Featuring Joan Callander Dingle

Joan Callander Dingle is a mom, grandmother and a great grandmother who adopted her grandson, Chad, who is now 24 years old.  For more than 20 years she has trained and spoken to, on both local and national levels, relative caregivers and those who support them.  She is the author of two books, Raising Children of Alcoholics and Drug Users and Second Time Around.  In 2015 she spoke at a White House Briefing on needed changes in foster care and services for grandparents parenting grandchildren.  She lives in Oregon where she writes a monthly “grandparent” column for the Portland Family Magazine.

Conference Schedule

8:00 - 8:30 AM   Registration—Resource & Benefits Fair Opens 

8:30 - 9:00 AM   Conference Starts
                           Welcome/Successfully Raised
                           Lexi Caudill, Granddaughter

9:00 -10:30 AM  Keynote Session
                           Joan Callander Dingle

Refocus & Reconnect:  Changing Childhoods, Restoring Hope, Enjoying Today
Families parenting relatives’ children face a tangle of emotional, legal, and practical challenges including working with traumatized and special needs infants/youth often resulting from parental use of drugs/alcohol.  By setting personal limits (boundaries), changing a few common words and phrases, and having truthful, age-appropriate conversations about birth parents with their offspring life can quickly go from stressful to successful.   

Discover how setting boundaries (personal limits), changing simple everyday words, and talking openly and honestly with children about their birth parent(s) empowers you and fosters confidence and self-esteem in the children you parent.

10:45 AM - 12:00 PM  Workshop Session One

1.  Navigating the Legal Path to Guardianship, Custody & Adoption  
     Jenny Scott, Attorney at Law

An overview of current law; basic process and considerations for grandparents and other relatives in seeking guardianship, custody or adoption.

2.  Discipline and the Traumatized Child             
     George Humlong, UK Training Resource Center

As grandparents and relatives gain experience with children in their care, they often find effective discipline to be difficult.  Methods and strategies that are effective with birth children in a typical home often fall short with children placed in their home due to the effects of trauma on a child’s body and mind.  To better understand and be effective in discipline with a child in care, grandparents and relatives will learn/review how trauma affects development and a child’s perception of their environment.  Participants with learn five factors to help bring peace to their home. 

3.  Hiding in Plain Sight (Current Drug Trends)
     Trooper Robert Purdy, Kentucky State Police

Unfortunately, teens often exhibit some of the most risky behavior when compared to other age groups.  Drugs and alcohol use is even further accentuated with peer pressure and the ideation that drugs are becoming decriminalized.  In addition to their perception of illegal activity, there are also new technological advancements in the drug and alcohol world which makes detection by others much harder. 

The workshop is designed to educate community leaders, caregivers and professionals working with teens about some of the current drug trends affecting our youth.

4.  Childhood Anxiety and How to Respond
     Geoff Wilson, The Ridge Behavioral Health System      

Childhood anxiety disorder is one of the more common mental health disorders that effects youth.  This workshop will provide attendees with an overview of the more common anxiety disorders youth experience. The importance of early assessment and treatment we be covered along with tips for family members to be more effective in their response. 

12:00 - 1:00 PM  Lunch & Door Prizes

1:00 - 2:00 PM    Workshop Session Two

5. How to Begin and Benefit from Support Groups
     Becky Wilson, Eleschia Murphy & Members of the Spencer County Support  Group

In this workshop you will hear from the facilitators as well as the participants of a Grandparents Raising
Grandchildren support group that started over 6 years ago and still continues to meet regularly.  You
will hear the benefits that this group has provided and the impact it has had on the caregiver, the child,
and other people. 

You are not alone!  There are others in similar situations that can help to encourage, give you strength,
and guide you in the right direction.  Utilize their experience to help you succeed in your journey.   

6.  Practical Application of Discipline for the Traumatized Child *        
     George Humlong, UK Training Resource Center

Being lovable, feeling worthwhile and acting in a responsible manner are what any child or young adult needs to be successful in life.  Because of the effects of past trauma, adults must often change their approach to discipline to help a traumatized child realize these necessary life skills.

This presentation will focus on developing a practical and effective plan to address a behavior a grandparent or relative wants a traumatized child/youth in their care to stop.

*Attending workshop #2 is helpful but not required

7.  How Did I Get Here: The Push & Pull of Caretaking
     Myrtle Proctor, LCSW

Participants will look at choices for a more successful relationship between themselves and those that they care for.  There will be a brief review of parenting roles with the focus on caregiver’s expectations.  Lastly when, where and how to seek help if appropriate.

8.  Planning for Your Loved One with Special Needs
     Karen Perch, Attorney at Law

In the event of death of grandparents what will happen to the special needs child or child they have been raising. Discover some ways to protect the child’s eligibility for benefits in the session.

2:00 - 3:30 PM    Featured Session                      

9.  Visitation & Transition Strategies when Parenting Grandkids
     Joan Callander Dingle

Tips for keeping grandkids emotionally, mentally and physically safe before, during and after the five basic types of parental visitations:  supervised, unsupervised, prison, holiday, and technology hook-ups (cell phone, social media, etc.).   Suggestions for documenting birthparent and/or child’s behavior and communication with caseworkers, courts, health care professionals and educators to secure future placement and/or needed services and safeguards.HH

Benefits Consults

Representatives will be available to meet individually about benefits such as social security, DCBS family support (KTAP, SNAP, etc.), adoption, kinship care services, Medicaid and SHIP (State Health Insurance Program).  Let us know if you are interested in a benefits consult on the registration page.  Then, sign up for a consult time when you arrive on March 16th.

 Legal Consults

Volunteer Attorneys will be available for free legal consultations.  To request a consultation, you will need to fill out the Legal Consultation Request form (on the back of the registration form) and send it in with your registration.  There are a limited number of time slots, and they will be filled in the order received. 

 The 2017 Conference is sponsored by funds from the following

Fayette County Bar Foundation

Kentucky Bar Foundation

Community Collaboration for Children, Friends of Children


Conference Committee:

Deep Springs Family Resource Center
Fayette County Cooperative Extension Office
LFUCG Aging & Disability Services
Sandersville/Meadowthorpe Family Resource Center
UK College of Social Work
Ann D’Ambruoso, Oeltgen & D’Ambruoso PLLC
Robin Cooke, Attorney at Law
Carl Devine, Miller, Griffin & Marks, PSC
Anna Dominick, Miller, Griffin & Marks, PSC
Kathy Allen
Joan Brandenburg
Sandra Flynn
Rita Hardman
Don Pratt
Donna Rash
Martha Evans Sparks


From I-75/I-64:  Take Exit 115, then turn west on Newtown Pike.
The Hotel is on the left at the first stoplight.

From Downtown:  Take Main Street to Newtown Pike.
Turn right onto Newtown Pike and go approximately 5 miles. 
The Hotel is on the right, before the interstate.

Hotel Room Reservations

Clarion Hotel
1950 Newtown Pike
Lexington, KY
(888) 390-4918
Ask for the $95 GAP Conference block rate

Click for Registration Form

Click for Total Conference Information

For more information on Grandparents as Parents visit: http://www.gapofky.org/