Learning to Listen Fall 2020

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Learning to Listen returns with three more engaging episodes, which will feature transgender-rights advocates Johanna Olson and Aydin Olson-Kennedy talking about children’s gender identity and how to provide gender affirmation to all children; Mayra Alvarez, CEO of the Children’s Partnership, discussing current immigration policies and their harmful effects on children and families; and Hassan Daniel, founder of the Father Factory, discussing how fathers with childhood histories of sexual abuse can heal and become the fathers they want to be and their families need them to be.

All webinars will have live Spanish translation available. 

Join our speakers after the episode for a live and interactive discussion! 


Wednesday, October 14, 3 PM ET / 12 PM PT
Parents, Children and Transgender Identities

Transgender-rights advocates Johanna Olson-Kennedy, MD, and Aydin Olson-Kennedy, LCSW, spoke with BTC Executive Director Joshua Sparrow, MD, about children’s gender identity and how to provide gender affirmation to all children.

Watch the recording


Aydin Olson-Kennedy, LCSW, is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker who has worked with underserved and marginalized populations throughout his professional career. He began his Social Work career working with youth in foster care and group homes, the juvenile justice system, and those experiencing homelessness or precariously housed. Aydin’s advocacy work has also included assisting adults with autism, victims, and survivors of sexual assault and domestic violence. Over the past ten years, his career as a mental health professional has primarily focused on providing services for youth and adults within the trans community and their families. Aydin brings a unique perspective to his career as a transgender man who at one time needed similar mental health and medical services for himself. In 2008, when Aydin began his medical transition, he was unable to find safe, competent, and affirming mental health care. As a result, he commuted over 6 hours each week to meet with a gender specialist to move forward with his transition. This personal experience of overwhelming barriers to care ignited his passion for creating and contributing to accessible, high-quality mental health care within his community. In 2009, he co-founded the Stonewall Alliance Center Community Counseling Program. That program aimed to provide high quality, no-cost mental health services for LGBTQ youth and adults in Chico, California.

Johanna Olson-Kennedy, MD is an Associate Professor at the Keck School of Medicine at USC, and a full time practicing faculty member at the Division of Adolescent and Young Adult Medicine at Children’s Hospital Los Angeles. Dr. Olson-Kennedy is the Medical Director of the Center for Transyouth Health and Development at Children’s Hospital Los Angeles, the largest trans youth clinic in the country. Additionally, Dr. Olson-Kennedy spearheads a rigorous research program aimed at better understanding the experience of gender dysphoria from early childhood through adulthood. She has been providing gender-affirming services for children, adolescents, and young adults for fourteen years. Additionally, she speaks around the world about the importance of timely and appropriate care for transgender youth.


Wednesday, October 28, 3 PM ET / 12 PM PT
Fighting Immigration Policies that Tear Families Apart

Mayra Alvarez, President of the Children’s Partnership, spoke with BTC Executive Director Joshua Sparrow, MD, about current immigration policies and their harmful effects on children and families.

Watch the recording


Mayra Alvarez is President of The Children’s Partnership, a nonprofit children’s advocacy organization committed to giving every child, no matter their background, the resources and opportunities they need for a bright future. Under her leadership, TCP is building strong community partnerships, conducting forward-looking research, and advancing informed policy that betters the health and well-being of underserved children in California. She combines her decade of experience in health care policy and community outreach with her personal conviction that every child and family should have the opportunity and resources to pursue their dreams.



Wednesday, November 18, 3 PM ET / 12 PM PT
Supporting Fathers Who Were Sexually Abused as Children

Hassan Daniel, Founder and CEO of the Father Factory, will discuss fathers with childhood histories of sexual abuse and how they can heal and become the fathers they want to be and their families need them to be.

Watch the recording


Hassan Daniel is the Founder and CEO of The Father Factory, Inc., a fatherhood program geared towards positive parenting, biblical literacy, and counseling for fathers who have experienced various types of childhood trauma, included, but not limited to, molestation, and physical and mental abuse. Hassan, a faithful husband, dedicated father to his two sons, ordained minister, and compassionate speaker on a mission to optimize affirmative parenting outcomes for fathers, by providing guidance, proven resources, and anon-judgmental community. Hassan’s mission is to help fathers navigate through everyday life despite personal dilemmas. Hassan additionally works with families while providing lectures on various topics ranging from inner healing to early childhood development. He is the published author of a book entitled, “Where is the man of the house?”


Thank you to our sponsor


To view recordings of the Learning to Listen series, visit our YouTube channel.


Questions? Contact Kayla Savelli at kayla.savelli@childrens.harvard.edu