If ever there was a case where a community banded together in order to make drastic changes for the people in the area, Pacific County, Washington is it.
On February 2, the WellSpring Community Network hosted a Building Community Resilience event to bring community leaders together for a training regarding Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) and how to offer trauma-informed care to people they serve. An ACE is a traumatic experience in a person's life occurring before the age of 18 that the person remembers as an adult. In order to find a person’s ACE score, they are asked questions regarding neglect, domestic violence, abuse, divorce, and other events possibly experienced as a child.
Here in Pacific County, there are many different organizations that provide support and services for those who struggle to overcome childhood adversity, but a concrete vision about how to better the community as a whole seemed hazy. This event brought leaders together from sectors such as Health and Medical, Criminal Justice/Law Enforcement, Early Childhood Education, Education, and Youth and Family Support, to collaborate in creating a plan to build community resilience.
The event was fortunate enough to have Laura Porter deliver a presentation about the Foundations of Healthy Generations, ACEs and N.E.A.R Science (Neuroscience, Epigenetics, ACEs and Resilience). By presenting, she was not only able to teach the public about ACEs, but she was able to explain the need for a united goal to increase resiliency in Pacific County.
After the presentation, participants were divided into their sectors where they were able to discuss current trauma-informed practices, as well as brainstorming ways to fill missing resources within their sector. After finding their gaps in resources, local leaders were able to offer ideas to other sectors in order to fulfill the community’s need to implement more trauma-informed care.
By the end of the day, the room was filled with excitement and hope about how the community will benefit from the united front provided through WellSpring’s Community Resilience event.
To learn more about ACEs, visit our ACEs Overview page. To learn more about the event or read notes from participants, go to our Building Community Resilience page.