The Impact of Adverse Childhood Experiences on our Health

On June 7th, 2018, Mott Children’s Health Center hosted Tuuri Day: ACEs Summit, attended by 425 people from more than 100 organizations. ACEs stands for Adverse Childhood Experiences; these are experiences of varying degrees of trauma. Every community experiences trauma. Dr. Vincent Felitti, a leading researcher on trauma and one of the keynote speakers at the event, shared that ACEs are linked to every chronic illness and social problem that the United States spends billions of dollars on each year.

The good news? ACEs and their consequences can be recognized, treated, and even prevented in the future. Having one caring and stable adult in the life of a child is the key to fostering resiliency.  Additional keynote speakers expanded on successful school and community interventions to support those impacted by ACES. Jim Sporleder, the former principal of Walla Walla High School in Washington State, shared strategies for schools to become more trauma-informed, and Furhut Janssen, D.O., the Assistant Professor of Psychiatry at Central Michigan University, shared what the wider community can do.

Elizabeth Wise, Crim Mindfulness Educator, was part of a panel of local leaders sharing ways the Flint community is supporting resilience. Her presentation focused on the ways the Crim Fitness Foundation is supporting Flint schools and the wider Flint community to utilize a trauma-informed approach to create a more mindful, resilient culture and climate. Through workshops, trainings and events, the Crim’s Team shares mindfulness strategies and practices to deal with everyday stressors, and even traumatic events, in healthier ways.

To learn more about the ACEs study conducted by Dr. Nadine Burke Harris, click here.