Carol J. Matthews-Shifflett
CEO & Consultant- MA, Community Leadership Carol Jean Matthews-Shifflett, Owner an CEO of The Sojourner Group, earned a Master of Arts in Community Leadership after earning her BA in Anthropology, with a focus on culture. Both areas of academic study led her to pursue a career focusing on the well-being of women and children. Ms. Shifflett is committed to ensuring that victims/survivors who identify as Black, are defined as Black, and those who identify with the historical context of the African American experience find healthy spaces to convey their underlying trauma. Based on personal narratives from Black/African American and Black multi-racial women regarding their experiences with mainstream social service providers and advocates revealed that there is a lack of ability to relate to and comprehend their experiences fully. The lack of cultural familiarity, understanding and sensitivity leaves many victims/survivors to suffer in silence. And sadly, a silenced victim/survivor stands unprepared, yet likely, to experience a lifetime of poor mental health. Based on personal narratives from Black/African American and Black multi-racial women regarding their experiences with mainstream social service providers and advocates revealed that there is a lack of ability to relate to and comprehend their experiences fully. The lack of cultural familiarity, understanding and sensitivity leaves many victims/survivors to suffer in silence. And sadly, a silenced victim/survivor stands unprepared, yet likely, to experience a lifetime of poor mental health.
Certified Social Worker ~ BS in Psychology
Sherry is a Certified Social Worker. Earning a BS in Psychology, she has dedicated her career to clients with various mental health issues. Ms. Long serves as the primary facilitator for Utah’s Sistah Circle of The Sojourner Group. She currently serves as a Social Worker for Journey of Hope. For over 25 years she devoted her passion to clients at Valley Mental Health (Valley Behavioral Health). Ms. Long has worked with patients struggling with Serious Persistent Mental Illness (SPMI), had a large clientele of patients while managing the Drug and Alcohol unit; while specifically concentrating on women and children’s issues. In addition, Ms. Long contributed as both leader and co-leader in this unit. Throughout her career, Ms. Long played a key role in developing innovated programs, assisted with establishing policies and procedures, and advocated for clients. She has worked with community partners and agencies, setting up team meetings to help clients coordinate services and resources. She laid out treatment plans, safety plans, and trained peer leaders while supervising them to ensure that patients were receiving proper care. She has run aftercare groups, helped with vocational rehab, case management (intensive) assisted with housing assignments, and was both motivational and inspirational in helping clients see their best potential. She has prepared clients for speaking engagements to tell their stories at high schools, the Boys and Girls Clubs, on college campuses, etc. Ms. Long’s life’s work is committed to providing the best care possible to those working towards a healthier way of living
We are beyond thrilled to announce the first-ever awardees of the #NewPatternUT grant!
As many of you may remember, this past summer, with the generous support of the Community Foundation of Utah, we teamed up with three other community and business leaders – Utah Black Chamber, Beta Boom and Sorenson Impact – to launch #NewPatternUT, a collaborative grant and mentorship program for Black, women-owned businesses in Utah.
Designed to combat the disparity in funding for Black-owned businesses, who have also been especially hard-hit by COVID-19, the grant program provides both immediate capital and ongoing holistic support designed to ensure more equitable access to the larger fundraising and business ecosystem for Black women.
The Sojourner Group is persistent in the work of educating communities about the historically under-represented American Black victimized sexual and domestic surviors of violence who are often ignored and dismissed.
Your selfless contributions makes it possible to continue educating, engaging, and empowering the American Black victimized survivor-woman to move beyond the negative stereotypes and biases and reflect on qualities that lead to healtheir lifestyles, leading to healthier families.