On the Blog

Visiting Day

Arizona state university, asu, #1 in innovation, be the solution, ccwb, cip, center for child well being

Picture book – Young readers/school-age readers


Visiting Day is beautifully illustrated, with rich, vibrant images of an African American family experiencing a visit with an incarcerated father. A little girl looks forward to visiting her incarcerated father with her grandmother. She and her grandmother prepare for the visit, getting dressed up, preparing food and riding the bus. When the visit is over, they look forward to the next visit, but also the day that the father will live with them again. The prose is relatable and accessible, telling a difficult story exquisitely.


The story is primarily relatable to children of incarcerated parents, but the beautiful illustrations and positive stories are compelling enough to assist other children to understand visiting a parent.


Donate today to help lessen the stigma of incarceration through literature.
Arizona State University, ASU, #1Innovation, Children of Incarcerated Parents. CIP, Be the Solution , Libraries, library books, prisons, books in prisons, Florence, Florence Prison Arizona

Sing Sing Midnight

Arizona state university, asu, #1 in innovation, be the solution, ccwb, cip, center for child well being

The story of an incarcerated parent is told through the character of an orange cat named Midnight who lives in a prison. A little girl named Maya misses her father who is incarcerated and goes to visit him with her mother and brother every week. One week Maya is worried about who takes care of her father in prison, and her father tells her the story of Midnight the cat and how he helps the prisoners. The book paints a more comforting story of prison life for young readers, while also addressing Maya’s separation from her father. However, at its heart, this is a positive story of Midnight’s journey to the prison and his relationship and activities with the prisoners.


While children of incarcerated parents will find it particularly compelling, this story is relatable to all audiences as it is primarily Midnight’s story of his discovery of his purpose and his home.

Arizona State University, ASU, #1Innovation, Children of Incarcerated Parents. CIP, Be the Solution , Libraries, library books, prisons, books in prisons, Florence, Florence Prison Arizona

5 Ways to Use Tech to Teach Life Skills

We know that technology is constantly changing and evolving, and as a society use technology to complete many of our daily tasks.  With this evolution of technology, how do we ensure our children are building necessary life skills to prepare them for adulthood?  HRMOM Melissa B. Griffin discusses this topic in a recent blog post “If our kids have time for HOURS of Snapchat or Instagram,” she asserts, “they have time to learn marketable skills on these same laptops and devices.” She believes that by helping them to build confidence in these versions of “adulating” they will experience less anxiety when they are expected to perform them on their own.  If we help our children, and ease them into these types of experiences and encourage them while they make their fumbling attempts, we can help them build confidence and prepare them for a time in their lives when they are on their own, in their first jobs, or living in their first apartments.

Everyone Makes Mistakes: Living with My Daddy in Jail

Arizona state university, asu, #1 in innovation, be the solution, ccwb, cip, center for child well being

Everyone Makes Mistakes Living with my Daddy in Jail is unique in that it was written by 10 year old Madison Strempek. Part self-help book, and part auto-biography, Madison tells her story and how she overcame difficulty. Coming from a large, supportive Korean family, Madison’s parent are divorced when her father makes a mistake and goes to jail. Madison’s voice shines through as she speaks about being sad and missing her father, but her optimism and strength are also apparently when she suggests that children identify who it is you can talk to for help and use hobbies and other things you love as distraction and focus.

The book walks through a broad range of topics like visiting your parent, handling conversations with peers, and utilizing teachers and counselors as support. After each section, there are prompts for the reader to complete such as identifying who you can talk to or listing questions that you have.

This is a good resource for children of incarcerated parents to hear from someone who has been in their shoes. While not applicable to a general audience, the book should also be read by those working with children of incarcerated parents for its unique child perspective.


Registration Is Now Open for CIP 2020!

Incarceration, Incarcerated Parents, #1Innovation, CIP2020


From Awareness to Action, Children of Incarcerated Parents 3rd Annual National Conference

Don't miss this exciting conference!  Join Us!

April 20-22nd | Phoenix, Ariz. | Venue: The Wigwam Resort , Litchfield Park, AZ 

Looking back to our first two years, the focus of the National Children of Incarcerated Parents Conference has been on building awareness and collaboration. This year, our audacious conference goal is to expand programming, advocacy and policy, across the country in a big way.

