ACE

Resilient CNY: One relationship at a time

Everyone experiences distressing events in their lives. You’ve probably heard about trauma, the emotional response to these events. Our emotional reactions can have long term effects on the way we think, make decisions, and relate to others. Resilience, our natural ability to cope with stress, helps moderate how we respond to adversity. During the 2018-2019 school year, Sanchia A Callender, Inc and our partners worked with Syracuse City School District’s Parent University to equip caregivers of school-aged children and youth, with the resources to recognize trauma driven behavior and build resilience.

The Resilient CNY Trauma-Sensitive Community project started with a recognition that Syracuse’s students and their families needed help in figuring out how to deal with the challenges they regularly experience. I asked Superintendent Jaime Alicea why he found the message about the need to address trauma compelling enough to dedicate district resources to the cause long term. He noted the loss of people, students, that couldn’t be ignored. “Syracuse is a small town,” he said as we chatted in his office in July. “Everything is connected.”

Parent participants in the project found it equally compelling. “We should all do this before we go out in the world to meet people,” reported one parent after the second week of reading Transforming the Difficult Child for book club. We sat around a table in the Sankofa room of Beauchamp Library sharing our thoughts about the week’s reading that focused on recognition, appreciation, attention, trust, and connectedness. We created the book to meet the need for year-round support for learning to build and maintain the kinds of relationships that serve as protective factors against Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACE) and trauma.

During the year-long planning and implementation process of this project, we utilized the support of the Gifford Foundation’s What If Mini-Grant served as a booster for creating change in our community. Our organization is growing thanks to their help. We’ve added two new board members and established relationships with other community partners who share our focus on creating a vibrant community. We are continuing the work of increasing our capacity to build resilience in our community.

Persistence pays off.

Resilient CNY and Parent University Support Families and Students

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Resilience: The Biology of Stress and The Science of Hope chronicles the birth of a new movement among pediatricians, therapists, educators and communities, who are using cutting-edge brain science to disrupt cycles of violence, addiction and disease.

Join us for the free screening of this film Tuesday, November 13, 2018 5:30pm at Syracuse Stage. A panel of education, health, mental health, social services, law enforcement, and community leaders will discuss the impact of Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) in their fields and what steps the Syracuse, NY community can take to address these issues.


The film screening is only the beginning. Each month during the school year, December to June, Resilient CNY is offering family engagement workshops and discussions through Syracuse City School District’s Parent University.

Why ACEs, Trauma, and Resilience? Adverse Childhood Experiences cause trauma that affects health and education. This trauma shows up as behavior in and out of the classroom. By using ACEs to identify and address sources of trauma we build resilient students and families leading to academic success.

Upcoming Events

We have two events scheduled during April so far. First we are working with community partners in Syracuse, NY to provide a study center for students in the city. The Learner's Cafe will have free wifi, computers, a printer, and plenty of coffee to keep learners going in all their endeavors. Open house festivities are on April 8, 2018 3pm-7pm at 501 W Fayette St, Syracuse, NY 13204.

The second is the second in our series of discussions on addressing trauma in the community. Our topic of discussion is the  power or relationships to build resilience. We'll will also be working on building a toolbox of effective relationship building techniques. April 21, 2018 12pm-3pm at 501 W Fayette St, Syracuse, NY 13204.