Culturally Sensitive Psychoeducational Services for Hispanic Unaccompanied Children Web Panel

1:00pm - May 20, 2021 thru 2:30pm - May 20, 2021 | Timezone: US/Eastern
National Hispanic and Latino MHTTC
Registration Deadline:
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The National Hispanic & Latino Mental Health Technology Transfer Center in partnership with Mary’s Center and the University of Texas at Austin Steve Hicks School of Social Work the will be hosting a free webinar series for non-clinicians, case managers, clinical supervisors, health providers, program directors, administrators, and personnel who provide post-release services to unaccompanied minors.

Understanding culture-specific risk and protective factors associated with mental health among Latinos is essential. Unaccompanied children and youths are a particularly significant risk for psychological distress, including depression, anxiety, and posttraumatic stress and are less likely to access culturally responsive mental health services and continue to be undiagnosed or untreated. This can lead to negative outcomes such as negative interactions at school and with authorities, increased disconnection from family and society, and exposure to the criminal justice system. Even when released to the community, Latino unaccompanied children (UC) and youths often struggle to find a safe haven and are susceptible to abuse, crime victimization, difficulties adjusting to a new language and culture, and lack of needed educational, medical, mental health, and legal resources. Also, the provision of psychoeducation services to unaccompanied minors and their families about the stressors faced during the pre-migration, in-journey, and post-migration can serve to validate their experiences and help them navigate obstacles over time. Challenges that can be encountered during engagement with the client and their family will be discussed as well as resources and recommendations.


Learning objectives:

1. Recognize the effects of immigration detention and family separation on the attachment reactions of Hispanic unaccompanied children and youths.

2. Discuss Hispanic and Latino culture-specific risk and protective factors associated with mental health.

3. Consider the use of psychoeducation interventions to engage Hispanic unaccompanied children and youths and their parents into mental health and community services.





Luis H. Zayas, PhD, is the Dean, Professor, and the Robert Lee Sutherland Chair in Mental Health and Social Policy in the Steve Hicks School of Social Work; and Professor of Psychiatry at the Dell Medical School of The University of Texas at Austin. In addition to numerous papers in scientific journals, Dr. Zayas is the author of Latinas Attempting Suicide: When Cultures, Families, and Daughters Collide (Oxford, 2011) and Forgotten Citizens: Deportation, Children, and the Making of American Exiles and Orphans (Oxford, 2015).





Rosaura Orengo-Aguayo, Ph.D. is an Assistant Professor and bilingual clinical psychologist at the National Crime Victims Research and Treatment Center within the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at the Medical University of South Carolina (MUSC). Her research focuses on addressing mental health disparities among underserved populations (specifically Hispanic youth) through innovative implementation and dissemination methods, including telehealth. She also has an active program of research focused on the cultural adaptation and international dissemination of trauma-focused assessment and intervention. She directs the Puerto Rico Outreach Model in Schools- Esperanza (PROMISE), a SAMHSA-funded program aimed bolstering resiliency and promoting psychological recovery among Puerto Rican youth after hurricane Maria. She also co-directed a USAID-funded program aimed at creating trauma-informed systems and services for children in El Salvador. 



J Rocky Romero, PhD, LMSW is the CEO and owner of JR Romero & Associates, a training and consultant company he started almost 20 years ago. Dr. Romero is a former Assistant Professor of the New Mexico Highlands University School of Social Work in Albuquerque, NM. He served as the co-chair for Governor Richardson’s for the NM Higher Education Department on Cultural Competency Task-Force. Dr. Romero has also served as an Executive Council member for the NM-Consortium for Behavioral Health Training and Research. He completed his doctoral studies at the University of New Mexico in Language, Literacy and Sociocultural Studies with a focus on analyzing legal discourse through a critical race theory lens. Dr. Romero has been a trainer and consultant for the NHL-MHTTC for the last 10 years and a national trainer for Clare|Matrix, formerly the Matrix Institute, for the last 12 years. He is focused on culturally appropriate treatment while focusing on reducing health disparities for people of color. Lastly, Dr. Romero is focused on the intersections of racism, discrimination, and the impact of racialized legal discourse on people of color.