News for and about CAHS Employees
January 2017
In this issue ...
CAHS Food Drive Helps Area Families
Door Decorations and Merry Mingle Pics

NFP Program Graduates and My Fest Outreach
Suicide Prevention Training for CAHS Social Workers
Louisiana Spirit Update: 1,600 Helped Weekly
New Federal Law Reforms Mental Health
New Employees, Best Wishes, and Congratulations

Pictured above are just some of the CAHS employees, and BRPD Officer Darryl Honore, who participated in the CAHS holiday food drive to help area families. We are pleased to report that four full barrels of non-perishable food items were donated to the Greater Baton Rouge Food Bank. Thank you for caring so much for others in need.
Holiday Fun At CAHS

Merry Mingle

Special thanks to the Employee Relations Committee (ERC)
for hosting the Merry Mingle gathering, Dec. 21, at the main clinics.


Ugly Sweater Contest Winner

Is it "congratulations" we should say to Christiana Freeman, winner of the 2016 CAHS Ugly Sweater Contest? We think so, given the amount of time she spent making it.


Door Decorating Contest

The annual CAHS Door Decorating Contest brought out the creative holiday spirit in a number of employees who produced some beautiful presentations.

Thanks to all who participated and to the winners below.
Click here to see pictures of all of the doors
(Use Chrome browser to view the pictures)
Individual Winners

First place (pictured right):  Cynthia Clark, DD
Second place:  Trenton Allen, DD
Third place:  Ramona Harris, Admin.
Honorable mentions:  Debra Hebert, SB
Vidal Prograis, IT
Tony Square, HR


Group Winners
First place (pictured left)
Waiver Unit, DD

Second place
Children's Behavioral Health Services

Third place
School Based Therapy Program

Honorable Mention
Billing Department


Hot Chocolate Party

The School Based Therapy Program team celebrated the holidays with a hot chocolate party on Dec. 22. Check out the fun pics below.

Outreach At CAHS
CAHS Radio Spot Offers Real Help
During the Christmas and New Year holiday weekends, CAHS took part in a promotional campaign on radio station MAX 94.1.

Our own Certified Peers Tonja Myles and Ivan Toldson
pictured right) recorded a personal message about help that CAHS offers for persons dealing with mental health or substance use issues.
Click on the button to hear
their uplifting spot.
Nurse-Family Partnership Celebrates Program Graduates
The CAHS Nurse-Family Partnership program hosted an event Dec. 17 at the Goodwood branch of the East Baton Rouge Parish Library to recognize clients who recently completed the program. 

NFP recognized 15 graduates who benefited from the home visiting services. The room was full of smiling faces of the healthy children, moms, and family members who participated in the event.

The clients expressed their appreciation for the support, education, and care they received. The NFP would like to thank Aetna Better Health and United Health Care for donations used for refreshments and event supplies.
CAHS Participates in MY Fest Louisiana Program

Thanks to Bridget Lewis, Ivan Toldson, and Charlene Gillard (pictured right), for staffing the CAHS booth, Dec. 10, at the MY Fest Louisiana "CommUNITY Holiday Healing." 
The event, sponsored by Magellan Health, attracted about 2,000 youth and family members to the North Boulevard Town Square, where 50 exhibitors, including CAHS, shared information about their programs and services. 
MY Fest Louisiana was a free event hosted by MY Life youth groups from across Louisiana to inspire and empower young people.
I CARE Provides Suicide Prevention Training
for CAHS Social Workers

Pictured left (l-r): I CARE ASIST trainers Danita Leblanc of the state Office of Behavioral Health, and Maureen Laurent and Rosalind Wright, both of the I CARE program.

Thirty social workers from CAHS School Based Therapy Program and clincs attended a special suicide prevention training, presented Dec. 19-20, by the Baton Rouge I CARE program.

The Applied Suicide Intervention Skills Training (ASIST), held at CAHS on Government St., taught effective interventions to help prevent suicide. The program was developed in 1983 and has been regularly updated to reflect improvements in knowledge and practice. ASIST is the world’s leading suicide intervention workshop, and more than one million people have attended the workshops, since their inception. 

