Silvia* and Carlos* immigrated to the United States with their two young children after surviving a series of traumatic events in their home country. The transition to their new life in Massachusetts was difficult and brought many challenges.
Silvia and Carlos’ 13-year-old son, Vincent*, had attended only five days of school during the first four months of the school year. Due to excessive truancy, Vincent’s school filed a Child Requiring Assistance (CRA) application with the Juvenile Court. The presiding judge referred Vincent to ACS for a comprehensive diagnostic evaluation.
An ACS clinician interviewed Vincent. She immediately observed his emotional distress and behavioral difficulties, including refusing to talk with her. She understood that his struggles were likely linked to his exposure to serious and prolonged stress, including traumatic events in his home country, a frightening immigration experience, chronic housing instability, and severe bullying by his peers.
After interviewing Vincent’s family members, teachers, and healthcare providers and carefully reviewing his medical and school records, Vincent’s clinician presented her recommendations to the Court. She recommended that Vincent be placed in a specialized residential facility where he would receive trauma-informed care and the stability he desperately needed to begin to heal and make meaningful progress.
Our clinician’s work didn’t stop there. She followed up with the family, attorneys, and providers to ensure that Vincent received the recommended services. The tireless education and advocacy efforts she made on Vincent’s behalf enabled him to secure a spot in a long-term therapeutic residential program. The clinician also helped Silvia and Carlos enroll in a parenting support group and the whole family is now engaged in family therapy.
*To protect confidentiality, ACS does not use the names, photos, or identifying features of our clients.
The ACS clinician immediately observed his emotional distress and behavioral difficulties, including refusing to talk with her. But she refused to give up.