Everyday, I Get Up and Go to Work . . .

Everyday, I Get Up and Go to Work . . .

Volunteering is the ultimate exercise in democracy.  You vote in elections once a year, but when you volunteer, you vote everyday, about the kind of community you want to live in. – Unknown

by:  Julie Beem

Everyday, I get up and stumble into my home office…to volunteer.  Often I’m three cups of coffee in and still in my PJs when I look up and realize that it’s noon.  I’ve spent the entire morning talking with families in crisis, or updating ATN’s online communication, or planning our next educational workshop.    My afternoon is often spent returning phone calls while driving my daughter to therapies and activities.  My evening frequently includes a late-night meeting or online chat after dinner is cleaned up and homework is finished.

Then I do it again the next day.  And so do many other volunteers with ATN.

You see, like the quote above says about volunteering, everyone who works for ATN gets to “vote everyday” about the kind of community we want to live in.  Everyone who works for ATN is a volunteer.  And everyday we vote that we want to live in a community where the impact of early childhood trauma is so widely recognized that the community actively works to end childhood trauma and to support traumatized children in their families, schools and everywhere.

ATN has been in it for the long haul.  This organization is 20 years old!  For 20 years parents and professionals have been volunteering to support traumatized children and their families.  For 20 years we’ve been educating about the attachment disorders and the impact of early childhood trauma.  For 20 years we’ve been coaching, training and guiding parents toward becoming more therapeutic in their parenting.  For 20 years we’ve been helping families find the right trauma-informed, attachment-focused therapists and services to help them. And we’ll be here tomorrow and the next day and the next day…Supporting, Educating, Advocating.

But we need YOU. Our nearly 30 regular volunteers need others to vote along side us – by volunteering, by joining, by donating.  We have a rich 20-year history of life-changing service to families of children with attachment disorders and impacts from early trauma.  Last year we served nearly 1,000 families and our outreach message went to over 10,000.  But there are still thousands who don’t know about ATN and worse – don’t know about therapeutic parenting and the types of therapies and services their children and families need.  We must have more funding, members and volunteers to reach all who need us and all who need to know about our families’ plight (like legislators, educators, social services and community leaders).

So, let’s all VOTE each and every day – in every way we can.  Here’s to the next 20 years of the Attachment & Trauma Network – and the incredible difference we’ll make toward ending childhood trauma and supporting traumatized children!

To Volunteer:  We have several specific needs right now, but are also always open to hearing about your ideas and specific talents.  To learn more visit our Volunteer Page.

To Donate:  ATN survives (and grows) due to the generous giving of our donors.  You can donate online here, or encourage others to give in honor of your family or other families living with attachment & trauma challenges.  We are a registered 501(c) 3 non-profit; donations are tax-deductible.

To Join:  If you’re not yet an ATN member, it’s the simplest way to “vote” for ATN and increase our children’s VOICE.  Find out more here.

Julie has been ATN's Executive Director since 2009. She joined the organization in 2004 after finding incredible support from fellow ATNers when she was searching for answers about her own daughter's early childhood trauma and attachment disorders. Julie leads a staff of passionate professionals and acts as spokesperson for the organization. Prior to ATN, Julie was the president of a marketing and communications consultancy, The Epiphany Group, and has over two decades of experience in professional services marketing, strategic planning and communication strategies. As a graduate of Partners in Policymaking and through personal experience, Julie has garnered a great deal of experience in the areas of special education, school issues, and disabilities advocacy. A published author, Julie wrote a chapter in the EMK Press Adoption Parenting book and was the special needs blogger at Adoptionblogs.com for two years. She frequently presents workshops on attachment and trauma to local and national groups. Email Julie. Julie holds an MBA from Avila College in Kansas City and was a Certified Professional Services Marketer. Julie, and her husband Dave, are parents to four (bio, step and adoptive), including their youngest daughter, adopted from China. This daughter’s attachment difficulties and developmental trauma disorder have changed their lives significantly…in amazing ways.