DECEMBER 7, 2020  |  PRESS RELEASE

Origins Training & Consulting has received grant funds from the Office of the California Surgeon General (CA-OSG) and the Department of Health Care Services (DHCS) to participate in the state’s ACEs Aware initiative. In partnership with Eisner Health, Origins  will be developing a practice  paper to share learnings from Eisner’s experience developing a trauma-informed approach. Origins will also be providing trainings to support the integration of a trauma-informed approach through the Community Clinic Association of Los Angeles County (CCALAC) to promote the ACEs Aware initiative among the Medi-Cal provider community in Los Angeles. A total of $14.3 million was awarded to 100 organizations throughout the state to extend the reach and impact of the ACEs Aware initiative. ACEs Aware seeks to change and save lives by helping Medi-Cal providers understand the importance of screening for Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) and training them to respond with trauma-informed care.

The ACEs Aware grants will provide funding to organizations to design and implement training, provider engagement, and education activities for providers and organizations that serve Medi-Cal beneficiaries. “We are looking forward to working in partnership with this amazing group of community leaders to further our efforts to help health care providers become ACEs Aware,” said California Surgeon General Dr. Nadine Burke Harris. “This work is critical, now more than ever, given the stress so many Californians are experiencing as a result of COVID-19 and the role of racial injustice as a risk factor for toxic stress. A trauma-informed health care workforce is vital for helping our state heal.”

The grant funding will provide critical support to community organizations serving Medi-Cal providers and beneficiaries, which have been experiencing increased stress during the COVID-19 emergency. Grant activities will augment California’s efforts, underway since the summer of 2019, to develop provider training and engage providers, including the promotion of payments to Medi-Cal providers for screening their patients for ACEs. Added Dr. Karen Mark, DHCS Medical Director: “DHCS is committed to preserving and improving the overall health and well-being of all Californians. The ACEs Aware initiative is a vital part of the Medi-Cal program’s response to the COVID-19 emergency. These grants will help us reach Medi-Cal providers who serve diverse and often at-risk populations throughout the state, and will help to ensure that Medi-Cal members receive the high-quality, integrated care that every Californian deserves.” Funding for the ACEs Aware grants was previously authorized in the 2019-20 budget using Proposition 56 funds for provider training on how to conduct ACE screening in the Medi-Cal population. In light of the COVID-19 emergency, the grant funding will provide critical support to the community organizations serving Medi-Cal providers and beneficiaries.

“We are thrilled to providings trainings to the Los Angeles Medi-Cal community on integrating a trauma-informed approach and also to share the learnings from Eisner’s experience with this approach with other organizations who are embarking on this journey,” said Origins Co-Founder Lori Chelius.

The full list of ACEs Aware grantees is available on the ACEs Aware Website.

_________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

About Origins

Origins Training & Consulting supports leaders in their journey to build more resilient organizations and communities through the integration of a trauma-informed approach. Our work is informed by the original Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACE) study, the neurobiology of toxic stress, the impact of systemic trauma, and the science of resilience. We provide training and consulting services to executives, management and supervisors, direct service professionals and paraprofessionals, caregivers, and community members across sectors aimed at shifting the narrative of how we understand health and behavior. Our approach is centered on the foundational role of organizational culture and emphasizes the importance of internal practices and staff wellness when implementing a trauma-informed and healing approach.

About ACEs Aware

Led by Dr. Nadine Burke Harris, California Surgeon General, and Dr. Karen Mark, Medical Director for DHCS, the ACEs Aware initiative offers Medi-Cal providers core training, screening tools, clinical protocols, and payment for screening children and adults for Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs), which are stressful or  traumatic experiences people have by age 18 that were identified in the landmark ACE Study. ACEs describe 10 categories of adversities in three domains – abuse, neglect, and/or household dysfunction. ACEs are strongly associated with at least nine out of 10 of the leading causes of death in the United States. Part of Governor Gavin Newsom’s California for All initiative, the goal of ACEs Aware is to reduce ACEs and toxic stress by half in one generation. Follow ACEs Aware on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Instagram.

Office of the California Surgeon General

The role of California Surgeon General was created in 2019 by Governor Gavin Newsom to advise the Governor, serve as a leading spokesperson on public health matters, and drive solutions to the state’s most pressing public health challenges. As California’s first Surgeon General, Dr. Nadine Burke Harris has established early childhood, health equity, and ACEs and toxic stress as key priorities.

