We all need rest to function well in each area of our lives. Sleep, exercise, video games and spending time with loved ones are a few examples of activities commonly used to recharge. But sometimes, what you think is a break is actually a form of escapism that saps your time and energy. CHRIS 180 clinical experts Chris Haider-Bardill, LPC, CPCS, and Rob Collins, LCSW, LSSGB, discussed escapism and its role in our lives during a Lunchtime Live episode in May 2021.   What is escapism? Typically, escapism involves engaging in an activity to...

Often when the term Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) is used, it is associated with members of the military, especially war veterans. As times change and people become more familiar with trauma and its impact on each of our lives, we are starting to recognize just how the stress connected to past and present events impacts our daily lives. How does PTSD affect the brain? PTSD is often accompanied by a significant psychological shock. First, it is essential to understand that considerable stress and trauma, when experienced or witnessed, puts the brain in...

Michelle’s Story When Michelle lost her housing, a friend told her about CHRIS 180 and our Drop-In Center. The Drop-In Center provides a range of free services for youth ages 16-24 who are experiencing homelessness. These services include meals, life coaching, job and housing assistance and walk-in therapy sessions. But Michelle was hesitant. She had just come out as a trans woman and worried about reaching out for help and being met with judgment. However, when Michelle arrived at the Drop-In Center for the first time, she was surrounded by a welcoming...

Children are small people with very big emotions. Although they can show you what they are feeling, most children have yet to attach a name to their feelings and have not learned healthy ways of dealing with their emotions. As children grow, they face many challenges and obstacles. Therefore, it is important to promote healthy social and emotional development by helping children identify and name their feelings, and sharing methods to help them cope effectively.   Why should I promote emotional awareness in my child early?  Promoting early emotional awareness helps your child...

For Johnny Brown, Fatherhood Session Coordinator at CHRIS 180’s Cure Violence Atlanta program, helping fathers is a calling. “All of us are on this journey of being fathers,” Johnny shared. “We work with participants to learn the life skills to be able to work, stay out of trouble and start talking about what it takes to be a good parent. When we help them show up in their child’s life, we are breaking the cycle of generational violence.” Every Monday from 11:00 A.M. – 1:00 P.M. at the Cure Violence Atlanta office,...

On June 8, 1981, a new nonprofit organization named Georgia CHARLEE opened its doors to fill gaps in the foster care system. Georgia CHARLEE – now known as CHRIS 180 – was organized by a purpose-driven group of women from The Junior League of Atlanta, Inc. (JLA), who saw a need for a safe, stable, environment for youth in foster care. “At the time, we were so concerned about foster children who were literally getting tossed around from home to home,” said JLA Past President Ann Cramer, who serves on CHRIS...

Valancia Abdullah considers it her calling to care for youth who some may think of as “challenged.” After working with special needs students at Atlanta Public Schools, in 2000, she joined CHRIS 180’s foster care program. She serves as a Resident Assistant. The kids affectionately refer to her as Ms. Val. “The RA to me is just like being a mom in care: we have to make sure their needs are met,” Abdullah shared. “They look up to us. They’re learning from us. Kids who are grown now have come back...

We stand with our Asian American colleagues, partners, clients and all affected in the wake of the horrific mass shootings in Atlanta and Acworth. This act of terrorism has produced additional anxiety and unease in the AAPI (Asian American Pacific Islander) community, which has been targeted by acts of racism and xenophobia since the beginning of the pandemic. As a trauma-informed organization, we know that words matter, and we all must call out bigotry, hate and white supremacy. CHRIS 180 is committed to being a safe space for those who are dealing with...

Did you know that children are now seen as the silent victims of the opioid epidemic? CHRIS 180’s HERO Program (Helping Restore Children and Families Affected by the Opioid Epidemic), was created to provide direct services, psychoeducational training and a community coalition aimed at expanding awareness and advocacy for these silent victims.  The program is funded by a grant awarded to CHRIS 180 by the Office of Victims of Crime (OVC). The funding comes from settlements between the Department of Justice (DOJ) and pharmaceutical companies around misleading claims related to...

The beginning of the year is full of traditions, even during a pandemic. From New Year’s Day, the MLK Holiday Weekend, and just a few weeks later, February kicks off a month-long celebration honoring Black History. The commemoration allows us to pause, acknowledge and revisit the achievements of African Americans throughout history. Many of these achievements still go unspoken in the classroom and in the home. The movement to celebrate Black History was designed to acknowledge the contributions of Black Americans, reverse negative stereotypes, and the systemic exclusion of people of...