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Powell works with foster children, families

May 9, 2014

By Donna Summerall

The West Point Civitan Luncheon Club welcomed special guest Ardrana Powell, intensive outpatient therapist with Mississippi Children’s Home Services, to inform members about mental health services for foster children during the club’s meeting Wednesday at North Mississippi Medical Center Education Room in West Point.
“I deal with crisis,” Powell said. “Families who take in foster children usually know they have a rough road ahead. I’m called to evaluate the child and the home when problems arise.”
Powell said she has worked with MCHS since 2005, helping children with emotional and mental health issues. She has a masters degree in Counseling from the University of West Alabama.
She said the main goal is to keep the child in the foster home and not have to check them into a hospital or mental health facility. She is trained to speak with the parents alone first, the child alone and then the family to determine the problem and find a suitable solution. If there are signs of abuse or neglect, she arranges for the child to be removed from the environment immediately.
“We are partners with Sally Kate Winters Family Services,” Powell said. “We know the facility to be the best and safest place for children while an investigation into an alleged claim of abuse or neglect is ongoing. I want the best for children in foster care.”
When a question was posed by Alvin Quinn, member of the Civitan Club, about how many families she works with, Powell said at least 15 a month.
Children with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder and other behavioral issues are often evaluated to determine whether medication is the best option or some other form of therapy or treatment by the MCHS therapist, according to Powell.

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