We have been inspired by the feedback from prior conference attendees who have been motivated to return home and put in place programming. That is a great start! We are also dismayed at the lack of policy at the federal, state and local levels that would better the lives of these children and their families. In order to meet this year’s goal we will be offering tracks in the following three areas:

Track One:  Service & Practice in Programs and Systems
Track Two:  Community Advocacy
Track Three:  Promoting Public Policy


Registration is now open!
Join Us for CIP 2020 

A mother and her son, with the words "Showing: work x family"
Showing Work x Family in Downtown’s University Center this Fall
This fall, the ASU Center for Child Well-Being in collaboration with the Watts College of Public Service and Community Solutions is hosting Working Assumptions' installation entitled Showing (work x family), a six-screen photography exhibition that debuts August 22 and will remain on the downtown campus throughout the fall semester.
Non-Profit Scarcity
Research shows that organizations with a strong infrastructure are more successful than those without[2].Therefore, the lack of this spending on infrastructure creates a large barrier to success and continuity of an organization. Infrastructure spending is investment in the physical structures, development of human capital, and the processes and capabilities of an organization. This type of spending can include buying computers and equipment, repairing facilities, or spending on professional development for staff.
ASU logo no photo
Arizona's Children and the State of the State
Nationally, 21 percent of children live in poverty with wide variation between states. The Kids Count Data Book ranks Arizona 43rd in the nation for economic well-being with one in four children living in poverty (1 per cent increase between 2010 and 2015). Two positive economic indicators, both nationally and for Arizona, were reductions in the number of children likely to grow up in families burdened by high housing costs and the percentage of children whose parents lack secure employment. Between 2010 and 2015, Arizona saw a 9 percentage point reduction on the first indicator - 43 percent in 2010 to 34 percent in 2015 - and a 5 percentage point reduction on the second indicator - from 35 percent in 2010 to 30 percent in 2015. The same trends were observed nationwide.
School Supply Assistance

With “back to school” already beginning in Arizona, and other states soon following, the purchase of new school supplies are at the top of parents’ minds. US News reports that parents will spend an average of $674 on school supplies this year, up from $630 last year. With 20.4% of Arizona’s children living below the poverty line where can families turn when purchasing school supplies is an impossibility?

The Kids in Need Foundation is a national organization dedicated to supporting poverty stricken children through classroom support. They do not provide direct support to individual families; however, they can provide a wealth of resources for families in need.

Locally, the Salvation Army, Adelante Healthcare, UFCW99, and the Boys and Girls Club, are hosting various assistance programs for school supplies this month. 

For an even more extensive list of organizations providing assistance, ABC15 has compiled a comprehensive list covering all of Arizona, and even more can be found on the A Day in the Life of a Mom blog. Additionally, websites like Eventbrite allow you to search keywords, like “free school supplies” in a specific city or region, with various local events featured.

The Impact of Child Separation
This separation of children from caregivers and their detention are in themselves harmful to the children’s well-being. Abrupt separation from a primary caregiver and prolonged detention can result in depression, anxiety, behavior problems, and developmental delays among other concerns. Separation and detention are especially harmful for younger children as they are more dependent on their caregivers and may not yet have developed mechanisms that would help them cope with adverse experiences.
The Benefits of Online Training

Written by: Jenna Panas 

When we think about online learning we typically think about a webinar where the presenter drones on about their PowerPoint presentation while we check our email, surf the internet, and do anything but pay attention to the information that we are ostensibly learning. Is it any wonder then that online learning for professional development is perceived as a short-cut, a less than approach when compared to the rigors of having to attend trainings in person.

However, this doesn’t have to be the case. Just as in person training can be dull and uninspiring, depending on the abilities of the trainer, online training is heavily dependent on good design. The internet is a visual medium – online training that has compelling infographics, learning stories, and photos is more appealing to a learner. Those designing trainings must emphasize finding or creating graphics that support the learning objectives, and utilize text to emphasis points. Rather than a physical instructor being the primary vehicle for transmission of information, graphics do the heavy lifting for good online learning.

10 Tips for Pool Safety

With temperatures rising and schools letting out for summer break, the urge to dive into the pool is intensifying. With the relaxation of poolside fun, comes the dangers of sunburn, dehydration and sadly drownings. From the first of the year to June 8th there have been 17 deaths in the Phoenix area related to water incidents. In order to enjoy the pool side here are 10 tips to keep you and your children safe in and around water.

Swapping Out Detention with Meditation

Educators and parents across the nation are taking notice of the “mindfulness” wave rushing over academic institutions.

 What is mindfulness?

Mindful.org defines mindfulness as “the basic human ability to be fully present, aware of where we are and what we’re doing, and not overly reactive or overwhelmed by what’s going on around us.”

Something as simple as noticing your breathing can be a challenging task in today’s society. The practice of mindfulness allows for an escape from the distracting, stressful, fast-moving world around us.

Mindfulness allows for a reprieve from outside trauma, an increase in social-emotional development, and improves problem-solving skills. As much as all these benefits aid adults they can also be beneficial to school-aged children.

Robert W. Coleman Elementary, in Baltimore, Maryland, saw mindfulness as a way to empower and support their students. At Coleman Elementary when students misbehave in class or the school yard, they are not sent detention or the principal’s office, they are sent to the school’s meditation room.