The workshop included interactive sessions with trainers, a presentation about a proven intervention model, group discussions, role play, and skills development.

Special thanks to I CARE for also providing snacks!
Louisiana Spirit Update: “See a need, fill a need.”

Since the August 2016 floods, the Louisiana Spirit team and Capital Area Human Services have engaged with thousands of survivors, meeting them in the recovery centers, hotels, and neighborhoods.

Our crisis and resource-linkage counselors -- that now total more than 50 in the field -- have conducted an average of 1,600 counseling and referral sessions per week with survivors throughout the region.

Louisiana Spirit counselors also have attended a variety of community events, such as the Ascension Parish Elderly and Developmentally Challenged Christmas Gala in Gonzales, a St. James Parish Council on Aging event in Vacherie, the Louisiana Housing Expo at the Celtic Center in Baton Rouge, and other activities where flood survivors were expected. The work will continue throughout 2017 and into future years, as the recovery continues.
New Federal Law Reforms Mental Health
and Fights Opioids Abuse Epidemic

Mental health reform and the nation's fight against opioids and heroin got a major push forward with the "21st Century Cures Act," passed by the Congress and signed into law by President Obama in December.

Louisiana Senator Bill Cassidy, MD,
pictured left with CAHS Executive Director Jan Kasofsky, PhD.) spoke about the pending legislation at CAHS' 2016 Annual Meeting in October and was instrumental in its substance and passage.

After the legislation's passage, Senator Cassidy's office noted that conversations he had with Dr. Kasofsky several years ago helped make him more aware of the need for integration of primary care and mental health.

CAHS has been a leader in working to develop guidelines and models for health care integration. Also, CAHS has waged campaigns in schools, workplaces, and communities to fight opioid use.

Among many other things, the federal measure would help children and adults by 1) providing grants to states to promote integration between primary and behavioral health care, 2) ensuring that physical and mental health are covered equally by insurers, 3) strengthening suicide prevention efforts, and 4) establishing a national mental health policy laboratory to identify new and effective models of care for adults and children.

The new law also addresses opioid treatment and prevention by providing $1 billion over 2 years for grants targeting opioid abuse prevention and treatment activities. More here.
Who's Who at CAHS

Please help us welcome these new employees:
Madison Pourciau, Line Technician, ABA
Sherry Verdel, LPC, School Based

Best Wishes, Emily
The School Based Therapy Program extends its best wishes to Emily Major, LCSW, who will continue her social work career in private practice.

Emily will be missed by her co-workers and by the schools, children, and families she served so well.


Congratulations, Ryan
Matthew "Ryan" Warner is off to a great start after graduating recently from River Parishes Community College in the field of Non-Destructive Testing Technology.

Ryan is the son of CAHS' Director of Business Operations Karla Lee-Muzik and was the college's first RPCC Foundation Technology Scholarship recipient. He works at the MISTRAS Group in Geismar as a Non-Destructive Testing Technician.
We Want to Hear From You!
CAHS Connections is your newsletter, about and for the employees and activities of Capital Area Human Services. We welcome your ideas and photos. Items of interest include program news, events, achievements, presentations, births, 25+-year anniversaries, contests, etc.

Please email your ideas and photos to or click on one of these names to send an email with your story ideas:
Karen Bray, Rafael Maza, Lynetta Butler,
Michael BrownRichard Brown, Jr.Betty Grant, and Shenitha Smith.

In case you missed it ... 
Click here to see last month's edition of CAHS Connections
Our Mission
To facilitate person-centered recovery by empowering people
of all ages with behavioral health needs and developmental disability challenges to strengthen relationships, establish independence, and enhance their ability to improve their
physical health and emotional well being.
Our Vision
Our network provides local access to best practices that respond to the unique needs of individuals living in the District's communities.

Copyright © 2017 CAHS/Capital Area Human Services, All rights reserved.

unsubscribe from this list    update subscription preferences 

Email Marketing Powered by Mailchimp