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Infant Mental Health CoP

Shared interests and practices contribute to the birth-3 infant mental health (IMH) field by building capacity for professionals around IMH topics, increasing knowledge of IMH topics within local communities (including parents), supporting institutes of higher education in providing accessible courses and/or certification related to IMH, increasing awareness of and advocating for IMH within local/state agencies, and exploring funding opportunities for IMH activities.

Participants receive a network of support across practitioners, higher education faculty, professional development providers, and families with a shared interest in supporting the emotional well-being of young children and their families.

Join the Infant Mental Health CoP

When you join the Infant Mental Health CoP, you become a member of a peer-to-peer group vested in the field of Infant Mental Health. The short membership form gathers pertinent information about each member. The information is used to facilitate networking, resource-sharing, problem-solving, and collaboration around EI-related issues and discussions.​


Alliance for the Advancement of Infant Mental Health

The Alliance for the Advancement of Infant Mental Health is a global organization that partners with associations of infant mental health so that associations can support, grow, diversify, and advocate for their local infant & early childhood mental health-informed workforce. 

State Organizations for Infant Mental Health

Download a list of infant mental health organizations by state 

Michigan Association for Infant Mental Health

The Michigan Assoc. for IMH is a nonprofit professional organization that’s all about promoting optimal infant and early childhood mental health by way of supporting the birth-to-six professionals who work with or on behalf of infants, young children, and their families.

Meeting & Events

Upcoming DEC Infant Mental Health Community of Practice Quarterly Meetings   

Register for any or all of the 2024 quarterly meetings here.

Tuesday, June 11th, 2024, 2:00 - 3:30 PM Eastern 

Tuesday, September 10th, 2024, 2:00 - 3:30 PM Eastern 

Tuesday, December 10th, 2024, 2:00 - 3:30 PM Eastern 

March Quarterly Meeting 

Tuesday, March 12th, 2024, 2:00 - 3:30 PM Eastern 

View the recording of this month's Pyramid Model overview with Erin Barton, PhD, BCBA-D.

Caring Across Colors: Bridges to Understanding Download the recording and handouts here.

Join us for a webinar that illustrates the birth and development of a parent and an early intervention provider partnership. The presenters will examine how they navigated their work together across the racial divide created by structural racism. Through this examination they will reflect on how they each gained insight into how their individual stances and actions were impacted by the weight of historical racism. Some of the concepts that will be discussed include power differentials (pre-conceived and real), self-regulation, impulse control, and cultural humility.

Whether you’re a seasoned parent or provider or someone who is just starting out, this is an unmissable opportunity to reflect on working across identities. 


Kena Chambers, BA, I/ECMH-C, is a 28 year old mother that is originally from a little country town in Alabama, US. She currently lives in Bavaria, Germany. Kena previously worked with clients diagnosed with Intellectual Developmental Disorder & has recently completed Georgetown University’s Infant and Early Childhood Mental Health certificate program in 2023. As a presenter at the 2023 WAIMH Conference, she was able to use her unique perspective as both a parent and professional to pitch innovative ideas geared towards mediating racial equity with the field of early childhood mental health. 

Kirsten Sippel-Klug, PT, MPP, I/ECMH-C, is an early intervention physical therapist. For over 30 years, she has been partnering with caregivers to facilitate their child’s development so their child can live a life filled with love, friendship, and academic success. Kirsten is certified in Early Intervention, Infant and Early Childhood Mental Health, Circle of Security, Facilitating Attuned Interactions (FAN) Level I & II, and Newborn Behavioral Observations. She is a member of the American Physical Therapy Association, the World Association of Infant Mental Health and the Massachusetts Alliance of Infant Mental Health.

DEC Infant Mental Health Community of Practice: Sensory Regulation and the Impact on Infant and Early Childhood Mental Health 

Wednesday, August 16th, 2023, 2:00 - 3:30 PM Eastern Time     Download the recording and handout here.

Join us to understand the function and structure of the sensory systems during early childhood development. Participants will gain a deeper understanding of how sensory regulation impacts Infant and Early Childhood Mental Health.

