“For those looking to help  remove the immense barriers stopping our children from succeeding in school and in life, understanding the impact of adverse childhood experiences is the first and most important step” – Paul Holzer

It didn’t take long after viewing the documentary, Resilience: The Biology of Stress & The Science of Hope, for Paul Diego Holzer to begin formulating ideas on how to push the movie’s message deeper into the Hartford community.

The movie Resilience reveals the science on how Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) – such as being exposed to community violence, abuse, neglect, and even parental divorce – can alter brain development and have lifelong effects on health. The ACE Study – the largest public health study you never heard of — shows that childhood trauma is very, very common, cuts across socio-economic strata, and is now understood to be one of the leading causes of everything from heart disease and cancer to substance abuse and depression.

Educators are increasingly recognizing the importance of addressing ACEs because of proven negative impacts they have on students’ educational path to becoming successful in school and career. Bringing more insights on ACEs into the classroom will make a tremendous difference in the experience and outcomes of Hartford students.

As the builder of cross-sector coalitions, it has been easy for us over the past eight years to see how trauma in the lives of children and families is impacting the system as a whole.  The weight of extremely stressful experiences is something we all feel — from educators to social workers to advocates to policy makers to after school providers to those working in the Juvenile Justice system and healthcare providers.

How Can We Help?

Not really a spoiler alert, but the story doesn’t end with just the awareness of adverse childhood experiences; the aim is that there is something we can all do about trauma in our city.  At each stage of development from childhood to adulthood, there is appropriate support and care the community – not just healthcare providers – the whole community– can provide.

To start, we’re inviting you to a special screening of Resilience co-hosted with The Village, the Clifford Beers Clinic, the Collaboratory on School & Child Health, and Community First Charter School, which is building into their design a six-week teacher development program to build teacher capacity in understanding the widespread impact of trauma and the potential paths for healing.

The documentary screening will be followed by a panel discussion with:

Alice M. Forrester (Moderator)

Chief Executive Officer, Clifford Beers Clinic

Sandra M. Chafouleas 


Board of Trustees Distinguished Professor & Co-Director of the Collaboratory on School and Child Health, University of Connecticut

Timothy R. Goodwin

Executive Director Hartford City Mission, Founder of Community First School

Brother Kelvin Lovejoy

Youth & Community Advocate

Trudi Lebron

Founder and Director of Scriptflip!

Catherine G. Corto-Mergins

Director of Training and The Village Collaborative Trauma Center & MDFT Trainer & Consultant


Bottom Line

The film screening and panel discussion are free and open to all.

RESILIENCE: The Biology of Stress & The Science Hope

Wednesday, July 26, 2017

9:00am – 11:00am

Chrysalis Center

255 Homestead Avenue, Hartford, CT

Breakfast and ample parking provided

RSVP to: Luis Olmo-Rivera [email protected]


Please join us, and please RSVP!