ACES: Building a Resilient Community
Childhood trauma has affected the majority of people in our community. Specific family problems as well as child abuse and neglect (summarized as Adverse Childhood Experience, or ACEs) have been shown to increase risks for serious mental and physical health issues later in life. However, having adverse childhood experiences is not a diagnosis and does not predict negative outcomes. Most people can deal with these complex traumatic experiences with resilience and move on to lead rich, fulfilling lives. Resiliency can be fostered in youth and adults. There are effective ways we can work together to help build resiliency as individuals, families, systems, and as a community to help more people reach a higher level of resiliency and well-being.
Basic Information about ACEs
- Original ACEs Study: What are adverse childhood experiences and why do they matter? Groundbreaking research links child adversity to long-term mental and physical health problems.
- Iowa ACEs Data: How prevalent are adverse childhood experiences in Iowa? A state-wide survey tells us that childhood adversity has been experienced by the majority of Iowans.
- The Neurobiology of Stress: This research brief provides a summary of the connection between early experiences of stress and the potential impact of those experiences on the body and developing brain.
- Link to Iowa ACEs online learning modules: Prevent Child Abuse Iowa worked with the Iowa Department of Public Health and Quality Assist to develop the following online learning modules: 1) The ACE Study: Its Impact and Our Opportunity and 2) A Child Abuse Prevention Response to ACEs.
Building a Resilient Community
- Resiliency: Resiliency is learned. What is resiliency and how do people become more resilient? The American Psychological Association (APA) walks through basic information about resiliency and the behaviors, thoughts, and actions that are learned and internalized to increase resiliency.
- Protective Factors: What helps people to develop resiliency? Protective factors including healthy attachment, strong parenting skills, parent resilience, social connections, professional supports, and child social and emotional competence help minimize the potential impact of adversity.
- Resiliency Trumps ACEs: Tools, tips, and information for parents and providers working to increase resiliency in children, families, and communities.
- Promoting Resiliency: This brief provides an introduction to resilience, one of many protective factors that child abuse and neglect prevention professional are examining.
For Faith Communities:
For Educators and School Systems:
Trauma can have a profound impact on students as people and their ability to be successful in school. Students spend a significant amount of time at school. Safe and compassionate schools foster student resiliency and maximize student success.
For Parents and Caregivers:
For Social Service and Mental Health Providers
For Healthcare Providers:
For Court, Legal, and Law Enforcement Professionals:
This site has information for everyone. Tina