Presented by Gerry Healy Marini, OTD, MSH, OT/L, ASDCS

Dr. Gerry Healy Marini has been an Occupational Therapist for the last 30 years. Gerry is a graduate of Temple University with a B.S. in OT, Wilmington University with a Master of Healthcare Administration and Management, and a Clinical Doctorate in OT from Eastern Kentucky University. Currently Gerry is Director of Professional Therapy Services in New Jersey and Assistant Professor of Occupational Therapy at Saint Josephs University in Philadelphia. Gerry serves on the Board of Trustees and co-chair of the student engagement committee for the NJ-AIMH. Gerry is a member of the Interdisciplinary Higher Education cohort for the Division of Early Childhood of the Council for Exceptional Children.
Gerry has provided interdisciplinary and intradisciplinary presentations on topics of Infant and early childhood mental health. Her areas of research include Infant and Early Childhood Mental Health; Well Siblings of children with disabilities; Social Emotional Development and Social Emotional Learning.

Caregiver Perspective: Raising a Child with an Incurable Diagnosis 

Friday, May 12th, 2023, 12:00 - 1:15 PM Eastern Time     Download the recording here.

Join us for this intimate webinar opportunity. Participants will learn about a parent’s journey raising a child with an incurable diagnosis including her experiences with postpartum depression, grief, stress, and more.

Presented by Alondra Mustafa and Lisa Terry 


Alondra Mustafa

Hello, my name is Alondra Mustafa and I am a mom to three boys with a fourth boy on the way. My two oldest sons share a rare genetic progressive disorder that currently has no cure called Hereditary Spastic Paraplegia type 52. Before I became a full-time caregiver to my boys, I was a a special instructor in Georgia’s early intervention program. When my oldest transitioned into the public school system I followed him and worked as a special education teacher for my county’s early childhood education program. Today, I am active in advocating for special education children at a local and state level. I am part of my state's Parent Advocate Workgroup (PAW), State Interagency Coordinating Council (SICC), helping to develop Georgia’s Comprehensive System of Personnel Development (CSPD), a parent mentor in our university systems’ Georgia Leadership Education in Neurodevelopmental and related Disabilities program (GALEND), and often volunteer in other university programs helping to educate and motivate rising and established professionals. 

Lisa Terry, MS, MEd, Infant Family Specialist, IMH-E®

Lisa is the co-facilitator for DEC's Infant Mental Health Community of Practice. She provides support for the design and implementation of professional development activities for early intervention providers and administrators in Virginia. She has worked in early intervention for over 15 years as an educator, service coordinator, and clinical supervisor. Lisa is a certified trainer in the Growing Brain, a ZERO TO THREE curriculum. She maintains endorsement in infant mental health as an Infant Family Specialist.

DEC Infant Mental Health Community of Practice Quarterly Meeting 

Tuesday, December 13th, 2022, 2:00 - 3:30 PM Eastern Time  

Access the Padlet

Tuesday, September 13th, 2022, 2:00 - 3:30 PM Eastern Time 

Access the Padlet

Tuesday, June 14th, 2022, 2:00 - 3:30 PM Eastern Time 

Access the Padlet

Tuesday, March 8th, 2022, 2:00 - 3:30 PM Eastern Time

Friday, December 10th, 2021, 12:00 - 1:30 PM Eastern Time 

Handouts     Access the Padlet

Writing Social and Emotional Goals to Promote Family Engagement: A Two-Part Event

Part 1 - Monday, March 21st, 2022, 2:00 PM Eastern Time

Download the recording

Join us to learn about the components of social emotional goals and how to incorporate family strengths into goal writing. We will discuss how the Pyramid Model relates to goal writing. Training will be an interactive and engaging experience. Participants will have an opportunity to practice goal writing using vignette scenarios together in break out groups.

Part 2 - Monday April 25th, 2022, 2:00 PM Eastern Time

Download the recording

Join us for Part II of Writing Social and Emotional Goals to Promote Family Engagement. This session will solely focus on practicing goal writing using scenario vignettes. Come ready to engage and learn.

Presented by Naomi Grinney, LCSW     Read presenter bio

Reflective Parenting 

Thursday, February 24th, 2022, 3:00 PM Eastern Time 

Download the handout and recording

This workshop will look at reflective functioning in parents as well as in the professionals who work with them.  This exploration will include how we understand reflective processes, how they relate to the brain, and how they help us to make meaning. We will also examine how reflective practice helps us to build a better understanding of others, allows us to repair misunderstandings, and how it is essential for  healthy social emotional development.

Presented by Nina Newman, PhD     Read presenter bio

Gerry Healy Marini
Alondra Mustafa
Lisa Terry
Kirsten Sippel-Klugg
Kena Chambers
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