|Position||Case Management Program Director|
|Institution||Ark of Freedom Alliance|
|Affiliations||Barry University, School of Social Work|
Katie graduated with a Master’s of Social Work degree from Barry University in May 2018. During tenure, she served her clinical internship at a safe home for minor female trafficking victims. Through this experience, Katie became passionately involved in the anti-trafficking movement through different local advocacy projects concerning human exploitation, sex trafficking, and prevention outreach.
Katie is currently working for Ark of Freedom Alliance, which is a survivor-led 501c3 human rights organization that utilizes a public health approach to prevent the trafficking of marginalized children and adults, while empowering those affected by harnessing the power of collective impact. The organization, based in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, provides awareness and education, prevention education, case management, housing and mental health care coordination and other wrap-around supports to male survivors of human trafficking, sexual assault, and other forms of violence.
Research Assistant to Professor Eva Nowakowski, Barry University
Katie conducted a research study on the impact of group exercise on sobriety success using grounded theory. She collected data on candidates to assess their use of exercise in relation to their recovery program and conducted qualitative data analysis of same. Her work can be found in the Journal of Social Work Practice in the Addictions, “Relearning to Live Life Without Substances: A Grounded Theory of the Impact of Group Physical Exercise on Sobriety.”
Research Assistant to Professor Sambra Zaoui, Barry University
Katie’s research focused on male child sexual abuse in relation to trafficking outcomes. She conducted literature analysis for the Professor’s phenomenological study of males who had been trafficked, or were vulnerable to becoming trafficked.
Canine-assisted Therapy for Minor Victims of Sex Trafficking
During her Master’s clinical internship, Katie developed a 12-week DBT group therapy class curriculum using canine assistants. Adding an adolescent dog into the group increased rapport significantly, brought comfort to the clients, and also became a unique, tactile tool for grounding the clients if necessary. Different topics included mindfulness, assertive communication, emotion identification, distress tolerance, and radical acceptance. Katie wishes to eventually further develop and modify this curriculum to fit her male client’s needs at the Ark.
Nowakowski, E. and Bullard, K. Relearning to Live Life without substances: A Grounded Theory of the Impact of Group Exercise on Sobriety. Journal of Social Work Practice In The Addictions. (July 2018).