Milwaukee, WI - July 15, 2013 - The Greater Milwaukee Foundation awarded a three year, $450,000 grant to St. Aemilian-Lakeside to support its efforts toward improving child welfare outcomes through trauma-informed care.

Trauma-informed care focuses on understanding how an individual's early traumatic experiences, ranging from abuse and neglect to exposure to domestic violence, impacts their physical, behavioral, social and emotional health. Instead of a traditional treatment approach, which focuses on the behavior resulting from the trauma, trauma-informed care looks at what happened in the first place. In doing so, staff can create an individualized response that uses emerging scientific understanding to help mitigate the impact of the trauma and to help healing begin.

With the support of the Shaw Fund, St. Aemilian will integrate the approach as part of its Integrated Family Services child welfare subsidiary, which provides case management and intensive in-home services for the Bureau of Milwaukee Child Welfare. St. Aemilian expects to serve 250 children and families and train about 1,000 professionals on the approach.

"Traumatic exposure impacts the entire family and creates a greater likelihood that a child will have emotional and behavioral challenges," said Jeannie Fenceroy, a senior program officer for the Greater Milwaukee Foundation and the administrator of the Shaw Fund. "St. Aemilian-Lakeside utilizes a treatment approach that identifies traumatic exposure and mitigates its impact on a child's behavior by partnering with families and other team members to implement a model of care. Trauma-Informed Care is more than just an intervention, but rather a philosophy of how to approach treatment, especially for vulnerable children who have suffered from trauma due to no fault of their own."

St. Aemilian has used the approach over the past five years and is among a handful of agencies nationwide incorporating the practice on a daily basis as part of its programming. It is considered a local leader in trauma-informed care and has coordinated community trainings for social workers, therapists and other professionals.

About the Russell J. and Betty Jane Shaw Fund

The Shaws established their fund in 2000 to support medical research on childhood disease. To date, the fund has awarded $1,677,982 in grants to medical research programs and projects that improve outcomes for children.

About the Greater Milwaukee Foundation

The Greater Milwaukee Foundation is a family of more than 1,000 individual charitable funds, each created by donors to serve the local charitable causes of their choice. Grants from these funds serve people throughout Milwaukee, Waukesha, Ozaukee and Washington counties. Started in 1915, the Foundation is one of the oldest and largest community foundations in the world.


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