Partnering with FamilyWise to Expand Trauma-Informed Care and Promote Child Wellbeing

Jamie Bonczyk


At 80x3, we're dedicated to fostering trauma-sensitive and culturally responsive child care that empowers every child to thrive. That's why we're thrilled to partner with FamilyWise, an organization with a long-standing commitment to keeping children safe and supporting families in leading healthy, productive lives.

Since its 2020 merger with Minnesota Communities Caring for Children, a leader in child abuse prevention and parent empowerment, FamilyWise has extended its reach statewide, offering a robust array of prevention programs alongside direct intervention services. As our partner, FamilyWise aligns perfectly with our mission to support trauma-informed care and child abuse prevention, ensuring better outcomes for the youngest members of our community.

Our state's early learning resources play an important role in mitigating the effects of adverse childhood experiences. That's why we're excited to share the updates to the Minnesota Early Learning Scholarships Program, effective July 1, 2024. These updates expand the program's priority populations to include children with incarcerated parents, children with parents in substance use or mental health treatment programs, and children who have experienced domestic violence.

This expansion reflects a deepened commitment to addressing Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) and ensuring that every child has access to the support they need to thrive, regardless of their early challenges. “It’s important for people to know that ACEs are not destiny,” shares a FamilyWise staff member. “In my work, I would never go into a community and say, ‘Look at what you’re up against’—through no fault of your own, often—without sharing how protective factors can counter the impact of trauma and historical adversity. It’s about melding all those different pieces of the puzzle.” 

FamilyWise’s NEAR Communities initiative shares the latest science on trauma and resilience to support individual and community-driven efforts to foster understanding, hope, and healing. For more than ten years they’ve trained community members as ACE interface presenters, so they are empowered to raise awareness about the effects of trauma and the promise of prevention and resilience in their communities. As one NEAR Communities participant put it, “We need to remember that as community members, we can hold space for one another in our healing work and that it’s not just the role and responsibility of the mental health professional or the field…We all play a part in healing our communities.” This year, 80x3 is sponsoring 3 NEAR Science Trainings specifically for the early childhood education and care community, which will soon be listed on our website for registration.

As we continue our partnership with FamilyWise and other organizations dedicated to trauma-informed care and child abuse prevention, we remain committed to creating a brighter future for all children. By prioritizing holistic family support, embracing trauma-informed approaches, and fostering equitable outcomes, we can build a more inclusive and resilient society where every child has the opportunity to succeed.

My colleague, Leo Howard III, and I will be presenting on coalitions and efforts across the state addressing major public health issues during the upcoming 7th Annual Growing Resilient Communities Gathering of Collaboratives and Tribal Nations Addressing ACEs on Tuesday, June 18th. We will speak during the second breakout session from 11:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. I highly encourage you to join us for this virtual event! Visit this link to register.

-Jamie Bonczyk, Senior Program Officer at 80x3

About the Author

Jamie Bonczyk is a Program Officer for 80×3: Resilient from the Start, an innovative region-wide initiative to increase capacity to support parenting skills and provide trauma-sensitive early child care in a safe, stable environment that supports child resiliency. Her background includes the roles of executive director of an early learning nonprofit, Head Start administrator, adjunct instructor, author, professional development content creator, and preschool teacher. Jamie has a bachelor’s degree from Minnesota State University Moorhead and a master’s degree from Roosevelt University, both in early childhood education. She completed a Head Start Management Fellowship at UCLA and became a Certified Professional Project Manager through the University of St Thomas.

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