Boys & Girls Clubs Becoming Trauma-Informed and ACEs-Aware

November 4, 2022
For immediate release
Media contact: Cara Scarola Hansen
Center for Child Counseling Public Relations Counsel

Darla Mullenix from CFCC leads Michael Connors, Mary Freitas, Victor Rivera, and Jaene Miranda from BGCPBC in a brain game.

Boys & Girls Clubs Becoming Trauma-Informed and ACEs-Aware
Center for Child Counseling launches training and starts with the Board of Directors

As part of Center for Child Counseling’s (CFCC) mission to build trauma-informed communities, the local nonprofit recently launched a training series with the Boys & Girls Clubs of Palm Beach County in their effort to become a trauma-informed organization.

According to Dr. Robert Block, former president of American Academy of Pediatrics, “Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) are the single greatest unaddressed public health threat facing our nation today.”

45% of U.S. children have at least one ACE; 10% have three or more. Research indicates a strong correlation between high ACE scores and health outcomes. Adults with four or more ACEs have five times the depression risk, ten times the intravenous drug use, and 12 times the suicide rate. On average, they die 20 years younger than those with no ACEs.

Research also shows ACEs are not destiny and there are pathways to healing and wellness through buffering relationships and effective, early intervention.

Promoting a trauma-informed workforce with demonstrated knowledge and skills is an important component to comprehensively addressing ACEs in communities and improving long-term health and wellness outcomes.

“For better or worse, we all bring our childhood experiences with us into our adult relationships. Unresolved adversity and trauma can have direct impacts. Stress can overload the ability to manage emotions, not only impacting interactions with children but also with colleagues. If you care about your staff burnout, turnover, and your bottom line, you need to care about ACEs,” stated Renée Layman, CEO of Center for Child Counseling.

Through the Center’s PACEs (Positive and Adverse Childhood Experiences) and Trauma-Informed Care Training, CFCC’s CEO and designated leaders provide a customized training schedule to the organization being trained and begin with the CEO, Board of Directors, and leadership team. On Friday, October 28, 2022, CFCC started the training for the Boys & Girls Clubs with its 33-member Board of Directors.

A shared language and understanding from the CEO and throughout all levels of an organization promotes a culture that truly shifts mindsets–providing optimal support for staff that in turn promotes the resilience and wellbeing of children that comes from healthy child-caregiver relationships. It is critical that all adults are equipped with trauma-informed training, strategies, and skills to be able to have trauma-informed conversations with children, youth, and families about difficult things.

“We are most grateful to Renée and her amazing team for the work they are doing in our community and being a part of our recent board retreat as we laid the foundation for a better future at the Boys & Girls Clubs of Palm Beach County. We look forward to the continued training for all constituents of the Boys & Girls Clubs,” expressed Jaene Miranda, CEO of Boys & Girls Clubs of Palm Beach County.

Next, CFCC will train the Boys & Girls Clubs’ leadership team and then 400+ staff members. The 20 Boys & Girls Clubs throughout Palm Beach County serve more than 10,000 children ages 6-18.

This training is part of CFCC’s overall goal of supporting child-serving organizations in becoming trauma-informed and has been funded through a grant from the Community Foundation of Palm Beach and Martin Counties to promote child and adolescent resilience and equity.

For more information on Center for Child Counseling and its PACEs and Trauma-Informed Care Training for childcare centers, schools, and organizations, visit: centerforchildcounseling.org/traumainformedcare.


Advisory for May 20: Justice Pariente to Lead the Fight Against ACEs in Statewide Pane

Justice Barbara Pariente to Lead the Fight Against ACEs in Statewide Panel on Thursday, May 20


Former Florida Supreme Court Justice Barbara Pariente is leading the fight against adverse childhood experiences (ACEs) as the moderator of Part One of a statewide panel and resource series hosted by Center for Child Counseling (CFCC) on Thursday, May 20 at 10:30 AM. CFCC has developed this new action series in response to the pandemic and the urgent need to move forward policies and practices that support children’s mental health and resilience. 

Research shows that ACEs are the root cause of many crises our communities face. Gun violence, domestic abuse, overflowing jails, homelessness, child abuse, addiction, chronic disease, and mental illness–compounded by systemic racism, adverse community environments, and now, the COVID-19 pandemic.

Congresswoman Lois Frankel will offer opening remarks about the importance of community leadership in treating and preventing ACEs by using a public health approach and building trauma-informed communities. 

This exclusive, virtual event for system, business, philanthropic, civic, and school leaders aims to combat childhood trauma and adversity within families and communities through education, discourse, action, and advocacy. CFCC is excited to have this important conversation during Mental Health Awareness Month and more specifically on May 20th where everyone in Palm Beach County is encouraged to Get Your Green On to support mental health.

The panelists include:

Dr. Eugenia Millender, Associate Professor, Florida State University
Dr. Mimi Graham, Director of Florida State University Center for Prevention and Early Intervention Policy
Dr. Shannon Fox-Levine, President at Palm Beach Pediatrics and President of the Pediatric Society of Palm Beach County
Judge Kathleen J. Kroll, Circuit Court Judge in the 15th Judicial Circuit in Palm Beach County
Kathy Leone, Vice Chairman of the Community Alliance of Palm Beach County
Julie Fisher Cummings, Philanthropist, Board Chair Community Foundation of Palm Beach and Martin Counties

Note: there is no fee for this virtual event. Register early as capacity is limited.

Partnership sponsors who are leading the fight in making this important and necessary panel conversation possible include: Florida Association for Infant Mental Health, Ward Damon Attorneys at Law, Keiser University, GL HOMES, The Florida Center, and Lesser, Lesser, Landy & Smith.

CFCC’s Fighting ACEs initiative to build trauma-informed communities is made possible with the generous support of Quantum Foundation, Community Foundation for Palm Beach and Martin Counties, and private donors.

Thursday, May 20, 2021
10:30 AM – 12:00 PM

Click to register to attend this virtual event. 

MEDIA CONTACT:                 
Cara Scarola Hansen
(561) 632-6747

Center for Child Counseling has been building the foundation for playful, healthful, and hopeful living for children and families in Palm Beach County since 1999. Its services focus on preventing and healing the effects of adverse experiences and toxic stress on children, promoting resiliency and healthy family, school, and community relationships.


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