The meditation room is lovingly referred to as the “Mindful Moment Room.” Here students take a deep breath and are encouraged to talk about what led to their dismissal from the classroom. The staff members in the room then instruct the students to close their eyes and inhales and exhale deeply for a few moments until they are calm enough to return back to class.

Not only has meditation replaced detention, but it has also become an integral part of Robert W. Coleman Elementary school day. Each day starts and ends with a 15 minute guided mediation. And, although the implementation of mindfulness in the class room hasn’t removed hard ship or stress from children’s lives, it does provide a tool for coping with such difficulties.  

ASU Research- Social Emotional Well Being of Youth in Out of Home Care
Research: Social-emotional well-being among youth living in out-of-home care

The ASU Center for Child Well-Being is excited to announce their article Social-emotional well-being among youth living in out-of-home-care has been published in Elsevier.   Dr. Judy Krysik, Director of the ASU Center for Child Well-Being, and Dr. Cara Kelly, Researcher at the Center for Child Well-Being authored this article with Dr. Elizabeth K. Anthony, Associate Professor, ASU School of Social Work, who is also listed as the corresponding author of this research publication.  

Children of Incarcerated Parent's National Conference Partners with Renaissance Phoenix Downtown Hotel for 2nd Year

Attend the National Conference for Incarcerated Parents at the Renaissance Phoenix Downtown


Return attendees to the Children of Incarcerated Parent's National Conference will be pleased to learn the ASU Center for Child Well-Being has partnered once again with the Renaissance Phoenix Downtown Hotel to act as host for CIP 2019.

Based on our own experiences, as well as, all of the positive feedback from last year's conference attendees, it was a natural choice to return!

Registration for the conference is now open, and CIP has reserved a block of hotels with a $199/night rate.

Further details regarding the conference can be found below:

American Academy of Pediatrics Updates Policy on Spanking

The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), released an update today to its policy calling on parents to end spanking as a form of discipline.  The ASU Center for Child Well-Being supports this position based on multiple studies showing that hitting children increases their risks for physical aggression. We are pleased that how we as a society respond to children is changing in response to new information, similar to how we learn and adapt in other areas of our lives. There are many positive alternatives to spanking. Please, join us in advocating for an end to corporal punishment.  

The American Professional Society on the Abuse of Children (APSAC) has compiled suggestions on how everyone can work towards the prevention of child maltreatment and promote the well-being of children.  Their suggestions can be found here. 


Congratulations Dr. Kelly

Congratulations Dr. Cara Kelly


Congratulations to Cara Kelly on the successful defense of her dissertation on September 10th.
 The capstone of her Ph.D. Program examined the utility of Healthy Family Parenting Inventory(HFPI) to predict a family’s risk for future maltreatment.

Thanks for a successful 2017 National Title IV-E Roundtable Conference

May 30, 2017: Over 225 attendees, representing 35 states and 6 tribal nations, visited Phoenix, Arizona May 23rd through 25th to attend the 21st annual National Title IV-E Roundtable conference.

Attendees participated in four plenary sessions focused on: 1) Social Work Education & University Partnerships; 2) Research, Evaluation & Assessment; 3) Training & Workforce Development; and 4) Collaboration & Partnership. Twenty roundtable break-out sessions followed each plenary to allow participants to learn more about what state partners have had success with in each area, as well as to learn from challenges and opportunities. The afternoons of Day 1 & Day 2 provided skill-building opportunities with two national Title IV-E experts, Don Schmid and Carl Valentine, followed by opportunities for state & federal region action planning.

Read more here

Building demand for a Culture of #Children'sWellbeing

October 26-27, 2016: As a Network Partner of the Ashoka Changemakers Childwellbeing Initiative, we are so proud to have been included in the 2 day Build Event in Chicago to explore how to build demand for a culture of Children's Wellbeing.

Read more here

Arizona Ranks 49th in Health Benchmarks for Children

October 20, 2016: The 4th Annual Preventive Health Collaborative (PHC) Forum made the front page of the Phoenix New Times as their top story. Unfortunately, Arizona ranks 49th in children's health measures, but PHC has brought together amazing partners and speakers to address what we can do together to improve our ranking and improve the lives of children in Arizona. ASU's Center for Child Well-Being's Director, Dr. Judy Krysik was one of the featured speakers.

Read the full story

$1.4M grant to help child sex traffic victims

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Administration for Children, Youth and Families awarded the funding to Dominique Roe-Sepowitz (right) and Judy Krysik (left). Both are professors and researchers in the School of Social Work, part of the College of Public Programs at Arizona State University. The project will be a collaborative effort involving the ASU Office for Sex Trafficking Research Intervention, the ASU Center for Applied Behavioral Health Policy and the Arizona Department of Child Safety. 

Full Article

National Ethics Committee

Judy Krysik, associate professor and associate director in the School of Social Work, has been selected to serve on the National Ethics Committee of the National Association of Social Workers. Her term begins immediately and runs through June 2017.