California Department of Health Care Services

California Department of Health Care Services DHCS is the backbone of California’s health care safety net, helping millions of low-income and disabled Californians each and every day. The mission of DHCS is to provide Californians with access to affordable, integrated, high-quality health care, including medical, dental, mental health, substance use treatment services, and long-term care. DHCS’ vision is to preserve and improve the overall health and well-being of all Californians. DHCS funds health care services for about 13 million Medi-Cal beneficiaries.

 

 

DECEMBER 7, 2020  |  PRESS RELEASE

Origins Training & Consulting has received grant funds from the Office of the California Surgeon General (CA-OSG) and the Department of Health Care Services (DHCS) to participate in the state’s ACEs Aware initiative. In partnership with Eisner Health, Origins  will be developing a practice  paper to share learnings from Eisner’s experience developing a trauma-informed approach. Origins will also be providing trainings to support the integration of a trauma-informed approach through the Community Clinic Association of Los Angeles County (CCALAC) to promote the ACEs Aware initiative among the Medi-Cal provider community in Los Angeles. A total of $14.3 million was awarded to 100 organizations throughout the state to extend the reach and impact of the ACEs Aware initiative. ACEs Aware seeks to change and save lives by helping Medi-Cal providers understand the importance of screening for Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) and training them to respond with trauma-informed care.

The ACEs Aware grants will provide funding to organizations to design and implement training, provider engagement, and education activities for providers and organizations that serve Medi-Cal beneficiaries. “We are looking forward to working in partnership with this amazing group of community leaders to further our efforts to help health care providers become ACEs Aware,” said California Surgeon General Dr. Nadine Burke Harris. “This work is critical, now more than ever, given the stress so many Californians are experiencing as a result of COVID-19 and the role of racial injustice as a risk factor for toxic stress. A trauma-informed health care workforce is vital for helping our state heal.”

The grant funding will provide critical support to community organizations serving Medi-Cal providers and beneficiaries, which have been experiencing increased stress during the COVID-19 emergency. Grant activities will augment California’s efforts, underway since the summer of 2019, to develop provider training and engage providers, including the promotion of payments to Medi-Cal providers for screening their patients for ACEs. Added Dr. Karen Mark, DHCS Medical Director: “DHCS is committed to preserving and improving the overall health and well-being of all Californians. The ACEs Aware initiative is a vital part of the Medi-Cal program’s response to the COVID-19 emergency. These grants will help us reach Medi-Cal providers who serve diverse and often at-risk populations throughout the state, and will help to ensure that Medi-Cal members receive the high-quality, integrated care that every Californian deserves.” Funding for the ACEs Aware grants was previously authorized in the 2019-20 budget using Proposition 56 funds for provider training on how to conduct ACE screening in the Medi-Cal population. In light of the COVID-19 emergency, the grant funding will provide critical support to the community organizations serving Medi-Cal providers and beneficiaries.

“We are thrilled to be providing trainings to the Los Angeles Medi-Cal community on integrating a trauma-informed approach and also to share the learnings from Eisner’s experience with this approach with other organizations who are embarking on this journey,” said Origins Co-Founder Lori Chelius.

The full list of ACEs Aware grantees is available on the ACEs Aware Website.

_________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

About Origins

Origins Training & Consulting supports leaders in their journey to build more resilient organizations and communities through the integration of a trauma-informed approach. Our work is informed by the original Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACE) study, the neurobiology of toxic stress, the impact of systemic trauma, and the science of resilience. We provide training and consulting services to executives, management and supervisors, direct service professionals and paraprofessionals, caregivers, and community members across sectors aimed at shifting the narrative of how we understand health and behavior. Our approach is centered on the foundational role of organizational culture and emphasizes the importance of internal practices and staff wellness when implementing a trauma-informed and healing approach.

About ACEs Aware

Led by Dr. Nadine Burke Harris, California Surgeon General, and Dr. Karen Mark, Medical Director for DHCS, the ACEs Aware initiative offers Medi-Cal providers core training, screening tools, clinical protocols, and payment for screening children and adults for Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs), which are stressful or  traumatic experiences people have by age 18 that were identified in the landmark ACE Study. ACEs describe 10 categories of adversities in three domains – abuse, neglect, and/or household dysfunction. ACEs are strongly associated with at least nine out of 10 of the leading causes of death in the United States. Part of Governor Gavin Newsom’s California for All initiative, the goal of ACEs Aware is to reduce ACEs and toxic stress by half in one generation. Follow ACEs Aware on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Instagram.

