Updated: Jul 1, 2019
New Orleans, LA Licensed Certified Social Worker (CSW)
Family & Child Advocate
The family unit has a pronounced influence on most aspects of our human development. How many times have you heard the saying, “You’re a reflection of your environment…“by a friend, love one or colleague? Although many can argue for or against the statement, as a child our first environment involves our family followed by our peers, instructors, and counselors that go on to impact us in profound ways –hence our main environment in a nutshell! All of those individuals are major players in the development of a child early on. However, there are some that go above and beyond to not only support the child but in fact their entire family–That’s Nikki Akins role every day!
Born and raised in New Orleans, Louisiana, Nikki prides herself in being a successful product of the Head Start program which she believes enabled her to advance well in her grade school years. After graduating from Eleanor McMain Magnet High School in New Orleans, she joined the US Army where she served 8 years with honorable discharged. Nikki was indeed grateful to have played a major role in serving her country but she discovered that she possessed a greater love for addressing social causes that impacted both children and families. She spent roughly 10 years of her career in Human Resources following her military discharge and decided to switch career paths toward what she believed was her true calling –social work!
In 2002, she went on to further her education receiving a dual degree in both Psychology and Sociology from Drury University in Springfield, Missouri and a Master of Social Work (MSW) from University of Texas Arlington in 2016. She became a Child Protective Investigator for Texas for 3 years where she worked along side others colleagues in research, assessment and intervention of abused and neglected children and their families, developing systematic strategies to reduce the risk of further assaults. Later on, she was privileged to lead as a Family Program Manager and advance to Regional Program Manager for a nonprofit organization where she was responsible for the oversight of all service delivery and program operations of the Regional Support Team. Nikki has been committed to advocating for children and families (also her country) for her entire adult life.
Nikki now serves as a Family Advocate and Prenatal Counselor for St Mary of the Angel’s Early Head Start program in the Upper Ninth Ward community of New Orleans, LA. She is passionate about ensuring that both children and families are well versed on the importance of their safety, physical & mental health and social well-being. Each month, she coordinates school meetings that are aimed at providing parents with diverse academic opportunities for their kids along with nutrition & healthcare information that involves a multi-disciplinary team: educators, registered dietitians, nurses, and a pharmacist. She believes that there is a unique value in early childhood education that involves a multifaceted approach toward educating and empowering everyone involved and she is committed to faithfully serving in that regard!
Follow: @naturallynikki Nova on Facebook
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