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Columbus, OH 43215


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Press release

Columbus City Council announces funding for the Columbus Community, Action, Resilience and Empowerment (CARE) Coalition

[COLUMBUS-OH] Days before Thanksgiving in 2015, a City of Columbus, 9-1-1 dispatcher received a call from a Hilltop resident screaming her neighbor had just shot her husband. It was a cry that reverberated throughout the community as shocked residents took to the street to console one another.

This tragic event gave birth to the CARE (Community, Action, Resilience and Empowerment) Coalition, a multifaceted, neighborhood response unit led by Columbus Public Health.  

On Thursday, May 25, 2017, Columbus City Council President Zach Klein will allocate $175,000 to expand the initiative. The program serves all of Columbus, but the expansion highlights the Hilltop and Linden areas.

"Violence is not just a criminal issue. It's also a public health issue, and we need to be proactive and reactive in addressing its traumatic effects," said Council President Klein. "Trauma left untreated can have significant mental and behavioral impacts on residents that can devastate communities from within and potentially perpetuate more violence."

The CARE Coalition plans to use the funding to expand the trauma unit program which is a combination of social service providers and social workers supporting communities that have experienced traumatic events.

"The goal is to provide wrap-around services that assist residents coping with emotional as well as physical trauma," Klein continued. "The impact of violence does not remain isolated to the residence where it occurred. It impacts us all."

The point of impact is where the CARE teams begin their work. In the days following, CARE teams will engage residents where the incident occurred.

“Through this initiative, we have the opportunity to lift neighborhoods,” said Health Commissioner Teresa Long, MD. “Helping them build their resiliency skills will pay dividends into the future.”

The mission of the coalition, as defined by its members, is to engage, support and educate Columbus residents who experience trauma as well as the community organizations who serve those residents. These organizations include mental health providers, community organizations and city government.

The pilot expansion is expected to run July 1, 2017, through December 31, 2018. The initial funding includes personnel cost training electronic social media and printing costs.

  • The overarching community outcomes of the work are:
  • Increased community engagement for collective impact in addressing adverse childhood events (ACE) and trauma
  • Increased community capacity for resiliency
  • Strengthening a community culture of care and support for those actively experiencing trauma

The Coalition’s work is action-oriented and includes systematically increasing education among Columbus residents about psychological trauma and trauma-informed care approaches, building an infrastructure for rapid response to traumatic events that affect a whole community and directly engaging with residents from neighborhoods experiencing trauma in order to increase resiliency in Columbus communities.

Currently, the Coalition has over 90 community organizations and individuals that participate on a regular basis and benefit from the program.