ACEsConnectionCommunitiesWichita State University Community Engagement Institute - ACEs Connection (KS)

Wichita State University Community Engagement Institute - ACEs Connection (KS)

Kansas ACEs Connection is dedicated to connecting and supporting organizations, systems, and communities who are interested in better understanding the prevalence of ACEs and trauma, recognizing the impact that these have on individual and organizational health, and developing policies and practices that promote resiliency and healing.

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Higher Education’s Role in Promoting Racial Healing and the Power of Wonder (criticalimpact.com)

As protests erupt across the country and around the world demanding justice for George Floyd, a black man who was killed while in Minneapolis police custody, higher education must play a leadership role in addressing the issues at their center—racism and white supremacy. The devastating video that shows Mr. Floyd pleading for his life follows high-profile news reports of the killing of Breonna Taylor, a young black woman who was shot in bed by Memphis police engaged in a botched search for a...

A Better Normal, Tuesday, June 2nd at Noon PDT: Higher Education and Trauma During COVID-19

Please join us for the ongoing community discussion of A Better Normal, our ongoing series in which we envision the future as trauma-informed. College graduates across the world have been celebrating their big day virtually this month, missing out on the right of passage that marks their stepping into new realms of adult and professional life. Many students and recent graduates are feeling the negative impact of the current pandemic: being housing displaced, adjusting to virtual classrooms,...

Kansas Support Group Services and Resources

We are living and working in a time of change and disruption. Not only disruption of what we do and how we do it, but disruptions in relationships integral to our personal and professional lives. As a result of these circumstances, we may experience anxiety, stress, sadness, loneliness, grief, etc. Connecting with people who share similar experiences during this time can be critical for our physical and emotional health. To help you navigate these changing times, the WSU Community Engagement...

Helping Families Stay Regulated during a Pandemic

As our communities struggle to do what is needed to keep people safe and families work to find a new a “normal” while caring for and educating children at home full time – it can be a lot to handle. Child psychologist and trauma expert, Dr. Bruce Perry offered 8 tips for helping children stay regulated in this recent article from Psychology Today . Dr. Perry was also a part of this video resource for parents, Staying sane while Parenting with Shelter-in-Place! For service providers who would...

Comment by Kim Jordan

Vanessa, Thank you for this beautiful reminder that our current challenges are golden opportunities to demonstrate what truly matters.

A Call for "Kindness"

As I’m writing this, Kansas has confirmed its 15 th case of the novel coronavirus and our teams have switched to telecommuting for the foreseeable future. At the same time, our public health and healthcare partners are working tirelessly to protect our families, friends, and neighbors – some bravely putting themselves in harm’s way to keep others safe. This also likely means they aren’t the most popular people in our communities as we are asked to institute “social distancing” and stay away...

New Resource: Measuring the Impact of TI Primary Care

As more and more organizations work toward trauma-informed, many struggle with how to measure the impact they are having on those they serve. In a new brief from the Center for Healthcare Strategies, leaders from the Montefiore Medical Group shares a proposed model to help organizations consider the critical question, “Is what we are doing working?” If you are an organization in Kansas, our Trauma-Informed Systems of Care team may be able to assist you in developing an infrastructure to...

Positive Childhood Experiences offset ACEs: Q & A with Dr. Robert Sege about HOPE

Tufts University medical professor Dr. Robert Sege directs the Center for Community-Engaged Medicine and is nationally known for his research on effective health systems approaches that address social determinants of health. He is also the principal investigator for the HOPE framework (Healthy Outcomes from Positive Experiences).The HOPE framework is based on research that shows how positive childhood experiences can mitigate the effects of adverse childhood experiences. Sege and colleagues...

Campaign for Trauma-Informed Policy and Practice (CTIPP) launches new grassroots initiative to engage and educate Congress

From Elizabeth Prewitt (ACEs Connection Staff) CTIPP (Campaign for Trauma-Informed Policy and Practice) today announced the launch of the National Trauma Campaign , calling for federal action to prevent and address childhood trauma and build resilience through educating and engaging Congress. Its widely circulated communication invited people from around the country to join the new grassroots initiative. The campaign provides ways for everyone to get involved by joining the effort, becoming...

