If you're looking for the Minnesota Organization on Fetal Alcohol Syndrome (MOFAS) you have come to the right place. We have some exciting news about our organization. We have a new name! MOFAS has officially been renamed Proof Alliance. Our mission remains the same: to prevent prenatal alcohol exposure and to improve the quality of life for people living with fetal alcohol spectrum disorders (FASD).
We now have the proof that prenatal alcohol exposure is a leading cause of brain injury in children. We have the proof that FASD is 100% preventable and people living with an FASD can reach 100% of their potential.
We seek to build powerful alliances with people with an FASD, their families, legislators, experts in the field, new partners, and community members to bring awareness, research, and services to this field.
Proof Alliance is rebranding, expanding, and we're moving! We have a new logo, website, and prevention campaign to help change the norms around drinking during pregnancy. And in May 2019 we will be moving to a stand-alone building. Proof Alliance commits to the people of Minnesota and we will continue to develop transformative programs to help Minnesotans impacted by FASD.
New in the MOFAS World
FASD Community Loses Longtime Volunteer, Educator and Advocate
The entire FASD community is feeling a huge loss with the death of Brad Wing. Many people knew Brad for his relentless energy, deep commitment and huge heart for children with Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders. Brad was instrumental in many innovative education programs for children with FASD including the District 287 SAFE (Students Addressing FASD through Education) Program. SAFE became a place where students with an FASD were identified, supported, and valued. Through Brad’s leadership this program blossomed to serve children with FASD challenges. Other school districts sought Brad out to help initiate better programming for their own students on the spectrum.
Brad was a lifelong educator, and upon his retirement dedicated countless hours to MOFAS as a trainer and school consultant. Over the years Brad served on many committees and task forces, and did it all to help create opportunities and improve outcomes for children with an FASD. Brad engaged MOFAS and other collaborative partners in the FASD field with respect and humor, and an unwavering belief that everyone deserved a happy, productive, fulfilling life. One parent echoes what so many families have said about Brad, “When I thought it was hopeless, Brad gave our family hope.” Our deepest sympathy to Brad’s wife and best friend Jan, his cherished children and grandchildren. A memorial service will be held at a later date. Details will be included in the next E-newsletter.
Brad’s commitment to the field of FASD continues. He and his wife Jan have requested all memorials be directed to MOFAS in celebration of Brad’s life. Please send to MOFAS, Brad Wing Memorial Fund, 2233 University Avenue W, Suite 395, St. Paul, MN 55114. For more information please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Last week more than 400 attendees from Minnesota, Canada, and six other states convened at the Minneapolis Marriott NW in Brooklyn Park, MN for the 2nd Annual FASD matters conference. This year’s theme was exploring the spectrum and I have reflected on the inspiring day and a half event knowing many individuals left the conference with greater enthusiasm, renewed hopes, and new connections.
My Own Stigma About FASD
First I want to say thank you to the staff at MOFAS, the excellent presenters, the engaged professionals, and the wonderful families that helped make this year’s conference such a great experience. I learned so much and met so many great people and during the conference I think I discovered some of my own stigma about FASD.
My Teenage Life with an FASD
I love to share my opinion on how I feel about certain things, how I feel personally about FASD and how it affects me. I think that people should know more about it in general. There are so many people that know nothing about it, never heard of it or may know a little about it or event don’t care.
11th Annual MOFAS Benefit
Join us Sunday, April 6, 2014 for a wonderful reception at Graves 601 Hotel, Minneapolis. After the reception we will all head over to the Orpheum Theater to see the Tony-Award winning play ONCE. Purchase your tickets between now and December 31, 2013 and you will receive a 5% discount (Use promo code ONCE when making purchase).
Grant for American Indian Communities
Applications are due this Friday, November 22, by 5PM. MOFAS is awarding grants up to $60,000 per agency to fund programs in MN that are specific to the American Indian communities.
Strategies for Working with Young Adults with an FASD- St. Paul
November 26, 1-3PM
Barb Clark, FRC, will present FASD information to educators at the Next Step Transition Program.
Student Presentation- St. Paul
December 7, 10-11AM
Student presentation on the effects of alcohol prenatal to age 8.
FASD Basics- Fond du Lac
December 5, 8:30AM-12:30PM
Learn the basics about FASD during a half day training.
