A North-Carolina-based foster care provider has been awarded $4 million for a new project targeting a Winston-Salem community.
Crossnore Communities for Children will receive the Resiliency in Communities after Stress and Trauma grant. Funded by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, the money will support a four-year project called We Heal Together. The program is designed to lessen the occurrences and impacts of violence and trauma experienced by east Winston residents.
Among the project’s many goals are reinforcing existing trauma care systems, and raising awareness about mental health risk factors and how to respond appropriately. Crossnore CEO Brett Loftis says they will also be expanding the ongoing work of east Winston’s Embedded Mentoring Program (EMP).
"It’s critical to help making sure children have a safe, supportive voice in their life, someone to listen to them," says Loftis. "All the research really supports that if you have one positive consistent adult in your life, you can build significant resilience to counterbalance some of the things you may have experienced."
Loftis describes the causes behind those negative experiences as multilayered community problems with a strong structural component that requires a multilayered community approach. He says ongoing partnerships with the school district, Action4Equity and Forsyth Futures will help provide tools and platforms that he says will hopefully empower residents to reduce adverse childhood experiences and the toxic stress that accompanies them.
It’s expected that We Heal Together services will ultimately reach 1,200 East Winston participants.