- Office of the Child Advocate
Media Contact for The Center on Child Wellbeing & Trauma Launches Coaching Academy on Resilience and Trauma
Jessie Brunelle, Legislative and Communications Director
Worchester, MA — This month, the Center on Child Wellbeing and Trauma (CCWT) launched the Coaching Academy on Resilience and Trauma (CART), which will offer funding, along with training and technical assistance, to teams of five to eight individuals in support of their community projects to reduce trauma and promote resilience.
Interested community leaders are invited to register to attend an informational webinar about CART on Wednesday, Oct. 26 at 1:30 p.m. ET. Additional details about how to apply for CART can be found on the CCWT website.
In 2021, the Massachusetts Office of the Child Advocate (OCA) announced the launch of the CCWT in partnership with Commonwealth Medicine, the health care consulting division of UMass Chan Medical School, to respond to the urgent need to address childhood trauma in the commonwealth. The CCWT supports child-serving organizations and systems in becoming trauma-informed and responsive through training, technical assistance, professional learning opportunities and other practical advancement supports.
“The OCA and Commonwealth Medicine recognize that many communities are looking for stronger resources to support children who have experienced trauma—particularly since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Maria Mossaides, director of the Office of the Child Advocate. Through CART, local leaders will be empowered with the tools they need to play a role in the healing process of children who need it.”
“The mission of the CCWT was developed in partnership with OCA to actively respond to children who have experienced trauma in Massachusetts,” said Lisa M. Colombo, DNP, MHA, RN, executive vice chancellor for Commonwealth Medicine. “Training qualified individuals via CART will ensure that we are able to field and react quickly to trauma at a community level to further serve children across the state.”
“Many communities have experienced trauma over the last few years, and providers across various child-serving sectors have done important work during this difficult time,” said Audrey Smolkin, executive director of CCWT. “CART will support cross-sector teams in learning about trauma, race and resilience so they can make progress at a local level.”
Research has shown that the experience of childhood trauma is pervasive. Trauma can have a significant impact on a child’s development, with long-term consequences on physical, mental, and emotional health that can last into adulthood. However, access to beneficial programs and supports can facilitate a child’s healing and recovery.
CCWT at Commonwealth Medicine was founded following a 2020 recommendation of the Massachusetts Childhood Trauma Task Force, which is chaired by the OCA. The Fiscal Year 2023 state budget, which was passed by the Legislature this summer and signed into law by Governor Charlie Baker, invested $3.5 million to continue to support the CCWT.
About the Office of the Child Advocate
The Office of the Child Advocate (OCA) is an independent agency that serves children and families across the Commonwealth. The Office’s goal is to ensure all children receive appropriate, timely and quality services. The OCA collects and analyzes data and makes recommendations to legislators and professionals to improve these services. The Office also takes complaints and provides information to families who receive state services. The Child Advocate chairs the JJPAD Board and the OCA provides staffing for the Board’s work. Learn more about the OCA.
About Commonwealth Medicine
Commonwealth Medicine partners with purposeful organizations, including state Medicaid agencies and health and human services organizations, to improve the health care experience for all, making it more equitable, effective, and accessible. As part of UMass Chan Medical School, Commonwealth Medicine leverages its world-class expertise and decades of experience to develop innovative, actionable solutions that transform every aspect of the health and human services system–from payment and financing to clinical practice and information management. Commonwealth Medicine believes in the power of a shared purpose to make health care better through collaboration.
About UMass Chan Medical School
UMass Chan Medical School, one of five campuses of the University of Massachusetts system, comprises the T.H. Chan School of Medicine; the Morningside Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences; the Tan Chingfen Graduate School of Nursing; Commonwealth Medicine, a public service consulting division; and MassBiologics, the only nonprofit, FDA-licensed manufacturer of vaccines, biologics and viral vector gene therapies in the United States. UMass Chan’s mission is to advance the health and wellness of our diverse communities throughout Massachusetts and across the world by leading and innovating in education, research, health care delivery and public service. In doing so, it has built a reputation as a world-class research institution and as a leader in primary care education, perennially ranked in the top 10 percent of medical schools for primary care by U.S. News and World Report. UMass Chan attracts more than $300 million annually in research funding, placing it among the top 50 medical schools in the nation. In 2021, the Medical School received a $175 million donation from The Morningside Foundation and was renamed UMass Chan Medical School.