From Risk to Resilience: What Youth Need to Thrive - May 8, 2013 Symposium
On May 8th, Stoneleigh Foundation hosted a conversation about what it takes to move youth from risk to resilience. To continue the conversation, share messages from the event, and inspire all to find ways to individually and collectively improve the well-being of our children, we have created this web page that includes resources from the event.
Please consider this infographic depicting risk factors as a starting point for the opportunities we all have to help youth thrive.
Our diverse panel offered different perspectives on how we can help youth thrive by building resilience. However, it quickly became clear that five unrelated speakers from different sectors and even different cities had the same message: Youth need to be allowed to make mistakes and when they do adults need to treat them with care and dignity. For at the bottom of the problem behavior is often stress, trauma and tragedy. That this is felt disproportionately in high poverty and low resourced communities renounces, rather than justifies, consequence disparity. Without adults understanding the correlation between stress and behavior, troubled youth will continue to cycle through our legal and welfare systems. With resilience, children can triumph over trauma, without it, trauma triumphs.
Now is the time to ask yourself, "What am I going to do today for kids?" It is essential that we unite across systems, sectors and neighborhoods to serve our youth in the context of their family and community needs. In order to achieve the goal of resilience for all of our youth, we must create an ecosystem of connected youth development services that understand how underlying trauma affects behavior.
Stoneleigh is committed to keep the dialogue flowing and facilitate connections. We will continue to blog on the topic, use twitter to spread information and use our convening and funding roles to find solutions that could result in meaningful and sustained changes.
Cathy M. Weiss