This opportunity closes on May 1, 2023.
Whether you trialed Automated Follow-ups or not, we want to hear from you!
As you may have heard, iCarol recently wrapped up a trial of a new Automated Follow-ups Feature.
In order to learn from this experience and plan for future feature releases and trials, we are requesting customer feedback in the form of a survey.
We are encouraging all iCarol customers to take the survey, even if you did not know about Automated Follow-ups or if you did not participate in the trial. The survey takes less than 1 minute to complete – log in to iCarol and navigate to our Help Center or Admin Dashboard for the link to the survey!
CW: This blog post discusses stalking, sexual assault, and intimate partner violence.
January is National Stalking Awareness Month (NSAM), and though millions of men and women are stalked every year
in the United States, the crime of stalking is often misunderstood, minimized and/or ignored.
What is “stalking?”
Stalking is a pattern of behavior directed at a specific person that causes fear. Many stalking victims experience being followed, approached and/or threatened — including through technology. Stalking is a terrifying and psychologically harmful crime in its own right as well as a predictor of serious violence.
Facts about stalking*
- In 85% of cases where an intimate partner attempted to murder their partner, there was stalking in the year prior to the attack.
- Of the millions of men and women stalked every year in the United States, over half report being stalked before the age of 25 and over 15% report it first happened before the age of 18.
- Stalking often predicts and/or co-occurs with sexual and intimate partner violence. Stalkers may threaten sexual assault, convince someone else to commit assault and/or actually assault their victims.
- Nearly 1 in 3 women who were stalked by an intimate partner were also sexually assaulted by that partner.
- Stalking tactics might include: approaching a person or showing up in places when the person didn’t want them to be there; making unwanted telephone calls; leaving unwanted messages (text or voice); watching or following someone from a distance, or spying on someone with a listening device, camera, or GPS.
What is the impact on stalking victims?*
- 46% of stalking victims fear not knowing what will happen next.
- 29% of stalking victims fear the stalking will never stop.
- 1 in 8 employed stalking victims lose time from work as a result
of their victimization and more than half lose 5 days of work or more.
- 1 in 7 stalking victims move as a result of their victimization.
- Stalking victims suffer much higher rates of depression, anxiety, insomnia, and social dysfunction than people in the general population.
How you can help
Helpline staff and volunteers can do a number of things to help people who reach you and talk about being stalked:
- Provide validation and empathy.
- Don’t minimize behaviors that are causing the person concern (e.g. “I wouldn’t worry.” “That doesn’t sound harmful.” “They’re only text messages.”)
- Encourage the person to keep keep detailed documentation on stalking incidents and behavior. More information and a template can be found here.
- Use Stalking Harassment and Risk Profile (SHARP) Risk Assessments at your organization. More information and a template can be found here.
- Empower and help the person develop a safety plan that is flexible, comprehensive, and contextual. More information can be found in this guide for advocates.
- If your organization does not provide direct services to assist with the issue, provide helpful resources such as a local domestic/intimate partner violence helpline, sexual assault helpline, legal resources, law enforcement, etc.
We all have a role to play in identifying stalking and supporting victims and survivors. We encourage you to learn more from the Stalking Prevention, Awareness, and Resource Center at www.stalkingawareness.org.
*Source: Stalking Prevention, Awareness, and Resource Center (SPARC)
Guest blogger Sidhra Musani is Program Manager at Dr. Shabaz Charity Group
Guest blog views and opinions expressed are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official position of CharityLogic/iCarol, or iCarol’s parent company, Harris Computer Systems.
Help Us Launch Our Mental Health Helpline to Support the Greater Minnesota
Community by December 2022!
Sukoon: Healing of the Minds is an initiative that aims to provide support and resources for
minds in distress in a culturally informed manner, particularly for underserved and
marginalized communities. It’s designed to help individuals from all walks of life cope when
they are struggling with their mental health and wellness, regardless of their background,
situation or needs. So everyone can get the help they need, with confidentiality and empathy,
without fear of judgment or stigma.
Our Helpline Will Serve 7 Days a Week!
The helpline will be open and available to the local community 7 days a week. Individuals
can call/text the line anytime between 8 PM and 8 AM for anonymous and free support. Our
culturally informed and trained respondents will respond by seeking to listen, understand,
support, encourage, and assist as needed. Referrals to practitioners, support groups, local
agencies, and other relevant resources will also be provided to connect the caller/texter with
potential next steps.
