In recent years public discourse and behavior in our schools, communities and online has become increasingly toxic, disrespectful and even hateful. Crittenton believes in promoting and advocating for inclusive and trauma-informed environments where all children and youth, regardless of who they are or where they come from, can grow up in a safe and supportive manner.
October is National Bullying Prevention Month and our organization and its employees truly believe that bullying is not only preventable but can be redirected into positive behavioral outcomes.
When you actively create and support trauma-informed work environments, schools or even households you can have positive outcomes when addressing anger, rage or bullying type behavior. Oftentimes, bullying or aggression comes about because of unaddressed or overlooked emotional trauma from the actual “bully”. They perhaps never learned the emotional coping skills they needed to handle anxiety, frustration, or even their own abuse.
We are not saying that bad behavior should be excused. However, we do need to take a moment to not lash out, and assess the situation and ask the question, “What happened to this young person or adult to where they are behaving this way, and how can I help create and support healthy and positive outcomes for all involved?”
Our mission is responsible for caring for some of the most vulnerable and oftentimes misunderstood system-involved children and youth within the communities we serve. As a children’s mental health organization we are honored to be a part of a young person’s life and be a source of empowerment when they are in need of help or compassion the most. Repetitive and complex childhood trauma has taken a toll on the well-being and development of all the children and youth we care for. For this reason we will continue to do whatever it takes to build resiliency in an environment where judgment, stigmatization, or discrimination are never normalized.
Recently, we’ve started a Crittenton Empowers campaign that encourages all staff, and supporters to take part in prevention efforts that curtail bullying, intolerance and hate within their workspace or communities. Crittenton is committed to creating a healthy environment for all, in particular our children and youth, and therefore we’ve chosen kindness over bullying; we’ve chosen respect over intolerance; and we’ve chosen compassion over hate.
In fact, we’ve loved this idea so much that we made a special “Crittenton Empowers” logo for this initiative and placed it on all of our marketing products, we’ve created t-shirts for all employees to wear to remind anyone who reads the message that, “kindess, respect, and compassion” matters, and we’ve created a pledge that anyone can download and share with their network.
Please join our awareness campaign by downloading and signing Crittenton’s Kindness Pledge! The pledge lists a number of ideas on how you can help spread awareness and prevention about bullying or intolerance in your local neighborhood. It is not impossible to create healthier communities, but we will need everyone’s help to do so.
And for further information and valuable resources about bullying awareness and prevention you can also visit PACER’s National Bullying Prevention Center.
Crittenton Services for Children and Families of Southern California (CSCF) is a non-profit social services agency whose mission is to heal the wounds of abuse and neglect; strengthen families; and help troubled adolescents reach their full potential. Established and incorporated in 1966 Crittenton has a highly trained workforce operating 24 hours a day / 7 days a week providing comprehensive mental health services, shelter care, and other support services to the clients in our care. We provide a full array of short-term residential services, in-home, community-based programming, wraparound family services, outpatient mental health, foster care, and transitional age youth programming with a service planning area throughout Southern California that covers Orange, Los Angeles, San Bernardino, and Riverside counties.