History of Watauga Compassionate Community Initiative (WCCI)
History of the Watauga Compassionate Community Initiative (WCCI)
In 2015, a group of youth-serving agencies in Watauga County began to explore how to better serve youth in Watauga County. Taking direction from the Center for Disease Control‘s “Essentials for Childhood” document, they decided the first step would be to raise community awareness and provide education about trauma and resiliency. To this end, a “State of the Child” Forum with themes of Childhood Trauma and Trauma-Informed Communities was held in May of 2017. Approximately 400 people attended, representing key sectors from Watauga County and surrounding areas.
After the Forum, a steering committee was formed to continue this important work. Now known as the Watauga Compassionate Community Initiative (WCCI), their mission statement is:
To promote health and resiliency in our community and to effectively prevent, recognize and treat trauma by creating safe, stable, nurturing environments and relationships.
WCCI meets monthly to develop goals and help implement change. Some of their accomplishments include talking with media to influence a more positive view by the community towards people who are homeless and developing more partnerships between local agencies to further the mission of viewing clients through a trauma lens. Again following the “Essentials for Childhood” model, six subcommittees were created: Awareness, Data, Funding, Policy, Prevention, and Events. This afternoon, the subcommittee chairs will each be presenting a summary of their group’s work over the past year. Written summaries of reports are available here:
PDF available upon request
Monthly WCCI meetings are attended by representatives from across the community, including: AppHealth Care, Appalachian Regional Healthcare System, Appalachian Regional Public Library, Appalachian State University, Blue Ridge Pediatric and Adolescent Medicine, Boone Area Chamber of Commerce, Blackburn’s Chapel, Boone Police Department, Boone United Methodist Church, Children’s Council of Watauga County, Caldwell Community College and Technical Institute, Crossnore School and Children’s Home, Daymark Recovery Services, Inc., Department of Juvenile Justice, Department of Social Services, Guardian Ad Litem, Hospitality House, Mediation and Restorative Justice Center, private therapists, theHeart church, Southmountain Children and Family Services, Youth Villages, WAMY, Watauga County Sheriff’s Office, Watauga Medics, Watauga County court system, Watauga County Schools, and Western Youth Network. We thank you for your time, energy and commitment.