A Time of Peaceful Reflection and Gratitude
The past two years have been an absolute whirlwind. When I founded Cowart Trauma-Informed Partnership in January 2020, I had little more than an understanding of how trauma could impact a person and an urgent need to shout it from a mountaintop, so everyone could share in this knowledge. I set up a website, and struggled with how to maximize my reach.
Then the world seemed to change overnight--and with it, I was flooded with opportunities. People started contacting me from all over the world, looking for ways to lower stress levels and sooth the nervous systems of their staff and clients. My classes and professional development sessions filled. Then, I was unbelievably fortunate, and formed a once-in-a-lifetime partnership with Janet E. Roche and Dr. J. Davis Harte. Together, we founded the Trauma-informed Design Society, which opened a whole new world of applications for my knowledge and approach.
In the last few months, we published our Trauma-informed Design Evaluation Tool for K-12 Schools (TiDEvalK12), which can be used to evaluate schools and identify changes in the physical environment that can lower the stress levels of students and staff. We have been inundated with requests for us to consult on design and architectural projects, to center personal safety, dignity, empowerment, comfort, and joy. It has been such an honor, and we are continuously looking for ways to expand our network and build a sustainable community of trauma-informed practitioners.
I am deeply grateful for each and every person who has made all of this a reality. Our network and reach is growing, which is so rewarding. It means that we, as a worldwide society are looking for ways to support one another in our interactions and physical spaces. That we have acknowledged the world can be a kinder, more soothing place, if we each just keep taking steps in that direction. It is heartening, paints an incredibly hopeful and optimistic picture of the future, and leaves my heart light with joy.
It also means that we will need to be intentional about continuing to provide meaningful ways to participate, come together to share ideas, and maintain close communication. In that vein, I am pleased to announce that we will be embarking on a few new ventures....
~~ Coming Soon! ~~
In response to the expressed interest, we will be creating a networking and support group for current and past participants of Trauma-Informed Education and Supporting Marginalized Students courses. The group will serve as a place where participants can exchange ideas, brainstorm about challenges, and provide encouragement and support to others engaged in the sometimes arduous work of being an equitable educator and societal change-maker, focused on improving the lives of our students. More information is forthcoming, but if you are interested in learning more about the coalition or helping it take shape, please don't hesitate to reach out to me at email@example.com.
The Trauma-Informed Design Society will be offering membership to those who apply the principles of trauma-informed care and the Trauma-informed Design framework in their work. The Society is a transdisciplinary team with a focus on turning research into practice, and back into research. Merging our extensive experience in human services and interior design with an understanding of trauma science, the Society helps organizations implement a trauma-informed approach in their services and create stress-reducing physical spaces. The Society offers professional development and consultation to anyone interested in learning more, and expects to release information about membership requirements in 2023. Stay tuned!