Our professional journey in the field of Infant and Early Childhood Mental Health began in 1985 as intern trainees at the Infant Parent Program at San Francisco General Hospital. Over the years we both have discovered that the academic learning process is firmly anchored in direct experiences trying to help young children and their families with their struggles. It’s a humbling feeling to discover that gaining all that academic learning is only a prelude to developing the ability to use that knowledge effectively to help a particular young child and a caregiver solve their shared interaction problems.
We want you to close your eyes and remember when you finished your training program and started your first job working with young children and families. Did you feel like you knew what to do, what to say, how to connect with your families and how to interpret your observations of parent-child interactions? Or did you find yourself sometimes feeling a bit like an imposter, a charlatan who had little to offer? Maybe you are still completing your pre-service training but already wonder if you will feel prepared for the challenges of your work. We have all been there experiencing self-doubt, feeling not quite up to the task, needing support and reflection on what we do.
Out of these early experiences, we were motivated to think about approaches to the professional development needs of practitioners entering the Infant/family/early childhood field. We developed The Learning Curve as a means to empower professionals working with young children and their families to explore and reflect on their own understanding of what it takes to continue growing in their professional development. This self-assessment is about You, the practitioner. We want to help all practitioners gage where they are in their knowledge, comprehension and application of an agreed upon knowledge base that fuels their work.
Learn About Donna & Deborrah
Donna R. Weston PhD
Dr. Weston is a Developmental Psychologist and Licensed Psychologist with over 35 years of experience in teaching, training, research, and clinical work with young children and their families. She has worked in pediatric outpatient settings, children’s mental health services, developmental disabilities services, intervention research settings, and private practice. Most recently, Dr. Weston was with Early Childhood Mental Health services at UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospital Oakland where she was director of the interdisciplinary clinical assessment team that provided assessment services for the birth to five age range. Dr. Weston directed the Graduate Certificate Program in Infant Mental Health at the University of Washington from 2001 to 2006 and developed interdisciplinary Infant Mental Health training programs for staff members of community based service programs in the Seattle area. Until her retirement from UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospital Oakland in December, 2016, Dr. Weston was a member of the ZERO TO THREE Training Group for the Diagnostic Classification 0-3 and provided numerous training events for practitioners on infant/child psychopathology, assessment, and diagnostic thinking. Dr. Weston’s training includes a PhD in Developmental Psychology from the University of California, Berkeley, clinical internship at the Infant-Parent Program at the University of California, San Francisco, and child analytic training at the Hanna Perkins Center, Cleveland OH.
Deborrah A. Bremond PhD, MPH
Dr. Bremond has worked as a clinician, administrator, and policy wonk in the field of infant and early childhood mental health for the past 35 years. She has a broad range of experience conceptualizing, developing and implementing integrated service delivery models for the birth to 5 populations. In her work she sought to integrate the importance of early social and emotional development into infant/toddler special education sites, neonatal follow-up programs, and pediatric primary care settings. For 11 years Dr. Bremond was the Director of Family Support Services at First 5 Alameda County. In that position she was responsible for designing and implementing family support services programming by coordinating access and linkages to early childhood services for children at home, in early care and education, and in community-based organizations serving babies and their families. Dr. Bremond’s training includes a doctorate from the Wright Institute in Clinical (child) Psychology, clinical internship at the Infant-Parent Program at the University of California, San Francisco, and a Master’s Degree in Public Health from the University of California, Berkeley, in Maternal and Child Health.
Our Logo Design
We acknowledge with delight and gratitude the time and effort of Caroline Pilkington (Pilkington Advertising Design) for her work developing our TLC logo. With her skills as a graphic artist and a fine-tuned ability to listen to us describe our vision for this website, Caroline captured the meanings we hoped to convey in a logo.