Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs)

Children’s Network has partnered with the ACEs Task Force of San Bernardino County to address adverse childhood experiences for children in San Bernardino County.

What are ACEs?

Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) are traumatic experiences that activate the stress response. ACEs include child abuse and neglect, domestic violence, substance abuse, mental illness, incarceration and single parenting. In the absence of safe, secure and nurturing relationships, ACEs affect brain development and can interfere with learning, social development and cause long-term health problems.

What is Resilience?

Resilience is the ability to return to being healthy and hopeful after bad things happen. Research shows that if parents provide a safe environment for their children and teach them how to be resilient, that helps reduce the effects of ACEs.

Five Factors to Building Resilience

1. Meeting Basic Needs and Expectations

  • Basic needs e.g. safe housing, nutritious food, appropriate clothing, access to health care, and a good education.
  • A daily routine with consistent family rules.

2. Having Resilient Caregivers

  • Parents who eat well, exercise regularly, get enough sleep, take time to be with adult friends, and go to their own primary care doctor.
  • Important because children have strong mirror neurons.

3. Establishing Secure and Nurturing Relationships

  • By paying attention to a child’s physical and emotional needs, listening to a child’s ideas and experiences, playing and showing love through hugs, kisses, affirmations, and quality time.

4. Building Social Connections

  • Spending time with extended family, friends and/or neighbors helps children develop social connections who become resources in their lives.
  • Also reduces stress for primary caregivers.

5. Learning about Parenting and Social-Emotional Development

  • Learning what children are capable of at different ages.
  • Helping children develop core skills of emotional regulation and executive function.

Children’s Network and the ACEs Task Force have created a list of resources to assist families experiencing ACEs in the hopes of mitigating some of the harmful effects these experiences can bring. Because of the large and diverse size of our county, resources are broken up into regions to allow families to see resources that will be relevant and accessible to them. By following the link for the appropriate region, families and providers will find a continually updated list of help available to them.

ACEs Resources – San Bernardino County

To access resources by region, scan corresponding QR code with mobile device or visit link.