Facing Trauma & Cultivating Resilience Conference
On May 23, 2019, over 270 people from across the Midwest, as far as Ohio and Wisconsin came to The Children’s and Teachers Foundation of the Chicago Teachers Union to grow in their understanding and competencies around Trauma Responsive Schools and Restorative Practices.
By forging a coalition consisting of CTUF, The Illinois Aces Response Collaborative, Illinois Collaboration on Youth, University of Chicago TREP Project, Center for Childhood Resilience of Northwestern Lurie’s Children’s Hospital, and the Illinois Teachers Federation, the conference was a tour de force on expertise stemming from research and field experience. Speakers came from schools across the Region, Chicago Department of Public Health, CPS, CTU, Chicago Freedom School, and Community and Youth Organizations.
Delegations from Kilmer Elementary, Steinmetz and Southland share about their efforts to be trauma-informed in a filled banquet hall at CTUF.
- Nature of Trauma was the opening presentation by Audrey Stillerman from University of Illinois College of Medicine. She gave great depth and detail on the impact of trauma on a developing brain – socially, emotionally, and physiologically.
- Walking the Talk was a dynamic panel of folks who are making positive changes in their settings by adopting and advancing trauma-informed practices. The panel included Shiela Barlow, the Principal of Powell Elementary School; Octavia Tyson, of the Chicago Department of Public Health, Office of Violence Prevention; Crystal Winfield-Edwards, the Options SEL Specialist; and Assata Lewis, the Student Activist from Kumba Lynx who nearly stole the show.
- Voices from the Field was a discussion led by people on the ground, doing the work in the trenches and forming collaborative alliances between schools, community organizations and public health allies to best serve our young people who are exposed to trauma. Delegations from Kilmer Elementary, Steinmetz and Southland led the discussion
This should be one of the mandatory workshops that we have to take; I truly believe that all staff can assist our children better with this information. – Conference Attendee