Six more local organizations will receive training through Louisville’s Trauma Resilient Community project

February 23, 2021

Additional backbone agencies will be trained to promote healing and recovery in west and south Louisville communities.

LOUISVILLE, Ky. -- Six more community partners are receiving training in the Trauma Resilient Community (TRC) Model to promote resilience and equity for Louisville families and young people most affected by race-based trauma, community violence, and civil unrest in west and south Louisville.

As a part of this project funded by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration’s (SAMHSA) Resiliency in Communities After Stress and Trauma (ReCAST) Grant, six agencies were selected to receive training and support to implement the Trauma Resilient Community (TRC) Model within their agencies. The agencies joining the project are Backside Learning Center, Boys & Girls Haven, Change Today Change Tomorrow, Hope Collaborative, La Casita Center, and Survivor’s Corner.

The Trauma Resilient Community Project, led by Metro’s Office for Safe and Healthy Neighborhoods (OSHN), uses a community-based approach to build a trauma-informed system of care to better serve children and families affected by trauma. This training will help develop the knowledge and skills of

people who respond to, make referrals, and provide services to some of the city’s most vulnerable residents. 

 “It's important that our community partners can understand, recognize, and respond to the effects of trauma within a culture that promotes empowerment, safety, and healing for residents,” said OSHN Director Monique Williams. “As a city, we are in desperate need of healing from many recent traumatic events over this past year, so we are excited and grateful to partner with these six new agencies that will be a part of that healing process for many of the children and families across our city.”

Backbone agencies are key community partners selected to participate in the training based on their ability to demonstrate commitment, collaboration, and partnership in implementing the TRC Model within their agencies, and ultimately, the community. This project’s overarching goal is to build trauma-responsive organizations equipped to manage the detrimental effects often experienced by those who provide care to individuals who have experienced serious trauma. Many of these professionals themselves experience compassion fatigue, vicarious trauma, secondary traumatic stress, and burnout. 

Hope Collaborative Executive Director and Chief Empowerment Officer Marita Willis said she is thrilled to be one of the six agencies selected for training with the Louisville TRC Project to enhance their mission “to bring hope, unity, and healing to our community.”

“Every day we (Hope Collaborative) serve people that are living with trauma in their lives from Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs), violence, war, poverty, and a variety of other atrocities faced by immigrants and refugees including the process of resettlement in a new country; and the current traumas of living through a worldwide pandemic and dealing with systemic racism in our country,” Willis said.  “As a backbone agency of the TRC Project, our entire staff will receive valuable education and training that will allow us to better spread hope to our community through the trauma-informed programs and services we offer.”   

Over the next three years, the Louisville TRC Project’s backbone agencies will work with OSHN’s private-sector partner, the Center for Trauma Resilient Communities (CTRC), to customize an approach for each agency to move from understanding basic trauma theory to becoming a trauma-resilient organization.  CTRC also provides workforce development by helping the “helpers” mitigate chronic stress and secondary trauma, building resilience and supporting leaders to implement structures for safety, self-care, and wellness.

In 2019, the Louisville TRC Project selected 12 backbone agencies, but due to COVID-19 furloughs and lack of capacity, some transitioned off the project. In October 2020, the project led another round of applications, and six were selected to join. Currently, the Louisville TRC Project has 32 certified trainers and hopes to add 30 more through this new round of backbone agencies.

The Louisville TRC Project has additional components, including a Clinical Team, housed within Seven Counties Services, Youth Mental Health First Aid Training (psychoeducation program) managed by OSHN, and the Research and Evaluation Team led by the University of Louisville’s Kent School of Social Work. SAMHSA’s federal grant was first announced in 2018 by Mayor Greg Fischer and officials with the University of Louisville’s Kent School of Social Work and Seven Counties Services (formerly Centerstone). 

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