Jill Fox Center for Hope Opens Doors with Ribbon Cutting

Wednesday, May 4 was a great day in Baltimore. LifeBridge Health’s new Jill Fox Center for Hope officially opened with a ribbon cutting event attended by many in the community including LifeBridge Health leadership, elected officials, community leaders, friends of Center for Hope and of course Manny our Center for Hope facility dog.

The program included remarks by Dan Blum, president of Sinai Hospital and Grace Medical Center and senior vice president at LifeBridge Health who welcomed everyone and explained why we were gathered. Adam Rosenberg, LifeBridge Health vice president of Violence Intervention and Prevention and executive director of Center for Hope thanked the many, many individuals and organizations who made this day possible. Adam gave some background on what Center for Hope does and why it is such an important player in the health and welfare of the Baltimore community.

“We have reached a new dawn in victim advocacy,” said Adam Rosenberg. “No one in the nation is doing the work that we are doing the way we are doing it. This is a vision that has been long in the making and is the result of hard work by many.”

Shantay Jackson, director of the Mayor’s Office of Neighborhood Safety and Engagement spoke on behalf of Mayor Scott about the importance of collaboration. Steven Johnson, president of Pimlico Terrace Association, was engaging and energetic as he explained to the crowd the importance of hope. And Denielle “Denny” Randall, manager of PAAVE (Pathways to Advocacy Against Violence Every day) spoke eloquently on behalf of a Center for Hope client. Following remarks, the ribbon was cut – several times – to allow us to celebrate all who helped get Center for Hope to this moment.

Attendees took tours of the building and refreshments were served. Everyone left the event smiling and feeling good about the important and meaningful work being done at Center for Hope in this brand new state-of-the-art building.

Honoring the Memory of Jill Fox

The LifeBridge Health Center for Hope building was named the Jill Fox Center for Hope to honor the memory of Jill Fox, a 19-year old college student who died from an unexpected illness in 1960. This is made possible by two significant gifts given to Center for Hope – one from the Jill Fox Memorial Fund, Inc., a supporting foundation of The Associated: Jewish Community Federation of Baltimore, Inc. and the other is an Endowment Gift generously given by Jill’s family, Shirley F. Scholder, Karen L. Scholder, Susan Scholder Smith and David M. Scholder, in memory of Jill and Shirley’s parents Lou and Dorothy Fox. The Endowment Gift will establish the Dorothy N. and Louis J. Fox Client Assistance Endowment Fund to provide therapeutic mental health services, support groups, critical basic living needs and program supplies for Center for Hope survivors of violence and clients.

“We are grateful to Jill’s family for believing in the work that we do at Center for Hope and for honoring her memory and her parents’ memory with these two significant gifts,” said Adam Rosenberg, LifeBridge Health vice president of Violence Intervention and Prevention and executive director of Center for Hope. “For more than 60 years, Jill’s memory has served as a blessing not only to her family but to the thousands of individuals who have been the recipients of grants from the Fox Memorial Fund. Her legacy will continue to live through the families that benefit from this generosity.”

The Jill Fox Center for Hope is much more than a building; it will provide spaces and vital resources so children and families can focus on their health and well-being with the support of a dedicated team of health system professionals who can oversee trauma response programming that ranges from children to seniors.

If you would like to support the Jill Fox Center for Hope, we invite you to be part of the Community Campaign, which will provide funding for playground, technology and other building equipment. 

Donor Profile: Honoring the Legacy of Isabelle Krieger

An interview with Betsy Krieger and Jeanie Kahn.

Isabelle Krieger’s legacy in Baltimore is one of dedication, generosity and compassion. For many years prior to her death in 1989, she volunteered her time at Sinai Hospital’s Emergency Room. In honor of Mrs. Krieger’s dedication to LifeBridge Health, Jeanie Kahn and Betsy Krieger, her daughters, have made a generous gift to the new Center for Hope building and are naming the Child Life Room in her memory. LifeBridge Health Development sat down with Jeanie and Betsy to learn more about their mother’s impact and legacy.

Q: What was Mrs. Krieger’s involvement with LifeBridge Health?

Mom volunteered in the ER waiting room. She loved it. She came home and told us about the children she interacted with. Helping there gave her a lot and she gave so much—especially to the children. -Jeanie Kahn

Q: What made you decide to give in your mother’s name to Center for Hope?

She would want kids who have not had the easiest life to be well taken care of and receive the support that they need in the most welcoming environment possible. -Betsy Krieger

Q: Aside from her dedication to helping those in need in the Baltimore region, what did Mrs. Krieger love the most?

