As a Licensed Master Social Worker in the State of New York, Chanel occupied the role as a Special Education school social worker at OCM BOCES, serving children who have been identified as severely emotionally disturbed, autistic, or otherwise mentally or behaviorally
challenged. Chanel is best known for her steadfast advocacy for her students, diversity and inclusion, and protection for vulnerable populations. As a Special Education school social worker, Chanel strived to implement spaces that are trauma informed. In doing this, Chanel was the lead facilitator for a social and independent living skills group for students who have been diagnosed on the autism spectrum.
VIOLENCE PREVENTION & HEALING CIRCLES
Chanel is also the former Violence Education Prevention Outreach Social Worker at Upstate Medical University Hospital. Chanel worked primarily with self-identified current and former gang members in the city of Syracuse, who were victims of non-accidental trauma. During her work as the “VEPOP” social worker, Chanel was able to provide assistance to victims during their hospitalization and during their transition back into the community. Chanel pioneered the “ VEPOP Achievement Celebration”, in order to incentivize patients who successfully completed their individualized goals while participating in the VEPOP program.
As an advocate for holding space for Black and Brown people who have endured historical and ongoing community trauma, Chanel was the lead facilitator for the Syracuse Cure Violence SNUG programs therapeutic healing circles. Syracuse Cure Violence (SNUG) is an evidence-based program, utilizing the Chicago Cure Violence model, designed to reduce gun violence among Syracuse youth, ages 13-22 in the south and southwest neighborhoods. The Healing Circle Group participants have been identified as “At risk” youth in the city of Syracuse, New York. As the lead facilitator, Chanel was able to help participants: build resiliency, define and identify Trauma, identify Coping skills, de stigmatize mental health treatment, and ultimately build community among opposing neighborhood/ gang members.
Some of Chanel’s accomplishments include being selected as a 2018 Leadership Academy Participant at Upstate Medical University Hospital. The content of this academy focused on basic leadership skills with the premise that all employees are leaders within Upstate. Participants worked in teams on self-selected projects that had a positive impact on the institution. Most recently, Chanel was selected from a competitive applicant pool, to be a cohort member for the 2019 Millennial Women Making Moves Learning Community. MWMMLC is a leadership development program specifically designed to develop and accelerate the career paths of early- and mid-career professional women of color.