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Early Childhood & Education News: Reducing Trauma & Building Resilience in Children and Families

* Cradle Kalamazoo is ready to assist pregnant and newborn families in Kalamazoo County to help reduce infant mortality and help all our babies and families thrive! In one phone call, you can help connect a loved one to crucial services to improve health and infant survival. Call 269-888-KIDS (5437) for programs and resources that support pregnant and newborn families both inside and outside the home.

See the picture of the Cradle Kalamazoo partners moving the work forward at the March Steering Committee – becoming a Best Baby Zone, developing a Fatherhood Initiative, Promoting Safe Sleep, addressing Health Equity. Check out Cradle Kalamazoo’s new website

* Learn about The Fundamentals of Understanding Trauma and Youth Development, Friday, April 14, 2017- 9:15-10:45 AM Kalamazoo Public Library- Central Branch- Van Duesen Room

This training is especially for those working with school-age children and youth to build a common language for understanding trauma and toxic stress; explore the impact such exposure can have on the brain, body, relationships and behavior; and start the conversation about how to understand students through a ‘trauma lens.’ Presenters: Cara Weiler, LMSW and Artrella Cohn, MSW- Communities In Schools of Kalamazoo. Please click on the following link to register

* Screen the Sundance-selected documentary Most Likely to Succeed and hear panel discussion on systemic challenges in education at a free community event, Wednesday, April 12, 6:30-9:30 PM, presented by Western Michigan University’s Office for Sustainability at the Fetzer Center’s Kirsch Auditorium.

The film examines the history of education in the United States, the growing shortcomings of conventional education methods in today’s world, and explores compelling new approaches that aim to revolutionize education. With area educators and diversity experts serving as panelist and discussant Rob Riordan. Please click on the following link to register:

* The Michigan ACE Initiative was launched this month. (See the picture of our partners from the YWCA who were in attendance with our task force.) Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACE) that exceed one’s protective factors and resilience have been identified as the new frontier of public health, because of their direct relationship to the incidence of our major health and social problems (e.g., preschool expulsion, school achievement, substance abuse, mass incarceration, suicide, heart disease, obesity). Building awareness and resilience in our communities will be the focus of this work, which we will partner with to carry our local efforts forward. For more information, go to

– Rochelle Habeck and Regena Nelson, Co-chairs