Meet some of your #TCOM2018 Presenters!

Featured in this post: Kyla Clark & Tanya Albornoz


Kyla Clark is a Program Administrator in Utah’s Child Welfare System. Kyla works on the “In-Home Team” focused on preserving family systems whenever safely possible. Kyla works on the larger Department of Human Services system integration efforts, which includes helping expand Utah’s Family and Children Engagement Tool (UFACET) into all family serving agencies in the department. Prior to working in child welfare, Kyla was an early childhood educator in both the public and private sector. Drawing on her own experiences helps her keep the child welfare work person-centered and individualized to family needs and strengths. e:


Tanya Albornoz has been the Foster Care Program Administrator for Utah’s child welfare system for 11 years. After implementing the CANS assessment in 2010 for children in foster care, she co-developed the UFACET for Utah and assisted in its integration into the child-welfare system as the assessment tool for all children and families being served. In addition to administering the foster care program, Tanya has dedicated much of her energy over the past few years to educating the foster care community about the UFACET and TCOM, with the goal of enhancing teaming and collaboration between parents, foster parents, and the agency in order to improve outcomes for children in foster care. Tanya is currently working on her master’s degree in Social Work at the University of Utah and is the mother of three beautiful daughters. e:

Q: What does Person-Centered Care mean to you?

KC: Person centered care means creativity and not attempting a “one size fits all” approach to helping people and their family system.

TA: I agree that creativity is an essential ingredient to person-centered care.  It is also important to be compassionate, thoughtful, and reflexive in our work, so we can truly understand the needs of those we serve and individualize the interventions we provide, rather than just throwing solutions at them that we might think they need.  I think we have a clear indication that we have been successful at practicing person-centered care when those we serve feel like we have truly partnered with them, and when we have been genuinely and curiously inquisitive in a way that helps them formulate their own solutions.”

Q: Why should individuals attend this year’s conference/your presentation?

KC: The conference provides amazing networking opportunities, allows you to see what other jurisdictions are working on, and track innovations.

TA: I have always been really impressed with the collective wisdom, experience, and knowledge of everyone involved in the TCOM community. No matter what point you are at in the TCOM journey, there always seems to be barriers or obstacles, that in my experience, someone else in the collaborative have been able to overcome or address.  It helps immensely to hear from other’s experiences, to share ideas and tools, to brainstorm how to overcome barriers, and to see what innovations others are working on.

Q: What drew you to attend this year?

KC: TCOM conferences provide an excellent parallel process opportunity, highlighting how collaboration with others across states, jurisdictions, and even countries lead to better product development, service delivery and ultimately outcomes for individuals and families.

TA: The collective knowledge of the collaborative is an amazing resource and makes the conference something I look forward to participating in every year. I love the camaraderie I experience with those that have been on this journey with me for awhile. It is also rejuvenating and invigorating to come away from the conference each year with new ideas, new perspectives, and new connections. I personally feel that the TCOM conference is a nice parallel process to the work we do with those we serve.

Q: Why did you choose to present on this specific topic?

KC: This year is an exciting year for TCOM in Utah. The Department of Human Services has expanded the use of UFACET beyond just our child welfare system to include Juvenile Justice, System of Care, Crisis Response, and services for people with disabilities. This allows for a new and better cross share of information between human service agencies. There are also plans to create a truly diverse training collaborative for these tools that will include not only agency personal, but community partners and possibly parents as well.                                                                                                                   TA: Within the collaborative, there are some amazing examples of TCOM implementations in mental health systems. I have often wished for more time to connect specifically with others in child welfare and/or juvenile justice systems in order to collaborate around the unique issues that we experience in our field. After a difficult first implementation of CANS in Utah and some hard lessons learned, we have had amazing success with our UFACET implementation. We would love to share what we have learned with others as well as hear about the work others are doing in their own jurisdictions. My hope is that our session will lead to further collaborations, inspire innovation and creativity for new applications of TCOM in child welfare and juvenile justice, and create optimism for the endless possibilities engendered by the TCOM approach.

Connect with Kyla and Tanya!

Attend their presentation at the 14th Annual TCOM Conference on Thursday, 10/4/2018 from 4-5:30pm.

CAN We Talk? Collaborative sharing between child welfare/juvenile justice agencies considering TCOM Implementation

This session will focus on Utah’s journey to create a CANS and FAST hybrid-Utah Family and Children Engagement Tool (UFACET). This evidence-based assessment increases communication and engagement with the families being served. Participants will learn about the implementation of the tool across Utah’s child welfare system. We will discuss the expansion of UFACET to other agencies in Utah’s Department of Human Services as well as Utah’s work to replace the Casey Life Skills assessment with a Transition to Adult Living module in UFACET. This presentation will offer a space for reflection, information sharing, and support.

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