On October 23rd and 24th, Pressley Ridge brought together more than 150 national and regional mental health professionals invested in the advancement of trauma-informed care for the 2019 Building Connections and Hope for the Future Trauma Summit. Bruce D. Perry, MD, PhD, renowned children’s mental health and trauma expert, served as the keynote speaker.
During the two day summit, participants shared information, explored successful strategies and engaged in a deep dialogue on sustaining hope for those who have experienced significant adversity and trauma. Day one explored innovative practices and featured a two-part keynote presentation from Dr. Perry that focused on how trauma interrupts human development and what therapists can do to help children who have experienced trauma.
Michelle McMurray, MSW also discussed her personal experiences surrounding mental health and culture and how it has led her to a compassionate pursuit of system change. She spoke of her efforts to improve access to high-quality physical and mental health care for low-income and racial and ethnic minority populations and to strengthen small, community-based nonprofits.
Dr. Perry and Ms. McMurray were featured in a panel discussion around trauma-informed care and future action, which also included Walter Smith, Jr., PhD, founder of The Western Pennsylvania Family Center and former executive director of Family Resources, a child abuse treatment and prevention organization in Pittsburgh, PA; and Dr. Dennis Daley, PhD, who most recently served as Senior Clinical Director of Substance Use Services, Behavioral Health Integration Division, UPMC Insurance Division.
On the second day, summit participants built on their collaborative vision of what trauma-infused care means and discussed ways to act on their vision.
Trauma and adversity have been shown to directly correlate with an increase in addiction, systematic racism, poverty and poor mental health. As a leader in trauma-informed care, Pressley Ridge continuously seeks to improve the services we offer to children and families impacted by adversity. The goal of this summit was to create a shared power that will advance policy and practice from trauma-informed to trauma-infused institutions.
"Our long history of serving children and families affected by trauma has led us toward infusing trauma-informed practices into everything we do. We are privileged to be able to bring together our region's leading social service providers along with national experts to collaborate and create communities that thrive," said Susanne Cole, President and CEO of Pressley Ridge.
Dr. Perry is highly-regarded for having developed the Neurosequential Model, which is a developmentally-informed, biologically-respectful approach to working with at-risk children and their families that has revolutionized the trauma-informed community. Pressley Ridge is in the final stages of certification as a Neurosequential Model of Therapeutics flagship site through the ChildTrauma Academy.
Students and staff at the Pressley Ridge School for Autism and School for the Deaf began their school year in the much-anticipated brand new facility. Under construction for the past year, this school was designed from the ground up with the help of Deaf and autism experts to meet the needs of these students. After more than two decades, the students and staff finally have a permanent school with the tools they need to learn effectively and reach their potential.
Pressley Ridge has been awarded a Top Workplaces 2019 honor by The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, ranking 8th in the Large Companies category. The list is based solely on employee feedback through an anonymous survey that measures several aspects of workplace culture, including alignment, execution, connection and more.
Thanks to our dedicated and passionate employees for recognizing us with this honor!
Executive Director of Western PA, Jesse McLean, has been honored with two prestigious awards in recognition of his service to his community and his field. Bynums Marketing & Communications, Inc. and BCC Ministries named Jesse a 2019 awardee of the Ninth Annual Pittsburgh Circle of Courage Awards, recognizing him as a Pittsburgh individual that has displayed faith, courage and leadership in his field. Jesse has also been awarded the 2019 Jennie A. Carter Award from California University of Pennsylvania for exemplifying Jennie’s legacy of life-long service and dedication to education, students, and California University of Pennsylvania. Congratulations to Jesse on his well-deserved honors!
The Northern Ohio programs' Men of Honor & Integrity Council spent time this summer constructing a 'Free Little Library' for the Cleveland office and living the values of Re-ED. The Group is Important in these young men's lives. This project allowed them to gain basic carpentry Competencies that Make a Difference in their futures, as well as allowing them to serve the Community that is Important in their lives. Now, when youth and families visit the Cleveland office, they will be able to pick up and enjoy and new book.
In total, 22 students accepted their diplomas from the Pressley Ridge schools this year.
May is Mental Health Month, and we are doing our part to help increase awareness of the connection between physical and mental health.
Mental Health America offers these suggestions for:
Check back throughout the month for more mental health tips and facts.
Click here for more information on community-based and outpatient mental health services offered by Pressley Ridge.
April is National Child Abuse Prevention Month, and the theme for 2019 is Strong and Thriving Families. The U.S. Department of Health & Human Services and Children's Bureau have assembled some tips and recommendations for strengthening your family.
Download the fact sheet here.
Keeping Your Family Strong
Every family has strengths, and every family faces challenges. When you are under stress—the car breaks down, you or your partner lose a job, your child’s behavior is difficult, or even when the family is experiencing a positive change, such as moving into a new home—sometimes it takes a little extra help to get through the day. Protective factors are the strengths and resources that families draw on when life gets difficult. Building on these strengths is a proven way to keep the family strong and enhance child well-being. This tip sheet describes six key protective factors and some simple ways you can build these factors in your own family.
All content courtesy of Childwelfare.gov.
Construction is progressing on the new Pressley Ridge School for Autism and Deaf! You can stay up to date on the building's progress through time-lapsed video. The facility is on track to welcome students in the 2019-20 school year.
The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF) recently awarded grant funding to Pressley Ridge to conduct a study examining how to build trust and mutual respect to meet vulnerable patients’ health care needs. The funded study, Relationships Matter: Leveraging Healthy Alliances to Improve Services across the Continuum of Care, is among five others supported as part of RWJF’s Building Trust and Mutual Respect to Improve Health Careprogram, managed by AcademyHealth. Read more about the project and the grantees’ research on the AcademyHealth website.
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