When October 25, 2022 at 9:00am 1 hr

Register Here: www.bit.ly/hctfdisabilities   

Presenters:  Melissa Harper Osai, parent of a child with a disability and Susan Rocco, Coordinator for SPIN Special Parent Information Network.

Description of Training: This session will give participants some knowledge on general risk factors leading to child abuse/neglect that may apply to families of children with disabilities, protective factors for prevention of abuse/neglect, Family Strengthening/Resiliency Strategies, and tips for professionals when working with our children who have disabilities and special healthcare needs.

This webinar is a training for professionals in the child welfare field, Department of Health, Department of Education, various nonprofits and community organizations, stakeholders, and others. It will be recorded and posted on the HCTF website.



Susan Rocco, M.P.H., received a Master’s in Public Health from UCLA in 1975 and worked as a pharmaceutical sales representative before finding her true calling in 1985 as the coordinator of a new parent information and referral program within the Disability and Communication Access Board.  She likes to say that her son Jason “got her the job” as they were looking for a parent of a child with a disability to provide parent-to-parent support to other parents.  During her decades at SPIN, Susan has realized the importance of systems advocacy in making the world a more welcoming place for her son and all people with disabilities.


Melissa Harper-Osai, CFPS, is a Certified Family Peer Specialist with the National Federation for Families who previously worked with participants receiving services through Child & Mental Health Division. Giving back to the special needs and medically fragile community through volunteering, fundraising, and advocacy is her passion. The journey started in high school while working at an after-school program for individuals with disabilities. Later in life having two sons, one with severe ADHD and another with an extremely rare genetic anomaly, which includes approximately 30 diagnoses. This life journey has fueled her passion for advocacy and fighting for those whose voices are often silenced or ignored.