Trauma-Informed Design: Providing a Calming Effect for Clients [traumainformedoregon.org]

From Christine Stone (Department of Human Services, Communication, Trauma-Informed Oregon, January 31, 2020 The Department of Human Services (DHS) is building a new three-story, 96,000-square-foot building in Gresham. But it’s not just another government-looking edifice. Trauma-Informed Design The building, planned for 22200 S.E. Stark Street, will have a trauma-informed design. This means creating a physical environment that promotes a sense of safety and calm for our clients and our staff.

New resource for Creating a "Mentally Healthy" Workplace

In our work across the state, we frequently connect with partners who want to share information about ACEs/Resilience with local business leaders but aren't sure how to respond to the inevitable question, "So now what?" A new resource released in January from Policy Research Associates may be able to support these conversations. Best Practices for Creating a Mentally Healthy Workplace includes a framework and tools that businesses can use to improve their organizational culture to promote...

Supporting Schools in Becoming Models for Trauma-Informed Practice

School districts across the state (and country) are working to find ways to become more trauma-aware, trauma-sensitive, and trauma-responsive. Many have started the process by implementing a variety of programs and practices school-wide from Restorative Justice to Capturing Kids' Hearts . Others are making small changes, one classroom at a time. All of it is good work – and the best way to make it sustainable is to have a written plan developed by leaders at all levels within the school or...

The Spirit of the Season

It’s that time of year – the time of year that is often described as “merry”, “bright”, and “joyful”. A popular way of spreading the joy is through cookie exchanges where we share our favorite memories and recipes with others through little wrapped packages of often artful treats. This year, I would suggest that we spread that comfort and warmth through a different kind of cookie exchange. In their book, Fostering Resilient Learners , Kristin Souers and Pete Hall introduce a concept called...

New website hosts resources for Kansas farmers who feel stressed or considering suicide

From the Lawrence Journal-World : In response to high suicide rates among America’s farmers, a new website developed by the Kansas Department of Agriculture provides resources and support to those dealing with stress. Kelsey Olson, KDA’s assistant secretary of agriculture, led the effort in creating the website: kansasagstress.org . “I just thought that there was a need for a consolidated location of resources for our farmers and ranchers,” she said. Olson said that, to her knowledge, Kansas...

New SAMHSA resource for School Administrators

As our team works with communities across the state, we have had the privilege of meeting a significant number of educators who are working to respond to the growing number of behavioral health needs their students are presenting. To support those efforts , the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) has just released Student Assistance: A Guide for School Administrators . The purpose of this guide is to provide school leaders and administrators with key...

A note of reflection and gratitude

I can’t believe that this month (…year…decade?!) is nearly over. Like many others this week, I’m doing a lot of reflecting about what I’m thankful for. In the month of November, our TISC team has had the privilege of talking to and learning from people across Kansas who care about building resilient residents, organizations, and communities. In a time when the world seems more than a little chaotic, intolerant, and just plain unkind – I’m grateful to be in a position to have witnessed the...

Happy Halloween!

October 31 kicks off a three day celebration dedicated to remembering the dead, including saints (hallows), martyrs, and all the faithful departed. Halloween, in particular, can be a challenging time for those who have experienced trauma. To learn more about how to manage triggers this Halloween and be more trauma aware, check out this article from Promise Behavioral Health in Tennessee. Halloween can also be a great time to build positive relationships with your own children and children in...

Create the Context for Healthy Children and Families through Policies (EfC Goal #4)

We are going to wrap up our series on the Essentials for Childhood Framework with perhaps one of the toughest parts of the work – influencing policy. One of the best ways to assure that all of our great work doesn’t disappear when the winds change is to have it be embedded in our infrastructure, but it isn’t easy. The CDC suggests that there are two steps to inform policies that might support safe, stable, nurturing relationships and environments. Identify and assess which policies may...

