First of all, THANKS to everybody who has been working with the ReCAST effort to find ways to support our community. We have spent a lot of time this past year getting to what you want, how community members want to see events and activities happening, and learning about the best ways to use these resources to help Flint keep moving forward.
Where is ReCAST starting, and what is ReCAST doing?
As we have listened to community input, through open sessions, listening at community forums, and outright asking, the Flint ReCAST is supporting resilience by supporting the capacity of our local organizations, leaders, decision makers, youth, families, education teams, and crisis responders to use trauma-informed approaches in their daily lives- both for themselves and when working with (each) other(s). In practice, this means we want to build the foundation for a trauma-informed, and resiliency-informed, community through lots of pathways...As you can imagine, this is not a small task- our marching orders are large, clear, and importantly, doable when we work together.
We also know that there are obvious issues that need to be fixed in Flint...we hear you. We want you to know that there is progress: (1) A clean, safe, and affordable water source is required, and much is being done in the city to make this a reality. (2) Economic security is a major need, and following the local media, we see opportunities coming back to Flint. (3) Flint is growing, and community members want to make sure there continues to be space, resources, and opportunities for everyone who calls Flint home.
We expect that the Flint ReCAST equips our local leaders and decision makers with trauma-informed skills to support decision making that benefits the community broadly, and attends to the unintended consequences that implicitly puts under-resourced community members in even worse situations. We look to you, as members of the community, to identify the viable solutions you want to develop and support, while we provide the tools and capacity you need to create those solutions. Finally, we look to our past generations and our future generations to go forward from here- so we bring community conversation, strategies to boost our decision making capacity, and opportui
What has ReCAST been doing lately? We haven't heard anything...
Back in May 2017, we shared an overview of the Flint ReCAST at the Genesee County Health Department annual conference (we'll make sure you can get them here on the site).
Over the summer of 2017, ReCAST partnered with the Flint YMCA, El Ballet Folklorico Estudiantil, WOW Outreach, Community Based Organization Partners, CAUTION, Berston Field House, Priority Children, and the Trauma Resource Institute to bring programs, activities, information, and resources to Flint residents, families, and community members. These groups have long been active in Flint to make sure kids have safe and supportive spaces to build character assets that help them move forward- like confidence, motivation, self-esteem, and talents (in music, sports, art, and whatever they put their minds to!).
The other big initiative we jump-started in June 2017 was to bring the Community Resiliency Model, or CRM, to the Flint community by working with the Trauma Resource Institute, a non-profit organization that has worked for the last several years to find strategies that we can use in community contexts to support our efforts to put our stressors in their place- and help us make the best decisions to move ourselves (and Flint) forward. CRM is a set of 6 key trauma-informed practical skills, based on our physical body reactions to stressful situations, that help us refocus our attention to our goals in the moment. We were able to get 10 local people trained to share the skills, and look forward to sharing this tool with you- let us know if you're interested!
In August 2017, we launched the small project request for applications, asking for local groups to tell us how to promote trauma-informed approaches and practices throughout the community. We did this because we know that there are many groups in Flint that already know how they help Flint best, through their organizations, their work, and their passions. This first round yielded 17 applications (nearly all will be funded!), and we look forward to working closely with the groups that submitted proposals!
What Benefit Will These Funded Proposals Bring To You, You Ask?
Well, we know these groups do what they do well, and we will work with these groups to build their capacity at trauma-informed local leaders, get them connected with each other, and share with you the great work, programs, and resources they bring to you, your families, and the people you serve.
What's Coming Next?
Well, we are building a calendar of events to tell you about ReCAST sponsored activities, including those led by our community partners. These (so far) include:
We have multiple ReCAST learning activities taking shape to happen in the coming months too, with topics including: