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‘Adversity is Not Destiny’

October 25, 2019

Moving to ‘Asset-Informed’ Care

By Ileen Henderson, National Director of Bright Spaces

I recently read Ellen Galinsky’s article about a shift from “trauma-informed care” approach to the impact of trauma on children to a more strength based approach she calls “asset-informed care.” The asset-informed care really resonates for me as I work with children across the country that have experienced trauma.

Ellen, the author of the groundbreaking work on the importance of executive function, Mind In The Making, is now the Chief Science Officer for the Bezos Family Foundation, and her experiences are echoed by my own. Observing children in play reminds us of their innate capacity to heal themselves when given the tools to thrive in an environment that nurtures those natural strengths with age appropriate toys and a safe venue for those innate strengths to be nurtured. Providing Bright Spaces in settings where children have the most need to reset and reclaim their childhood builds on their natural resiliency and the important natural instinct to heal and grow despite the challenges they have encountered through their young lives.

“Successful interventions are asset-based, focusing and expanding on what children and adults are already doing that’s right.” Supporting children’s play through Bright Spaces is a strength-based approach that increases the child’s opportunities to build relationships with children and adults, heal and expand those important “moments of connection.”

From trauma-informed to asset-informed care in early childhood,” by Ellen Galinsky