RAISE: Alexandria's Trauma Informed Community Network

Page updated on Jul 27, 2021 at 1:59 PM


ResilienceFilmScreeningFilm Screening of "Resilience", August 26, 2021

Join us for a FREE screening of Resilience, a one-hour documentary that delves into the science of Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) and the birth of a new movement to treat and prevent toxic stress. Experts now believe that toxic stress is one of the leading causes of everything from heart disease and cancer to substance abuse and depression. These extremely stressful experiences in childhood can alter brain development and have lifelong effects on both health and behavior. Resilience chronicles this new approach among physicians, mental health professionals, educators and communities who are using cutting-edge science to disrupt cycles of violence, addiction and disease. A brief discussion will follow the screening.

When: August 26, 10AM-12PM
Where: alx Community, 201 North Union Street
Who: Open to the Public but Seating is Limited

*Snacks and beverages will be provided

Learn more and register here: www.research.net/r/AlexandriaVA-ResilienceScreening

View, download, and share the flyer for the event.

Summit WebboxAlexandria Trauma & Resiliency Summit, May 20

This virtual, free community-wide event will focus on the pillars of Equity and Resilience with three workshop tracks: Racial and Social Justice, Navigating Environments, and Wellness. Register online by May 14.

2nd Annual Resilience Week VA, May 2-8

Resilience Week VA 2021 (1/2)RAISE will participate in the 2nd annual state-wide collaboration between Virginia's Trauma-Informed Community Networks (TICNs) to bring RESILIENCE building activities and events to ALL Virginians. View more events here. #ResilienceWeekVA

Community Mental Health and Resilience Plan

Community Resilience Plan

In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, RAISE developed and implemented this Community Mental Health and Resilience Plan. The Plan recommends mental health strategies that support all of Alexandria's workforce, parents, youth, and residents throughout and after the pandemic. Read the Plan. See what RAISE was able to accomplish.

About Trauma-Informed Community Networks

Throughout Virginia, there are more than 19 communities coming together across disciplines around trauma-informed care. Most often in Virginia, these groups form as trauma-informed community networks (TICNs). Every TICN looks different because they are built by the local community, however, in each of these communities, these networks share common characteristics:

  • Build a stronger, more resilient trauma-informed community
  • Increase awareness of trauma and adverse childhood experiences (ACEs) and identify areas that the group can collectively build upon
  • Develop a shared language about trauma and resilience
  • Help organizations to become trauma informed, conduct trainings, support, and implement new practices in schools, courts, and community services
  • Create a mechanism for collaboration, and the sharing of information and resources
  • And much more!

TICNs help to connect practice across disciplines and help to identify gaps and how policies can be implemented. Virginia’s community networks play a key role in advancing trauma-informed policy and promoting a statewide policy agenda. 

For more information about Virginia’s TICNs and the Campaign for a Trauma-Informed Virginia, visit the Voices for Virginia’s Children website at vakids.org.

About Resilience Alexandria: Inform. Support. Elevate.

First RAISE MeetingAlexandria’s Trauma Informed Community Network (TICN) is located in Alexandria, Virginia. Established in July 2019, Alexandria’s TICN aims to build a more equitable, safe, trauma-informed and resilient Alexandria by informing, supporting and elevating our community. Hence its name, Resilience  Alexandria: Inform. Support. Elevate. (RAISE)

RAISE Mission

Alexandria’s TICN held its first meeting in July 2019. Within a few short months of its origin, RAISE members developed their mission statement and subcommittees to ensure a unified approach to building healthier and more resilient communities. The RAISE mission is to build a more trauma-informed and resilient Alexandria by informing, supporting and elevating our community. 


RAISE members were asked to use their lived experience and expertise to identify sources of trauma that are specific to Alexandria. Based on those sources, four following priorities drive RAISE’s mission:

  1. Inform Alexandria’s community and various sectors about RAISE and its mission to build a more trauma-informed and resilient Alexandria;
  2. Support community members and professionals by delivering trainings focused on ACEs, trauma, and resilience, and
  3. Support organizations becoming trauma-informed by providing them with technical assistance in transforming their spaces, policies, and procedures; and finally
  4. Elevate our community’s needs and voice through advocacy at the micro and macro levels.


These priorities and RAISE’s current capacity resulted in the following committees which guide RAISE’s strategic direction:

  • Member Engagement and Wellness Committee: Supports existing efforts that aim to promote community wellness and resiliency among RAISE members and the greater community.
  • Changing Environments and Cultures Committee: Helps teams and organizations create a trauma-informed culture by providing them with technical assistance in transforming their spaces, policies, and procedures.
  • Justice Advocacy Committee: Supports community members and professionals by delivering trainings focused on ACEs, trauma, and resilience, and elevates our community’s voices by advocating for justice and advancing policies that dismantle systems that perpetuate racial trauma and inequity

Each of these subcommittees have developed their own action plans that will guide future work and evaluate progress.

