Having trouble viewing this email? View it in your web browser

Welcome! Please enjoy the January edition of The Child & Family Guidance Center's monthly e-newsletter.

CFGC Compass Guide Logo

CFGC Staff Spotlight: Xiomara Lopez, Outpatient Clinician

Xiomara Lopez, Outpatient Clinician and staff spotlight for the month of January.

Xiomara Lopez, LMSW, is a clinician in CFGC's Outpatient Psychiatric Clinic for Children, working with children ages 5 to 18. Xiomara first joined The Child & Family Guidance Center as an intern in 2019, became a Care Coordinator a few months later and, in 2021, was hired as a clinician.

Read, in her own words, the passion she brings to her work and how her own life experience helps her relate to the challenges many of our CFGC clients face. 

What gets you excited about your position? And/or what do you find challenging? 

I think that for every clinician, what gets us excited about doing this job is seeing the impact we make on a micro, macro and mezzo level.  I work with kids that are having trouble at school, at home or in other social settings. I’m in the process of being fully certified as a trauma focused therapist and so I work with kids who have been through loss and other events that may impact their everyday life. Knowing that the work I do can make a difference is what makes me want to do this job/service every day.

What led you to become a Social Worker?  

I used to work in a school setting. I would be the one to refer the kids to therapy and learned very quickly the work therapists do with kids.  I wanted to be on the other side and be able to do the one-to-one work with kids. I then saw a billboard on the road for the Master’s program at Fairfield University and decided to apply. I wish someone told me “you can do whatever your heart tells you.” I am a very emotional person so people didn’t really think I could do this work. But, on the contrary, the emotions, my heart and the passion I put into this work is what pushed me to complete the program and all the requirements I needed to graduate. I fortunately completed the program in two years and graduated in June 2021.

How does your background inform how you work with clients?  

 I was born in El Salvador. I came to the U.S. when I was 13 years old. My parents got divorced shortly after due to family conflicts. My mom then raised my 2 sisters and I while worked two to three jobs at a time. I see this same story in my work with kids. Having similar stories allows me to connect with kids and their families. I can empathize with kids having trouble adjusting to changes, trouble at school or at home, trouble expressing their thoughts and emotions and trouble accepting help or admitting that we need help sometimes.

It can be a stressful job. How do you take care of yourself?  

I love taking walks, I love watching movies or shows, I love reading at night and love spending quality time with family and friends. I also allow myself to have lazy days when I need to decompress.

 What would you say to someone thinking about becoming a therapist?   

I wish to tell that future therapist that although burnout does exist, that it is also true that this service is very rewarding on a personal level. It is not an easy road for sure but as my mother always says, “take it little by little mija.”  

Short or long-term goal? 

My short term goal is to pass my state licensing exam and to complete my Trauma Treatment certification. Long term goal is to start my own practice. 

MCIS goes 24/7: Expanded crisis support for youth and families

The expanded MCIS team stands on the Broad Street Steps.

CFGC’s Mobile Crisis Intervention Services (MCIS) is starting 2023 with exciting news. MCIS, which provides rapid community response to calls of children and youth in mental or emotional distress is now available 24/7 — including nights and weekends. This significant program expansion launched this month, funded through the state of Connecticut's Department of Children and Families. 

While this expansion is up and running today, it took months of preparation to recruit, hire and train MCIS for this major change. Special thanks to CFGC's Behavioral Health Unit Director Kenneth Lacilla and Program Director Sylvadra Ellis (pictured front and center in the photo above) who have lead this effort.

On Dec. 5, the MCIS team members had a chance to connect with the new overnight team of clinicians and hand out personalized team fleeces. We also took a moment for a selfie at our favorite backdrop near the office: the Broad Street Steps.

All of us at CFGC are so proud of this program’s growth and grateful to every member of this team. 

Please know: Help is always available. If your child is out of control and/or in crisis, call Connecticut’s 2-1-1 line to be connected to a mobile clinician.


In Other CFGC News...

Fairfield County's Giving Day returns February 23! Click the image to visit our profile

Save the Date!

It's almost time for a community-wide day of generosity and impact. Fairfield County's Giving Day is back on February 23. Will you help us reach our $10,000 goal and compete for other grant prizes from Fairfield County's Community Foundation?

Here's how:

Share and share alike. Online days of giving are successful because of our own networks. Help us grow our network by sharing our messaging and page with friends. 

Be socially (media) active. Use your social media networks: post on Facebook, tweet about Fairfield County's Giving Day, and share your passion for CFGC's work. 

Become a fundraising champion. Everyone loves a champion, including us! We really need fundraising champions to help drive people to our Fairfield County's Giving Day profile on February 23. Contact Kate for more information on how to become a fundraising champion!

Scenes of generosity over the holidays

A bright holiday season

“Generosity is love in action.”

Our CFGC community shows up, year-round, to support our work with children and families but there is something special about the holiday season. 

The donations to our annual fund, the toy drives, special deliveries and the small and large acts of generosity simply blow us away. 

To every donor: Thank you - you are amazing! 

It is inspiring to have a front row seat to this kind of goodness.  The work we do — helping kids and their families find healing, hope, and build resiliency — is not possible without your support.

In addition to raising the dollars that keep our mental health and family services going, the toys, gift cards and clothing donations ensured our families most in need had a brighter and more joyful season. 

Click here to watch some scenes of true generosity and kindness. 


Questions? Comments? Please email Director of Development & Communications Kate Czaplinski at kczaplinski@cfguidance.org.


Contact Us

info@cfguidance.org | 203-394-6529

Unsubscribe or Manage Your Preferences