Youth Provider Summit Speakers, Panelists Announced

Mike Seals - September 4, 2020 11:32 am

OKLAHOMA CITY — The keynote speaker, breakout leaders and the legislative panel has been announced for a youth provider summit focused on Oklahoma’s homeless and displaced youth population. The summit, hosted by State. Rep. Chelsey Branham, will be broadcast virtually for attendees Sept. 10.

Oklahoma DHS Child Welfare Director Dr. Deb Shropshire is scheduled to be the keynote speaker for the event. Shropshire is a pediatrician and associate professor at the Children’s Hospital at OUHSC. She joined the Oklahoma Department of Human Services – Child Welfare Division in 2014 and was named its director in June 2019. Her advocacy and heart for traumatized children and families have been nationally recognized.

“Dr. Shropshire is a wealth of knowledge and experience,” Branham said. “She is going to be able to help attendees understand the breadth and depth of this issue as well as ways to address it.”

The summit will also include a series of breakout sessions after Shropshire’s address. Each breakout session will focus on a different topic related to homeless and displaced youth. The leaders of the breakout are Jamie Caves, SISU Youth Services; Amy Curran, Generation Citizen; Jennifer Goodrich, Pivot; Keith Pirtle, Oklahoma Commission on Children and Youth; Dr. Peter Messiah, Oklahoma Association of Youth Services; The Youth Board, Oklahoma Department of Human Services.

“Young people want to participate in their community in valuable ways,” Curran said. “Often, there is a lack of effective communication between youth and their adult community members. When civic development among youth is partnered with intentional community engagement, significant transformation happens. Our involvement in this summit comes from a desire to foster better communication between these stakeholders.”

The summit concludes with a bipartisan, bicameral legislative panel to discuss efforts currently being made in the Legislature to address the issues of homeless and displaced youth.

Legislative Panel Members include:

Senate Democratic Leader, Sen. Kay Floyd
Sen. Adam Pugh
Rep. Mark Lawson
House Democratic Minority Chair, Rep. Cyndi Munson

“We aren’t going to solve all the problems facing this vulnerable Oklahoma population,” Branham said. “We hope that we can continue to push for more education, resources, and collaborative solutions that lead to safer more prosperous outcomes for our young people.”

Nonprofit service providers and others in the community are encouraged to participate. If you would like to participate in the summit, please call (405) 577-7409 or email [email protected].


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