Oklahoma’s First Lady Sarah Stitt

Oklahoma’s First Lady Sarah Stitt

Duncan will play host to a special guest in mid-January tasked with moderating a panel of experts speaking on how to mitigate childhood trauma.

Oklahoma’s First Lady Sarah Stitt and her office have joined forces with Pathways to a Healthier You and the Potts Family Foundation to present a film screening and panel discussion on adverse childhood experiences.

Two film screenings will show at 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. and 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 16 at the Simmons Center Chisholm Trail Hall for the group event aimed at educating on how community members can rally around “adverse childhood experiences” (ACEs). The movie presented is titled “Resilience: The Biology of Stress and the Science of Hope.” The first hour will focus on the film and the second hour of each session will feature the panel discussion.

According to a release, “the greatest public health discovery of our time” revolves around these ACEs and the “toxic stress it produces” and how it impacts communities by “increasing the risk of mental health challenges and chronic health conditions later in life.” Oklahoma brings in an ACEs rate of 28.5% as compared to the national rate of 20.5%.

“The child may not remember, but the body remembers. Your mental health is inseparable from your physical health. This one-hour documentary delves into the science of Adverse Childhood Experiences. Now understood to be one of the leading causes of everything from heart disease and cancer to substance abuse and depression, extremely stressful experiences in childhood can alter brain development and have lifelong effects on health and behavior,” states information from the event. “Oklahoma’s high rate of ACEs will require a long term effort to build resilience and promote hope.” 

After the documentary screening, First Lady Stitt will then moderate a panel of experts who will use the time to speak about what can be done and what is already being done to help mitigate childhood trauma. Discussions will also include how communities can rally to help the issue.

“This event is a call to action for our communities: how can we in Oklahoma integrate the science of trauma and resilience into our systems, communities, homes and lives,” states a release.

The free event requires registration and will include refreshments and door prizes. To register, visit www.eventbrite.com and make sure events are for Duncan. For more information, contact Kim Whaley at 580-251-8558.

The Simmons Center is located at 800 Chisholm Trail Parkway in Duncan.

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