Claudia's Speaking Topics

Keynotes & Standup:

Standup (20 -90 minutes) 

     Recently Claudia has had invitations to provide standup comedy routines at foster and adoption events as well as women's events.  Connecting best with these two groups, she delivers a message of hope  and healing, while keeping the audience in tears of laughter.

12 Survival Tips Learned from Parenting 12 Children  (45 - 120 min)

     Shared from the perspective of a foster/adoptive parent, this presentation articulates twelve practical ways that parents can respond to the behaviors of abused and neglected children in healthy ways. The presentation focuses on the need for parents to change themselves as opposed to attempting to “fix the kids.”  Participants leave feeling motivated and empowered to make a difference in the lives of children by changing themselves. (Also available as a seminar).

 

Parenting with Humor (45-90 min)

      The need for a sense of humor in being caregivers to children with difficult issues is clearly presented from the perspective of an adoptive parent.  Words like self-differentiation and disengagement are interwoven with stories that show families how they can discover moments of joy in the midst of the mayhem.  (Also available as a seminar).

 

Disruption Prevention (45-120 min)

      Geared toward professionals, this keynote teaches professionals how to prepare parents to make a lifetime commitment to a child or children.  Strategies for parenting difficult children are shared with helpful hints on how to pass those techniques and attitudes on to parents (Also available as a seminar.)

Seminars:

The Myths of Matching (90 -120 min)

       A passionate presentation that includes the urgency of matching and placing children quickly by dismissing many of the misconceptions workers have about the “perfect match.”  This presentation has been developing for seven years and is delivered from the perspective of an adoption matching specialist who has matched over 500 children who have been placed in permanent homes in those past 7 years.

 

The Methods of Matching (90-120 min) 

     Complete with handouts, checklists, and matching tools, this presentation provides hands on activities that demonstrate how worker can select a family for a child or sibling group in three weeks.

 

Large Families:  A Great Resource for Waiting Children (75-90 min)

      Twenty reasons why many kids from the system fit well in large experienced families.  Presented by a parent of twelve after consulting with many parents of even more children, this presentation has been developed and tweaked over a seven year period.

 

Developmental Stages in Adopted Children (75-90 min)  

      Based on Erickson’s stages of development, a presentation that assumes that a child, regardless of their chronological age, begins their journey of emotional development at placement.  Realistic expectations for behavior at each stage are presented.

 

Transitioning Children from Residential Treatment (60-75 min) 

      This presentation offers helpful advice for workers as to how to help families prepare to welcome a child into their home who has been in a residential placement.  Presented from both the perspective of an adoption worker making placements and a parent who has adopted out of an RTC, as well as had adopted children in and out of facilities, much practical advice is given.

 

The Case File as a Life Book  (60 -90 min)

      Teaching workers from removal how to develop a case file that will not only provide prospective  adoptive parents with a balanced view of the child, but which would allow the child to return to DFPS after they are adults and read a more humane description of their childhood.

 

Foster Parents as Road Blocks to Permanency:   (75-90 min)  

      Helping workers learn how to deal with foster parents asking them the hard questions about adoption and the future of children and teens in Foster Care.  

 

Square Peg:  Round Hole (90 -120 min) 

     Addressing the discrepancy between the kind of kids that are available for adoption and the kind of kids that families hope to adopt.  The goal of the presentation is to encourage workers to have a paradigm shift so that we can find families for the kids that are available.

 

Blogging down the Super Highway of Adoption (60 -75 min) 

      Use the latest technologies to recruit, prepare, match and support families throughout the process of adopting children from foster care.  Email bursts, electronic matching, Powerpoint presentations of families to workers and supervisors, and blogs are being used to provide services to families to help them in their journey through pre-adoption preparation and post-adoption permanence.   The information is presented from the unique perspective of a parent and a professional who has used these tools. 

 

The Teen Attachment Cycle (60 -75 min) 

      Most adoption professionals and parents have studied and understand the infant attachment cycle.  However, they may not recognize it in adopted or foster teens.  A presentation of how the cycle plays itself out among teenagers and the strategies parents need to guide teens toward attachment.

Claudia Fletcher and her husband are the adoptive parents of 12 children, 10 adopted from the U.S. foster care system and two from a  Guatemalan orphanage.  She is the Chief Program Officer at Patrick Henry Family Services  and has previously served as Reiongal Direcor fo Bethany Christian Services and a matching specialist for for the Adopt America Network.  Claudia is a former college administrator who has a B.A. in Behavioral Science and an M.Ed in Guidance and Counseling.  She has spoken nationally about adoption issues and has had many articles published relating to permanency for children and supporting adoptive parents.