For early childhood mental health advocates
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KAIMH Connections

Resources for Early Childhood Mental Health Advocates


Updates |  April, 2023

It's not too late to register for the annual KAIMH Conference! Registration is open through April 17th - details are below. Other news you will find below is information about Start Early's three-part, virtual learning series on maternal health equity and well-being, a link to our new virtual Endorsement® recognition board, and a celebration of our newest Endorsees! Michigan State University Extension also has a free resource that includes 16 mindfulness activities to share with families, and Brazelton Touchpoints Center is offering a 2023 Parenting While Black series.



Michigan State University Extension has developed some free resources to support a family engagement in early childhood education. Mindfulness is the practice of slowing down and paying attention to the present moment. This packet  contains all 16 mindfulness activities.


Let's Celebrate!!

We are creating a visual recognition board of our IMH Endorsed® professionals, to be shared at our conference as well as on our website and Facebook page.  If you haven't already submitted your information, please send a headshot (a photo from your phone will work great!) and how you would like your name displayed to 

Did you already submit your info? Watch the video here!


KAIMH has multiple scholarship opportunities available for our annual conference! Be sure to complete this quick form to see if you are eligible. 





Join Us at the KAIMH Conference 2023!

April 27     Thursday (Day 1)

8:00 - 8:30  Registration and light breakfast
8:30 - 11:30  Understanding the Sensory System and Its Importance in Early Childhood  Development and Social-Emotional Regulation, Allie Ticktin
11:30 - 1:00  Lunch Provided, KAIMH Annual Meeting, Alice Eberhart-Wright Visionary Award
1:00 - 4:00  Keynote continued, Allie Ticktin (snack provided)

April 28     Friday (Day 2)

8:00 - 8:15   Check in and snacks
8:15 - 11:15  Who Decides If I’m Safe: Polyvagal Theory in Infant Mental Health, George Thompson
11:15 - 12:45  Lunch on your own
12:45 - 2:00

 Breakout Sessions 1&2:
Nurturing the Brain Body Connection, pt. 1
Meeting the Needs of Children in Foster Care. pt.1
What We Want for Babies: The Heart of Reflective Supervision
Be A Voice for Babies: Overview of Infant Mental Health
LGBTQIA: Cultural Competency: Best Practices for Working with LGBTQIA Youth and Families pt.1

2:00 – 2:15  Snack break
2:15 - 3:30

 Breakout Sessions 3&4:
Nurturing the Brain Body Connection, pt. 2
Meeting the Needs of Children in Foster Care. pt.2
Orientation to Endorsement®
Supervision: Reflective or Clinical
LGBTQIA: Cultural Competency: Best Practices for Working with LGBTQIA Youth and Families pt.2


Where: Wichita State University Metroplex

5015 East 29th St N, Wichita, KS 67220

11.5 total hours of KDHE approved in-service.

Early Bird discounts are available through April 12th. Member price: $225  Non-member price: $275 

Hotel rooms are available until April 12th at Hyatt Place at Wichita State University, 4703 E. 19th Street North, Wichita, KS To book your room, click here 




Keynote speaker, Allie Ticktin, MA, OTD, OTR/L is an Occupational Therapist & Founder of Play2Progress will be offering a 6 hour presentation on Thursday, April 27th, Understanding the Sensory System and Its Importance in Early Childhood  Development and Social-Emotional Regulation. 





George S. Thompson MD will be offering a 3 hour presentation on Friday, April 28th, Who Decides If I’m Safe: Polyvagal Theory in Infant Mental Health.

Breakout sessions will be offered Friday afternoon 

Be a Voice for Babies: Overview of Infant Mental Health 

Understanding infant mental health is foundational to the KAIMH Infant Mental Health Endorsement®. This presentation will provide an overview of infant mental health including the basics of brain development, definition of infant mental health, trauma and its impact on infant mental health, and strategies to support positive mental health for babies, families and caregivers.  

What We Want for Babies: The Heart of Reflective Facilitation

Joy Hoofer, Ph.D., IMH-E® and Jessica Mostaffa, LCPC, IMH-E® independent practitioners, have had the blessing of being Reflective Consultants for individuals and groups working in the early childhood field across Kansas. In this session, they will share their knowledge and experience around what they believe is the heart of reflective consultation/supervision and how it produces what we truly want for all babies. Through moments of experiential learning, the session will provide opportunities to increase self-awareness, demonstrate the importance of the parallel process in our work and provide two RS/C frameworks. Be prepared to observe, listen, wonder and respond to all this session has to offer.    