Office of the California Surgeon General

The role of California Surgeon General was created in 2019 by Governor Gavin Newsom to advise the Governor, serve as a leading spokesperson on public health matters, and drive solutions to the state’s most pressing public health challenges. As California’s first Surgeon General, Dr. Nadine Burke Harris has established early childhood, health equity, and ACEs and toxic stress as key priorities.

California Department of Health Care Services

California Department of Health Care Services DHCS is the backbone of California’s health care safety net, helping millions of low-income and disabled Californians each and every day. The mission of DHCS is to provide Californians with access to affordable, integrated, high-quality health care, including medical, dental, mental health, substance use treatment services, and long-term care. DHCS’ vision is to preserve and improve the overall health and well-being of all Californians. DHCS funds health care services for about 13 million Medi-Cal beneficiaries.

 

 

 

The past, the present, and the future are unique to each of us and that journey has brought us to where we are today. You may be reflecting on this present moment and wondering, “Where do I fit in the creation of a new normal? Am I a changemaker?” In this interview, you will get to know Kamakshi Hart MA, the creator of Origin’s latest course for personal and professional development, The Changemaker. As Andi and Kamakshi share experiences about awareness, mindfulness, and non-linear healing, you will learn more about the people behind the trainings here at Origins.

(Pictured above: A wise girl and her best friend)

October 8, 2020|  By: Lori Chelius MBA/MPH

“So I want to get this straight…in our family, when something gets tough, we just give it away?”

That’s what Jill Stamm’s daughter, who was six years old at the time, asked her parents after they concluded they would have to find another home for their rambunctious puppy who was destroying furniture and eating everything in sight.

Stamm was stunned. That was not a value she embraced at all. In fact, with another older daughter with multiple handicaps, she deeply understood the importance of commitment and love, even when things are hard.

Out of the mouth of babes.

That question changed everything. It led to a very explicit value in Stamm’s family that has even passed along to her grandkids (her daughter is now a parent herself): “We don’t turn away from tough stuff. We face things head on.”

In a recent webinar hosted by Origins– “A Trauma-Informed Approach: Three Myths Busted”–we explored the critical role of values in building and sustaining a healing culture. Stamm, who is the Prevention and Brain Science Specialist at Arizona’s Children Association and co-founder of New Directions Institute for Infant Brain Development, shared how the value of not turning away when things get tough became a bedrock for her family across generations. It influenced her in many ways in both her personal and professional life and even contributed to going back to complete her PhD at age 50.

One definition of culture is a “set of shared attitudes, values, goals, or practices that characterize an institution or organization.” All organizations, communities, and families have a culture, whether it has been created intentionally or not. Part of being intentional is articulating these values that really underlie your culture. The puppy incident led Stamm to make explicit a value that was already implicit in her family.

In our upcoming Resilience Champion Live course, we explore the critical role of culture in implementing a trauma-informed approach and provide tools to help you intentionally develop the culture in your own unique setting. This six-week course is for leaders who want to integrate a trauma-informed approach in their setting. Weeks 1-2 of this course provide an overview of the key concepts behind a trauma-informed approach from our Basics course. Weeks 3-6 focus on translating those concepts into action.  Join us for this series starting on Wednesday, Oct. 14th from 10-11:30 PT. 

(And, by the way, the puppy stayed).

mental health awareness tree

BY 

When I was an adolescent and young adult, I struggled with depression. As I reflect back on that time, so much of what I was experiencing was deeply tied to coming to terms with my sexuality. Growing up in the 1980’s in a relatively conservative town, I was closeted (even to myself) until I was a young adult. The pain and fear of being different, of not belonging, of being judged or rejected for who I was more than my adolescent brain could wrap its conscious head around. To protect myself from being “found out,” I often turned inward, keeping a safe distance from many.