What sets us apart? Empathy with Cultural Understanding.
Did you know that BIPOC communities in particular are much more likely to develop mental
health conditions? Among the major barriers for treatment are lack of access to culturally
informed mental health treatment and the gaping demand for understanding the unique
mental health needs of those communities. Cultural challenges get in the way, and anxiety as
well as stigma prevent people from reaching out. Our diverse team of respondents
understands those cultural challenges and struggles. As the organization works to develop
specialized care services, our aim is for individuals to begin their journey to healing through
this helpline with informed respondents who can understand and validate their experiences
(through mutual lived experiences). All respondents are trained to help with the following
- Grief & Loss
- Mental Health Challenges
- Cultural and Religious issues
- Financial Stress
- Intimate Partner Violence
- Child Abuse or Neglect
- Substance Use & Abuse
- Sexual Assault
- Identity Crisis
About the Organization
Dr. Shabaz Charity Group (DSCG) is a nonprofit organization that aims to create specialized
programming, increase awareness, and provide resources to strengthen the mental, physical
and emotional health and wellness of our greater Minnesota community. Our focus is to
bridge the gap in providing culturally informed resources and mental health services to
minority communities. Please help us provide these resources by donating to our campaign!
The Dr. Shabaz Charity Group is non-profit charity organization with 501(c)(3) status. All
donations are tax deductible.
Want to support this work with a one-time donation? Donate HERE
Interested in becoming a monthly donor? Check out our $100 or $10 monthly campaigns.
Want to learn more about the work we’re doing, check out our website HERE.
Have any questions, comments, suggestions, or concerns, please do contact us at
email@example.com or give us a call at 612-282-5150.
According to a new release from the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC), it will adopt 9-8-8 as the number to call or text for Canadians who are in need of immediate mental health crisis and suicide prevention intervention. Once implemented by telephone and wireless service providers, calls and texts to 9-8-8 will be directed to a mental health crisis or suicide prevention service, free of charge.
Much like the change already adopted in the United States, the implementation of 9-8-8 as an easy-to-remember three-digit number will help reduce barriers to mental health and suicide prevention resources. The number will enable greater access regardless of geographic location or socioeconomic status as it will be available from coast to coast, 24/7 and free of charge. Furthermore, the ability to text to 9-8-8 will ensure that people in crisis who are unable to safely call, or prefer texting, are able to obtain counselling.
Currently, people in Canada who are experiencing mental health distress can obtain assistance through Talk Suicide Canada by dialing toll-free 1-833-456-4566. Residents of Quebec are encouraged to call 1-866-APPELLE (1-866-277-3553). Talk Suicide Canada’s text service is available in the evenings from 4:00 p.m. to midnight EST by texting 45645.
For more information, visit the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission website.
Happy Pride Month!
At iCarol we live by the Harris Computer Systems core values, including the first and most important value: Respect of the Individual.
Of course that means creating a safe space where everyone is encouraged to live as their authentic selves and express who they are and how they wish to be addressed. That feeling extends to all of our customer organizations and end users of the iCarol software.
In the iCarol Help Center Community, and in responses to our latest customer survey, we received several requests for the ability for volunteers and staff users to note their pronouns within the iCarol system.
We’re excited to announce that sharing one’s pronouns in their volunteer/staff profile is a new enhancement that will be included in our latest release to iCarol. This release is expected to go into affect today, Tuesday, June 14.
Enabling and using pronouns in iCarol is easy. If a volunteer or staff member would like to share their pronouns, they should first edit their profile, then choose their pronouns from the dropdown menu, and click the ‘Save’ button.
Once enabled, a user’s pronouns will appear alongside their name throughout the different areas of iCarol where knowing a person’s pronouns will help you communicate and address them as they wish to be addressed, such as the main Contacts page.
And when viewing shifts.
Learning and then using a person’s correct pronouns creates a healthy and safe workplace environment, conveys respect, and affirms one’s identity. We hope this enhancement will help you and your team support one another and foster inclusion within your organization! If you have any questions, please open a ticket with our Support Team using the iCarol Help Center!