Orientation to Endorsement

The KAIMH IMH Endorsement® is a credential that supports and recognizes the development of professionals who work with or on behalf of infants, toddlers and their families.  This credential uses a nationally recognized set of competencies that define best practice and guides professional growth.  This presentation will discuss the process of completing Endorsement®, the value of IMH Endorsement®, an overview of KAIMH, and how Endorsement® can benefit professionals in the early childhood field.

LGBTQ+ Cultural Competency and Best Practices for Working with LGBTQ+ Youth and Families

Being culturally competent means learning new patterns of behaviors, research trends, and social cues of a specific community and then effectively applying them into our personal and professional lives. This training covers the experiences, values, and belief systems specific to LGBTQ+ youth and their families. Participants will gain a heightened sense of personal awareness to encourage a safe and positive environment for sexual and gender minorities and will identify achievable strategies and adaptations for increasing confidence when working with LGBTQ+ youth and families.

Nurturing the Brain Body Connection 
Physical activities that promote body integration strengthen neural pathways, which enable us to process new information and changing situations better. This workshop will help participants recognize these important connections and select activities to enhance the brain-body connection. This course is appropriate for all early care and education professionals.

Meeting the Needs of Children in Foster Care
This training is designed to support providers who care for children that are in the foster care system. This training will provide a brief overview of trauma, trauma triggers, and toxic stress and how it impacts children. It will also help providers understand and support the unique needs of children in foster care and develop an understanding of how to support children with complex emotions related to trauma and family transitions. This course is appropriate for all early care and education professionals.

Supervision: Reflective or Clinical

Infant Mental Health professionals frequently focus on collaborative relationships to improve program quality and strengthen practice. However, when psychopathology creates complications, clinical supervision becomes part of the reflective supervisory approach. In such cases, supervisors must focus on four core clinical roles: Teacher, Consultant, Coach, and Mentor/Role Model if optimal outcomes are to be obtained. This presentation focuses on implementation of these roles in a clinical setting.

Congratulations to our newest Infant Mental Health Endorsees! 


Jillian Martin, IMH-E®

 She is a Family Support Specialist with KCSL Healthy Families. She says, “Having this endorsement allows me to further my education abilities in both my personal and professional life while working with the families that I serve. I have been in this field for five years now and this will give me more tools and resources to empower families and add to their toolbox of parenting skills in order to build loving and trusting relationships with their children.”


 Debbie Hildebrandt, IMH-E®

She is an Early Care and Education Specialist at Child Care Aware of Eastern Kansas. She says, "I choose to pursue an Endorsement to not only further my own professional growth and deepen my understanding of Infant and Toddler mental health but to be able to share my knowledge with the teachers I coach."




Start Early is offering a three-part, virtual learning series about maternal health equity and well-being, designed to build early childhood professional skills in supporting people who are pregnant and/or have recently given birth. Key areas of focus include physical recovery, maternal health warning signs, mental health and wellness, maternal self-care, and systems of social support.
Start Early is offering the learning series free of charge. The series runs May – July and is open to anyone who provides care and service to birthing people and new families, with particular emphasis on home visitors, home visiting supervisors, birth justice advocates, doulas, and health care providers. Expert panelists will bring diverse perspectives and backgrounds to each topic, centering the voices of birthing people and their families. To learn more and register for this event, click here. 

If you have questions, please contact

Hosted by Start Early in partnership with the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill’s 4th Trimester Project.




The Brazelton Touchpoints Center is offering 2023 Parenting While Black series, Radically Resistant: Fostering the Brilliance and Awe in Raising Bold Black Children. This free virtual series offers a safe and welcoming space to hold conversations for and by Black families. All are welcome to join and engage in these powerful conversations!

The five-part series continues on April 17 through June 26, 2023. Each webinar is 1 hour followed by a 30-minute Q&A session with our parent panelists. The series is moderated by Eurnestine Brown, PhD, Director of Relational Equity and Belonging at the Brazelton Touchpoints Center.

Each webinar includes live Spanish language translation and closed captioning.

Click here to learn more and register.

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