She loved to garden. She had beautiful gardens and was very passionate about that. -Betsy Krieger

She was constantly knitting clothes for us and her grandkids and she knitted hats for babies in the NICU at Sinai Hospital. The hats were multi-colored and could be worn by all the babies. -Jeanie Kahn

When she was in the hospital dying, I would visit her with my 6-month-old daughter, and she lit up seeing her newest grandchild. She loved being around babies and her grandchildren. -Betsy Krieger

Absolutely. Mom would visit us in Virginia after my first child was born. One of those times, my son was fussy and mom picked him up, laid him on her shoulder and he just quieted down. She had a magical touch with babies, she just knew instinctively what to do and how to make the situation better. -Jeanie Kahn

Thank you to Betsy Krieger and Jeanie Kahn for their generous gift in honor of their mother, Isabelle Krieger.

If you would like to make a donation to the Center for Hope Community Campaign* or have any questions about how to support Center for Hope programs, email Hilary Corley at hcorley@lifebridgehealth.org or call 410-369-4701.

*Funds from the Center for Hope Community Campaign will be used for playground and other Center for Hope building equipment.

Cheers for Peers

Congratulations to this month’s Cheers for Peers winner Joletta “Jo” Anderson who truly exemplifies the term team player! Jo regularly goes above and beyond to help Center for Hope clients, she brings positive attention to the LifeBridge Health community and she is a perfect example of what it means to CARE BRAVELY.

Late last year, Jo stepped up in a big way for the elder abuse department. During the holidays, Jo was scheduled to be off the week between Christmas and New Year’s when her supervisor suddenly became ill with COVID. Jo stepped in and stepped up to help. She showed what it means to have dedication to her clients and her department. Thanks, Jo, for your effort and your support – we could not have done it without you!

The project we would like to recognize this month is the Red Sand Project which brings awareness to the gaps in knowledge in and the prevalence of human trafficking and exploitation. Cities across the country participated in this day of awareness on January 11, and Center for Hope’s anti-trafficking and exploitation program led these efforts in Baltimore City.

The Red Sand Project event at Center for Hope created opportunities for people to question, connect and take action against vulnerabilities that can lead to human trafficking and exploitation. Participants in the project came together to pour symbolic red sand outside of Center for Hope as a visual representation of trauma as they reflected on the experiences of human trafficking and exploitation survivors and created dialogue (in both physical and virtual spaces) on ways to further advance the efforts to support those surviving lived experiences and those who are often forgotten about. Thank you to the anti-trafficking and exploitation team for shining a light on this important issue!

Center for Hope Leading Innovations in Forensic Interviewing

Creating A National Model

Over the last decade, Crimson Barocca has led Center for Hope’s highly effective forensic interview (FI) team. During her tenure, the team expanded forensic interviewing to assist not only victims of sexual abuse but also child physical abuse victims, victims of sex trafficking, witnesses to domestic violence, victims of community violence and witnesses to violent crime and homicide. As the Center has evolved, the FI team’s skill and expertise has grown along with its needs for increased training.

At the same time, the field of research around child abuse and forensic interviewing expanded, and the team recognized the need for changes to the existing FI model. In 2019 the FI team applied their experiences to the creation of a new formalized tool, Forensic Interview Toolbox (FIT). This model has been recognized by National Children’s Alliance (NCA) as one of its approved forensic interview protocols required by accredited Children’s Advocacy Centers (CAC) nationwide.

Innovations During COVID

During the COVID-19 pandemic and quarantine, the forensic interview team was adept and innovative. They quickly responded to the needs of child victims and investigating agencies in Baltimore and provided training and expertise to the national community of forensic interviewers. Center for Hope’s forensic interview team was the first in the nation to create a CAC tele-forensic interviewing (tele-FI) model that has been since replicated across the county.

Additionally, Center for Hope’s FIT course was the first to immediately transform training into a successful virtual learning program accessible to any interviewer across the nation while safely in quarantine. Through the pandemic of 2020 and 2021, 10 FIT courses have been conducted virtually, including three in Spanish, supporting a total of 133 professional participants.

The Future of Forensic Interviewing

In 2020, the formalization of the research-side of the forensic interview training was named and combined with the education programming to become the Forensic Interview Research and Education (FIRE) program. FIRE was created to meet the increased interest in and need for tools and resources that meet the needs of child victims, support the professionals charged with protecting them and provide legally defensible evidenced-based practices integral to forensic interviewing. FIRE seeks to strengthen the relationship between forensic interview research and practice in a continuous and timely manner.

Center for Hope’s FIRE team is currently working to expand the program. Through implementing a marketing and strategic plan as well as launching a new website with resources and virtual and in person trainings, the FIRE team hopes to reach even more professionals in the field who would benefit from forensic interview trainings. Center for Hope is proud of the work that Crimson and her team have done to get to this point. We eagerly anticipate what comes next in this team’s efforts to better support victims of abuse.