How to Ask the Tough Questions- Fond du Lac
December 6, 8:30AM-12:30PM
A half day training to help identify the impact of alcohol and drug exposure on women and young children. Strategies for discussion about alcohol use during pregnancy, diagnostic process, and resources to support those living with the consequences of prenatal alcohol exposure.
FASD and the Impact on Law and Policing- Webinar
December 10, 12-1PM
David Boulding is a practicing attorney and has written extensively about Fetal Alcohol and the Law, and spoken to police forces and other audiences in the United States, Canada, Australia and the Philippines. David’s presentation will focus on a clinical and working analysis of defining Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders. He will also discuss how to identify an individual with an FASD and how lawyers, judges, police, probation, and corrections can better understand the consequences of the disorder and the ethical issues raised by this preventable disorder. He will also provide some practical solutions and pointers to a complex problem.
Trauma and the Developing Brain- Webinar
December 12, 12-1PM
Karina Forrest-Perkins, MHR LADC is the Executive Director of Prevent Child Abuse Minnesota. When children are subjected to trauma or toxic stress, their brain development is disrupted. This session addresses how the brain is intended to develop, the impact of toxic stress on the brain, the impact on behavior, protective factors that help prevent child maltreatment, why prevention is the most caring strategy for our society, what we can do collectively and individually, and where to find resources.
FASD, Trauma, and Problems of Sleep Training- St. Paul
December 20, 8:30AM-12:30PM
The American Institute for the Advancement of Forensic Studies (AIAFS) would like to invite you and your staff to our training to explore the relationship between FASD, trauma and problems of sleep in an adolescent and adult population. For additional info contact Jerrod Brown at 651-734-5517 or Jerrodbaiafs@gmail.com
Drinking to ‘Numb,’ Women Gain on Men in Alcohol Abuse
“…Men drink to be social for the most part. And women, although they drink to be social, when they get into trouble with alcohol, are often drinking to numb; drinking to escape loneliness, anxiety or depression. And women suffer a lot more depression than men do.”
MOFAS Baby Shower Bonus
Are you having a baby shower thrown for you, or planning one for a friend? We want to help celebrate and send you free goodies for the shower! Send MOFAS a copy of the invitation, the number of guest you expect, and where to send the goodies.
What a Diagnosis Does
“It gives answers to questions that loved ones have had for years. why does my child not want to play with the other kids? why does my child not like to be held or touched like other kids? why does my child not look at me in the eyes? These are just a few of the questions that make one understand.”
Looking for Employment Services for Individuals with an FASD?
MOFAS will have grants with employment agencies starting in January that will help increase access to employment and other related services. If this is an unmet need for you or someone you know, contact Kendra Gludt, email@example.com, with your name, age of the person needing services, and contact information. She will contact you when the employment programs start next year. Suspected FASD is sufficient, a diagnosis of an FASD is not required.
Disability and Health: Healthy Living
To be healthy, people with disabilities require health care that meets their needs as a whole person, not just as a person with a disability. Most people with or without disabilities can stay healthy by learning about living healthy lifestyles.
YAAC Adventure and Support Series- Metro
November 21, 5:30-7PM
Take a tour through the Golden Valley Humane Society. A fun activity in a safe and therapeutic environment for individuals ages 16-21.
YAAC: Pizza & Games- Waite Park
November 22, 6-7:30PM
For high-functioning young adults ages 14-24 who are living with an FASD throughout Minnesota.
Cognitive and Brain Imaging Study
The goals of the study are to improve the tools used in clinics to diagnose FASD, to allow for earlier diagnosis, and to increase understanding for the overall profile of FASD. Neurocognitive testing reveals critical insights into the strengths and weaknesses in FASD. Cutting-edge MRI techniques reveal previously unseen brain differences in FASD. 3D camera technology is used to analyze subtle facial features in prenatally exposed children. If you have a child between the ages of 5 and 16 years who was exposed to alcohol during pregnancy, we would like to speak with you about participating in this study. Our study team includes: Jeffrey Wozniak, PhD, Christopher Boys, PhD, Kelvin Lim, MD, and Marisa Whitley, BA. Contact us at 612-624-0127 or firstname.lastname@example.org