Backbone Organization and Strong Leadership

The Center for Children and Families (CCF) within the City of Alexandria’s Department of Community and Human Services (DCHS) serves as the TICN’s direct backbone organization. CCF convenes RAISE partners on a monthly basis, fostering connections, and driving change in order to push and sustain large-scale collaborative efforts. CCF provides the infrastructure through dedicated staff and ongoing engagement of partners to ensure that everyone remains connected to an overarching purpose, efforts are maximized, work and accomplishments are shared, and duplication of effort is avoided.

Mailing List, Meetings and Membership

Mailing List

To sign up to our mailing list to receive RAISE updates, fill out this short registration form.


Resilience Alexandria meets on the last Thursday of every other month from 10:00-12:00 at the Charles Houston Recreation Center. Meetings are currently held virtually until further notice. Email RAISE@alexandriava.gov if you would like to receive calendar invites to meetings. All meetings are open for anyone to attend.

  • Upcoming Meetings in 2020: May 28, June 25, July 23 and August 27

Membership Packet

Learn more about Resilience Alexandria and view our membership roster in the New Member Packet and Orientation Guide.

What Can You Do As a Member?

  • Stay up to date on trainings, events and other information by joining the RAISE Mailing List (email RAISE@alexandriava.gov to join)
  • Attend network meetings to:
    • learn about trauma-informed initiatives across the county
    • share what is going on in your agency or organization related to trauma-informed care implementation
    • meet like-minded professionals and neighbors, and to identify resources to bring back to your agency or community
  • Engage with other network members, and learn about upcoming events
  • Attend RAISE trainings, and promote them to your colleagues and neighbors
  • Help set-up trainings and Resilience or Broken Places screenings for audiences within your sphere of influence
  • Develop a strategy to communicate within your own agency or organization about trauma-informed initiatives in the county
  • Bring printed materials to your agency, neighborhood (community centers, etc.), conferences and other settings where it makes sense to spread the word about trauma & resilience
  • As your role allows, advocate for trauma-informed policies at the agency, county, state and federal government levels (you will learn what those opportunities might be from attending network meetings and reading RAISE communications)
  • Advocate for trauma-informed policies, practices and procedures within your own personal and professional spaces
  • Serve on a RAISE Subcommittee to help network members:
    • Raise awareness of the trauma network and its trauma-informed and resilience building efforts (Awareness and Communications Committee)
    • Assist organizations create more trauma informed spaces, policies, and practices (Changing Environments Committee)
    • Deliver educational trainings in the community to raise awareness of the importance of ACEs and ways to build community resilience (Training Committee)
  • Chair one of RAISE’s Subcommittees
  • Become a RAISE trainer and facilitate Trauma 101 trainings, ACE Interface, Resilience discussions and more!

RAISE 1st BirthdayAlexandria’s Trauma Informed Community Network Celebrates First Birthday in July 2020

On July 23, 2020, Resilience Alexandria: Inform Support Elevate (RAISE), Alexandria’s Trauma Informed Community Network (TICN), celebrated its first birthday. Members came together virtually to “open presents” including video  messages from Mayor Justin Wilson, Vice Mayor Elizabeth Bennett-Parker, Councilman Mohamed “Mo” Seifeldein and Department of Community and Human Services Director, Kate Garvey and to celebrate RAISE’s accomplishments. RAISE ended the celebratory meeting by asking members to light a candle and a make a wish for RAISE as they blew it out.

Community Resilience Plan

Community Mental Health and Resilience Plan

In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, RAISE developed and implemented this Community Mental Health and Resilience Plan. The Plan recommends mental health strategies that support all of Alexandria's workforce, parents, youth, and residents throughout and after the pandemic. Read the Plan.

  • Overview of the Community Mental Health and Resilience Plan (Power Point)
  • Community Mental Health and Resilience Plan (One Pager)

Urgent Call to Action: COVID-19 Crisis

We need your help in flattening the mental health curve and promoting and wellness in our community as we face of COVID pandemic! You can help implement our Resilience Plan for Community Wellness by:


Coping with COVID Resources 

Resiliency Resources For Supervisors

  • A toolkit designed to help supervisors and their staff understand the mental health impact of COVID-19 and challenges associated with returning to the workplace. 

COVID Specific Resources from Fairfax TICN:

More Trauma-Informed Resources from Fairfax TICN

Trauma-Informed Resources

Race Based Trauma Resources and Support in Times of Civil Strife

  • Chronic stress can have negative side effects on everyone. Psycho-social factors, specifically, pervasive exposure to racism and discrimination, create an additional daily stressor for people of color. Research shows this to be particularly true for African-Americans (APA, 2016). Race Based Trauma Resources and Support in Times of Civil contains a continually growing list of resources for and information related to coping with racism and trauma on individual, interpersonal and family, community and national and global levels.

Equity and Diversity

Guides and Toolkits




Contact Information

RAISE Email: RAISE@alexandriava.gov

RAISE Co-Coordinators

Chelsea Eickert
Children & Youth Master Plan Coordinator 
Department of Community and Human Services

Dr. Stacey Hardy-Chandler
Director of the Center for Children and Families
City of Alexandria, VA
Department of Community and Human Services

Advocacy and Policy

Chloe Edwards, Policy Analyst, Voices for Virginia’s Children

Committee Chairs

Awareness and Communications Committee
Noraine Buttar

Training Committee 
Gina White

Changing Environments
Paola Navarro