Helping the Behaviorally Challenging Child (HBCC) is the only organization is Orange County focused exclusively on a system of care around Collaborative Problem Solving. This exciting evidence-based approach helps with parenting, teaching and treating, children, teens, and young adults, with difficult-to-manage behaviors who are having trouble meeting the demands of home life and school expectations.  Orange County has been a leader in this innovative model that has proven its efficacy at all levels of caregiver support. Both locally and nationally this approach has realized improved outcomes in treatment and ultimately has improved relationships between children, their teachers, families, and caregivers. 


Helping the Behaviorally Challenging Child (HBCC) is a California Nonprofit Public Benefit Corporation that is composed of individuals who are committed to helping behaviorally challenging children lead more productive and inclusive lives.


Certified Professional Trainer and Presenter:
Debra Ann Afarian, Community Educator & Certified Think:Kids Practitioner
Debra Ann has been training, consulting, and supporting Collaborative Problem Solving in Orange County since 2010.  She has provided a 2-hour Professional Development In-service Overview and taught the 4-Week Course in a variety of settings: schools, residential treatment centers, education programs, family homes, WrapAround social services, Sunday schools, foster care, and more. HBCC hosts advanced 6-hour Overviews and 3-day Tier I Training's with expert trainers.

As a Certified Think:Kids Practitioner, Debra Ann Afarian, has worked to proactively to expose parents, teachers and professionals with the knowledge of this evidence-based approach for strengthening and improving the lives of complex children, teens and young adults who present with behavior challenges.  


​Adult/Child power struggles can leave both parties frustrated, with adults wondering how it could have gone differently.  The 2-hour Professional Development Introduction and  4-week course, derived from the Collaborative Problem Solving concepts outlined in the book "Treating Explosive Kids" by Dr’s. Ross W. Greene and J. Stuart Ablon, “The Explosive Child” & “Lost at School” by Dr. Ross W. Greene, is designed for professionals, teachers, parents and caregivers to learn how to effectively support and teach lagging skills to children/teens/young adults with complex behavioral challenges.  Participants in the training's will receive exposure into the assessment of behaviors to answer the question “what’s getting in the way of this child/teen/young adult meeting the daily demands of life?”  This is followed by the intervention components of Collaborative Problem Solving so that professionals, teachers, parents and caregivers learn immediately what to do about the child/teen/young adults difficult-to-manage behaviors.


  • Consideration of philosophical underpinnings of the Collaborative Problem Solving approach.
  • Discussions on how traditional approaches to address maladaptive behavior have been ineffective for people with moderate to severe social, emotional, behavioral, and life challenges.
  • Identify how the Collaborative Problem Solving Approach assesses challenges in living.
  • Begin to see challenging behavior as a by-product of lagging skills vs. willful. 
  • Begin Identifying a highly specific list of problems to be solved/challenges in living.
  • Identify key cognitive skills necessary for handling demands that life puts in front of us.
  • Identify expectations that address the needs of the person based on an accurate Collaborative Problem Solving assessment.
  • Identify the steps necessary to be effective at Collaborative Problem Solving and what goals the Collaborative Problem Solving process accomplishes.
  • Identify where cognitive skills are taught in the Collaborative Problem Solving process.​


  • ​4-Week Course switches from Weekday Mornings, Week Nights, Saturdays
  • 2-hour Professional Development In-service on request
  • 6-hour Overview on request
  • 3-day Tier I Training's on request

  1. Certificate of completion is awarded to those who complete the course.
  2. Completion of training qualifies, in some instances, for Continuing Education Credits.
  3. Completion of course qualifies participant for the Advanced Tier 1 Certification Workshop