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Family Forward Advocacy CT

Parenting Through Trauma?

~ ~ ~

Advocate for Change.

Who We Are

We Are Community

Our team of moms and dads, parents with lived experience and purpose, know how hard it is to parent through trauma and navigate child-serving systems. We Know that raising typical kids and keeping a home while working is one thing, but add a complex need child to the mix and it can be chaotic and exhausting, isolating, overwhelming, and even dangerous.


Our Family Forward team can help you become more skilled and organized, and more effective so you can be the exceptional therapeutic parent and advocate you know you are and want to be. We provide a variety of services and training to help you be more effective in your parenting, a more resourceful advocate, more organized and calm in your day, and more present for your family. We also provide public policy advocacy training for those who want to "fix" the ill-prepared state systems you've encountered along your journey.

Let us help you be even more AWESOME and BRAVE than you already are! 

Our Mission

FFACT is a 501(c)(3) organization dedicated to supporting families raising children with early developmental trauma (EDT), attachment disruption, and those formed through adoption. FFACT develops parent partnerships and strengthens family integrity practices across child-serving systems. We build awareness of Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) and the impact they have on children and their families, and we empower the voices of parents committed to both parenting thru trauma and advocating for change.

Parents Parenting Thru Trauma know how hard and often dangerous it can be to support, contain, and keep traumatized kids safe. If you found us, you know what that journey feels like. Our mission includes building you up, giving you tools, and making sure you know you are not alone.

Our Vision

FFACT was created by parents for parents parenting thru trauma; to support family integrity and reform ill-informed public policy. Our vision is to:

  • build awareness about early childhood trauma impact through direct service advocacy, social media campaigns, PR, and by generating feature stories
  • provide parent mentoring, coaching, and parenting strategies for bonding and safety
  • Offer a framework to support parents who desire to lead public policy change
  • educate the general public on the need for trauma competent services for kids and the experience of their parents
  • circulate information and connect parents in the trenches thru gatherings & networking
  • inform public policy to ensure respectful, responsive and trauma-competent services and providers are accessible to all
  • grow a collective parent voice informing change across the country

'19 Meeting w/ CT DCF Commissioner, Vannessa Dorantes

Reshaping Voluntary Services through Parent Voice

FFACT Co-Founders

Maureen O'Neill-Davis & Cheryl Brown

These two forever moms are a fierce duo. They met by chance while advocating for a common purpose. They lead parallel lives - ten years apart. Both adopted sibling groups with complex trauma histories and attachment disruption-rooted behaviors. Both saw a need to offer support to parents on similar paths AND reform the antiquated child welfare and ill-prepared Children's Behavioral Health Care systems they encountered. These systems failed them and their struggling kids putting everyone at risk. Their efforts spawned real reform in Connecticut. And together with a national partner, Family Forward Foundation, their efforts helped craft national foster care finance reform legislation.

Learn More

Support Our Policy Reform Work

Connecticut Special Act 17-6

Study Voluntary Admission to DCF Task Force

In 2017, FFACT was the energy behind CT's SA 17-6 An Act Establishing a Task Force to Study Voluntary Admission to the DCF. Although the Task Force never convened, focus on the issue of trading custody for care shifted minds. Trading custody (and decision-making authority by way of a neglect petition) to access complex need care through both voluntary (coerced) and involuntary (court-ordered) process, harms kids and destroys families. Our lobby efforts and generated media exposure kept this practice in the public eye leading to change. 

CT's Department of Children and Families shifted its Voluntary Services Program out of its core services and "parent policing" model of family engagement. It is now administered by Beacon Health Options as Voluntary Care Management and informed by a "How can we help?" approach.

Learn more at Voluntary Care Management 

Support our state advocacy work.

Family First Prevention Services Act

Federal Legislation Passed Feb. 2018

The first foster care financing bill in over 20-years, the FFPSA aims to support family integrity, strengthen families and kinship placements, and prevent kids at risk of child welfare involvement from going into foster care. Mental health care access is one of those areas of focus. States are currently developing implementation plans, strategies, and service delivery array to comply with this law.

Learn  more about targetted outcomes at:

Family Forst Prevention Services Act - Fact Sheet

Support our national advocacy work.

       U.S. Capitol, Washington, D.C.