To learn more and view upcoming forensic interview training opportunities, click here or contact Forensic Interview Research & Education Coordinator Catie Ladas at  CFHFI@lifebridgehealth.org.

Faces of Hope: Dr. Wendy Lane

March 30 is Doctors Day, so it is only appropriate that this month we shine a light on the medical team that we are so grateful to have at Center for Hope!

Dr. Wendy Lane has been the medical director at Center for Hope since 2015. She oversees a small, mighty staff including Dr. Michelle Chudow and two nurse practitioners. Center for Hope’s affiliation with LifeBridge Health is a great benefit to Dr. Lane and her team. But even before Center for Hope joined LifeBridge Health, the medical program has been fortunate to have had a long-standing partnership with the Department of Pediatrics at Sinai Hospital. According to Dr. Lane, that partnership has been beneficial because it has “enabled us to better serve our patients through access to medications, billing code expertise and quality improvement initiatives.”

Now that all violence intervention and prevention programs, including the child advocacy center, domestic violence, elder justice and community violence are under one roof at Center for Hope, the medical team can better support addressing interpersonal and community violence across the lifespan. This seamless connectivity has enabled Center for Hope’s medical team to advocate together with the LifeBridge Health team and learn from one another. Dr. Lane adds that her team has also benefitted from the larger voice that LifeBridge Health has in advocating for the work of programs that address violence and improve wellbeing.

In addition to her work at Center for Hope, Dr. Lane plays an integral role in the CHAMP program of Maryland which provides training and peer review to doctors and nurses around the state that conduct medical exams for children who have been abused or neglected. “My work with CHAMP has enhanced my knowledge of exam findings and clinical management through state-wide peer review,” says Dr. Lane. “I have also learned a lot about how other CAC and hospital-based programs are run, and how efforts and initiatives elsewhere can be implemented at Center for Hope to improve our services.” When Center for Hope moves into its new home later this Spring, we will continue to increase coordination of consultation and education services with the LifeBridge Health system and its affiliated pediatric staff. Center for Hope continues to make advancements in the treatment of its young clients, in no small part thanks to the efforts of Dr. Lane and her team.

Keeping Kids Safe

LifeBridge Health’s Center for Hope team members were in Annapolis on Wednesday, March 1 to show support for House Bill 788 which would establish the Child Safe Zone Program in the Department of Natural Resources. This program will improve the perception and reality of public safety in state and local parks. Designating state and local parks as “Child Safe Zones” communicates to the public that parks are safe community gathering spaces, creating safe havens and refuge for children.

Thank you to the bill’s sponsors Senator Shelly Hettleman and Delegate Dana Stein. Also, we appreciate the support of Senator Charles E. Sydnor III, Delegate Marlon Amprey, and Delegate Sandy Rosenberg.

In living up to LifeBridge Health’s purpose statement of “Caring for Our Communities Together,” we are committed to supporting legislation that will keep kids safe and benefit our communities. From creating child safe zones in parks and supporting violence intervention services, to working to improve under-representation by persons of colors in behavioral health services, we are proud to #CareBravely for our communities.

Cheers for Peers

Congratulations to Ja’Ara “Jae” McCoy who is the Center for Hope Employee of the Month. Jae is being recognized for her exemplary work as a team player on the anti-trafficking and exploitation team who goes above and beyond the duties of her job. According to her nomination supervisor, Jae works tirelessly for her clients, not stopping at anything to ensure they get the support, resources and help they need to get on a better path to healing.

Jae recently filled in on a very difficult case where she had minimal information on the process. She did so willingly and saw the client through to completion. Jae regularly demonstrates LifeBridge Health Spirit Values by bringing positive attention to the Center for Hope AT&E team. Way to go Jae!

The Center for Hope Capital Campaign is this month’s project winner. Led by Julie Cox, Joel Simon and Hilary Corley, the entire development team has worked hard to meet the goal of the campaign. Center for Hope Executive Director Adam Rosenberg recently pointed out that as we near the end of the Campaign, it is important to recognize the exemplary efforts of the LifeBridge Health development team for reaching and exceeding campaign goals. They introduced new donors to Center for Hope and have closed significant, magnanimous gifts. Their work is truly worthy of special recognition and we are all very grateful!

Save the Date: Community Block Party

Mark your calendars now for an exciting Center for Hope opening event in Spring 2022! Join us at our Community Block Party for the Greater Baltimore community as we celebrate the opening of our new building on Sunday, May 15 at 5400 Preakness Way. We will have activities all day, and we hope you can come by and say hello! We will share more details in the upcoming months. Stay tuned!