Jamestown, N.Y. – Leanna Luka-Conley will speak about “Strong Starts Chautauqua” at the Sunday, March 6, 10:30 a.m. service of the Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Jamestown (UUCJ).
This will be the UUCJ’s first hybrid service, where participation can be either in person at 1255 Prendergast Avenue or online.
Luka-Conley was instrumental in laying the foundations for Strong Starts Chautauqua, a universal system that will promote the health, well-being, development and school readiness of Chautauqua County children aged birth-5 through an evidence-based Screening, Assessment, Referral & Treatment (SART) model.
It is the vision of Strong Starts that Chautauqua County’s young children are healthy, and their families are informed, engaged, and supported through prenatal education as well as universal, uniform maternal and child screening and connection to needed resources.
Strong Starts Chautauqua’s mission is that all expectant women in Chautauqua County have access to prenatal education, care, and community support to promote healthy birth outcomes and strong futures in their children, and that all children aged birth through five in Chautauqua County have access to resources and timely, responsible care that help them achieve their full potential.
The presentation most closely relates to the first two of the seven Principles that Unitarian Universalist congregations affirm and promote: the inherent worth and dignity of every person and justice, equity and compassion in human relations.
A lifelong resident of Chautauqua County, Luka-Conley is a licensed social worker who attended Jamestown Community College, Fredonia State University, and the University at Buffalo. She has been the Deputy Commissioner of Adult, Children and Family Services of Chautauqua County Department of Health and Human Services since 2016. In addition to Strong Starts Chautauqua, she was instrumental in the Better for Families initiative that embedded peer recovery coaches in family court; families involved in this program had children outside of their care due to their substance use.
Luka-Conley is also an adjunct professor in the social work department at Fredonia State University and Jamestown Community College. In her previous position at The Resource Center she directed numerous clinics and services. A certified Bridges out of Poverty Trainer, her past work involved inpatient psychiatric, Hospice, community-based services, education advocacy, and transitional housing.
A question-and-answer opportunity will follow the presentation.
To learn more about Strong Starts Chautauqua, visit StrongStarts.com.
A social time follows the service.
While not mandated, vaccines, masks, and appropriate distancing are encouraged for those who participate in the service in person.
Anyone who would like to participate virtually can find the link at UUJamestown.org/calendar.
The Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Jamestown is a progressive, liberal religious community serving the southern tier of Western New York and Warren County, Pa. The UUCJ’s mission is to promote and provide a community where diverse people of all ages may explore the meaning of existence, give expression to liberal religious values, and work for a just, sustainable society.