 

In a talk by Gabor Mate, he says: “As a physician I have witnessed and treated what we call mental illness; as a person I have experienced it. I say ‘what we call mental illness’, because disease is a very narrow perspective from which to view a complex process, one that cannot be reduced to subjective symptoms, observed behaviors or to the biology of an individual human being’s brain and nervous system. Yes, this process entails suffering…But suffering is not the same as disease.”

 

I think a lot about that line–”suffering is not the same as disease” in terms of my own experience. Was my experience with depression a “mental illness”? Or was it suffering? Are they the same thing?

 

May is mental health awareness month. With the health and economic impacts of the pandemic continuing to grow, it certainly seems timely to raise awareness on the importance of mental well-being. 

 

But what exactly is “mental health?” The National Institute of Mental Health defines their mission as “to transform the understanding and treatment of mental illnesses through basic and clinical research, paving the way for prevention, recovery, and cure.” But is mental health simply the absence of an illness?

 

We are only beginning to understand the long-term impacts of the collective trauma of the global pandemic

 

And there is a lot of suffering.

 

As of May 20th, the official U.S. death count has passed 90,000 and continues to climb. Families and friends are often unable to say good-bye to their loved ones in person or grieve the loss in many of the ways people often do. Economic devastation and uncertainty are rampant. The US economy lost 20.5 million jobs in April alone. Widespread school closures have left many kids vulnerable while they are home with stressed out parents, often cut off from friends and community connections. The health and economic impacts of COVID-19 disproportionately affects communities of color, revealing and often amplifying underlying inequities.

 

Amidst this suffering, there is a window to reexamine how we think about and the language we use for mental health. 

 

Psychiatrist and Holocaust-survivor Viktor Frankl once wrote that “an abnormal reaction to an abnormal situation is normal behavior.”

 

That quote seems pretty relevant right now as we all respond to this collective trauma. For some of us, those responses might include behaviors such as short tempers, obsessively reading the news, or panic buying. Other responses might be more physiological–sleep disruptions, headaches, or upset stomachs. The science behind ACEs and a trauma-informed approach can help us understand these responses as normal responses to an abnormal situation. A trauma-informed approach recognizes that those responses are symptoms, often symptoms of underlying suffering. 

 

As the impacts of the coronavirus continue to unfold, likely for years and even generations, the importance of emotional wellness for kids and adults should be a huge priority.  But in doing so, let’s not pathologize our normal responses to a very abnormal situation. Grief is not an illness. Fear is not illness. 

 

In the words of Gabor Mater,  “Let’s all drop the pretense that we are either normal, or abnormal. We are all in the same support group: ordinary people who must deal with the struggles that come with being human.”  And, as Origins co-founder Andi Fetzner likes to say, “being a human is hard.”

 

Amen.

________________________________________________________________________________________________

Lori Chelius is a co-founder of Origins Training & Consulting. Origins helps educators, health care professionals, social service workers, and other leaders integrate a trauma-informed approach into their work so they can build more resilient organizations and communities. She lives in California with her wife, three kids, and their dog, Oliver. Learn more about Origins’ and its online training offerings at www.originstraining.org.

In this video, Andi will be talking about how Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) are not the only way that stress can become toxic (insert pandemic here). Understanding our origins (see what we did there) can help us understand what we’re going through can make all of us feel less alone (and less weird).

At Origins, we encourage self-reflection as we navigate advocacy during this social justice revolution. While we are all in this storm together, we recognize the reality that we are not all in the same boat. In scrolling through social media this last week, I came upon a poem that speaks to this truth. The author is unknown.

/BY 

Sitting on my bookshelf in my office is a framed copy of Time Magazine from April 14, 1997. On the cover is a picture of Ellen DeGeneres with the headline “Yep, I’m Gay,”

Read more

/BY 

Anyone who attended last year’s (2017) ACEs Conference hosted by the Center for Youth Wellness knows there was an exceptional line-up of speakers. From Nadine Burke-Harris and her welcoming remarks to Bryan Stevenson’s closing keynote, there were many inspirational examples of work being done to push the ACEs movement “from awareness to action.” The format of the conference also encouraged interaction of attendees, which was a strong reminder that sparks of change can originate in unexpected places. I noticed this even before the conference started. As I was waiting in line to pick up my badge, I struck up a conversation with the person standing next to me in line. This experience was a reminder that you just never know who you will meet and what type of journey you might end up on together.

Read more