Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Georgetown Basketball honors social worker helping families and kids in crisis

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From the Bronx in New York City to some of the most depressed neighborhoods in Washington, DC, Lovannia Dofat-Avent has always been drawn to some of the toughest areas of service in social work. She has worked with children in abusive homes, foster care children, teenage parents living on their own, families under tremendous stress and more, always helping to care first for the person.

Lovannia and her family sitting courtside at
Georgetown Men's Basketball
Lovannia serves currently as the Senior Program Manager for Children Services at Catholic Charities. On Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, she was honored for her commitment and work to the community at the Georgetown University Men’s Basketball game.

Attending the game against Providence with her husband, son, and sister, Lovannia was honored immediately before tip-off at center court while the in-stadium announcer shared some of her professional accomplishments. A Catholic Charities video from the visit of Pope Francis was played right before.
On the Jumbotron!

It was inspiring to see so many people in the court cheer and clap for Lovannia, since the work of her and her team takes place away from the spotlight.

“I really have always valued being a role where I get to help people improve their lives,” Lovannia said. “Especially in terms of creating new programs that approach problems in a new way ”
Under Lovannia, several new programs have started at Catholic Charities that take innovative approaches to helping kids and families who are in need.

Our ChAMPS Program is a crisis response team who work specifically with children under the age of 17 who are experiencing a behavioral or mental health crisis.

Lovannia center court receiving an autographed ball
We run three programs working regionally with families who are at-risk of having a child or children removed from the home. These are highly intensive programs designed to prevent a crisis with ongoing social work, counseling and more.

This is the kind of important work Lovannia helps Catholic Charities provide. She does it with grace, leadership, and dedication. After being honored at center court, Lovannia and her family took in the game from courtside, as special guests of the Hoyas. While the home team lost, it was still a fantastic night!