12 Myths of the Science of ACEs

The two biggest myths about ACEs science are: MYTH #1 — That it’s just about the 10 ACEs in the ACE Study — the CDC-Kaiser Permanente Adverse Childhood Experiences Study . It’s about sooooo much more than that. MYTH #2 — And that it’s just about ACEs…adverse childhood experiences. These two myths are intertwined. The ACE Study issued the first of its 70+ publications in 1998, and for many people it was the lightning bolt, the grand “aha” moment, the unexpected doorway into a blazing new...

ICYMI: The 12 Myths of the Science of ACEs

Just in case you missed it, Jane Stevens has posted a great new article and infographic explaining the 12 Myths of the Science of ACEs . Reading it, I felt like Jane has been following our team around lately (in a good way!). We have these discussions on a regular basis within the communities and organizations we visit - and we are betting that you do too! For us, Jane's article reinforces (and validates!) what we try to share with others and gives us additional language to do that in a...

Promoting Positive Community Norms (EfC Goal #3)

Safe, stable, nurturing relationships are key to a child’s cognitive, emotional, physical and social development. Their first exposure to these are through parents and caregivers, but these relationships don’t happen in a vacuum. The physical and social environment surrounding families have a significant impact – both positively and negatively – on the context in which relationships develop. One way to think about this context is through community norms. Norms are defined as a those values,...

Using Data to Support your ACEs Work (EFC Goal #2)

Increasing awareness of the need to develop and support safe, stable, nurturing relationships and environments is most effective when the discussing includes factual information about the size and nature of the issue in your organization, neighborhood, or community. Enter the CDC’s Essentials for Childhood Goal #2: Use Data to Inform Action. Using the information that you have available not only helps to build the case for action, but also helps to identify needs and gaps, to direct...

Kansas Communities Building ACEs Awareness (EfC Goal 1)

Before we can make progress on any issue that affects the health and well-being of those who live in our communities, people must be aware that an issue exists. In this installment, of our series dedicated to the CDC’s Essentials for Childhood Framework , we are going to highlight ways that some communities in Kansas are working toward achieving Goal #1: Raise awareness and commitment to promote safe, stable, nurturing relationships and environments and prevent child abuse and neglect. In...

A Public Health Approach to Preventing ACEs and Toxic Stress

Adverse Childhood Experiences and Toxic Stress are considered by many to be the #1 Public Health issue of our time. These experiences are often at the core of many other issues that we see in our communities such as interpersonal and community violence, substance use and misuse, suicide, and any number of chronic health issues such as diabetes, cancer, even Alzheimer’s. While it often seems like an overwhelming task, taking on public health crises is something that advocates in the U.S. have...

Unprecedented childhood trauma hearing in U.S. Congress on July 11 to feature data from new state fact sheets on ACEs prevalence, impacts

A hearing of unprecedented scope and depth (this link will take you to a list of witnesses and all of their statements plus an overview memo on the hearing from committee staff) on ACEs science and childhood trauma — " Identifying, Preventing, and Treating Childhood Trauma: A Pervasive Public Health Issue that Needs Greater Federal Attention " — will be held today in the House Committee on Oversight and Reform. You can watch the live stream at 10:00 am ET through this link . Eleven witnesses...

What's in your soil? - Communities moving to action

Many of you may be familiar with the “Pair of ACEs” from the George Washington School of Public Health and the natural question that comes from this model – “What’s in your soil?” (If you aren’t familiar, learn more here .) Communities across the State of Kansas are starting conversations around, not only the impact of ACEs, but also the larger issues of Prevention, Health Equity, and Trauma-Informed Systems of Care. In June, the TISC team at WSU CEI had the opportunity to facilitate and...

Can you tell me how to get to Sesame Street?

Those of you who know me, know that I ADORE that lovable, furry old monster, Grover. Grover was a deeply comforting character for my family during a very stressful time and continues to serve as a positive symbol for a pretty rough chapter in our life story. While Sesame Street has been supporting preschool learners and their families across the globe for generations, the resources it brings to the communities of this generation have been wonderful to watch grow and develop. From Julia, (who...

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