Children are our most important asset. As South Dakotans, we want our children to grow up in safe, stable environments where they can interact with community members and professionals who care for them.

The Resilient Communities framework provides a comprehensive outline and a suite of tools for community coalitions in order to:

  • Know– Understand your community and build a coalition
  • Respond– Begin to build resiliency in your community
  • Prevent– Continue to build and transform your community to be resilient

The goal is to create resilience in South Dakota families and communities, ensuring our children have safe, stable, and loving environments in which to grow and thrive. The framework outlines a public health approach to example strategies for communities to follow in order to put programs, policies, and trainings in place to help build resiliency for our children and families. As a result, community members and professionals from all sectors become trauma-aware and we can help combat adversity for children.  The outcome is a stronger, healthier community. Together, we can become a Resilient Community.

The Resilient Communities: South Dakota program is facilitated by the SD Center for the Prevention of Child Maltreatment (CPCM).

Adverse childhood experiences

An important component of the Resilient Communities: South Dakota framework is increasing awareness of the impact of early trauma and maltreatment.

Studies show that Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACES) have a direct impact on an individual’s nervous system, which creates long-term health and at-risk behavior linked consequences. We can help prevent ACEs and reduce the negative impacts by working together as community members and professionals.

The impact of ACEs is a public health problem and requires a public health approach. The focus of public health is on the health, safety and well-being of entire populations. A unique aspect of the approach is that it strives to provide the maximum benefit for the largest number of people. Public health draws on a science base that is multi-disciplinary and emphasizes input from diverse sectors including health, education, social services, justice, policy and the private sector.1 Collective action on the part of these stakeholders can help in addressing problems related to adversity in childhood. The Resilient Community framework encourages all members of the community to become informed about ACEs and work together on ACE prevention strategies.