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California ACEs Aware Grant Toolkit

Looking for an evidence-based stress mitigation strategy for your community partners to use to address ACEs and toxic stress in your ACEs Aware Network of Care Grant?

Mind Matters: Overcoming Adversity and Building Resilience helps to regulate the stress response by:

  • Promoting healthy sleep habits
  • Encouraging moderate aerobic exercise
  • Teaching mindfulness skills and calming techniques
  • Addressing mental health issues using a psycho-educational approach
  • Promoting safe, stable, and nurturing relationships
  • Including assessment tools of its efficacy

Mind Matters is an evidence-based “buffering” resource that helps to prevent, treat, and heal the harmful consequences of toxic stress response in children (ages 12 and up), youth, and adults.


The effects of childhood trauma and toxic stress are not easy to overcome. Formal training is often required for people to learn to notice and interrupt destructive thought patterns and harmful behaviors.  Mind Matters teaches people skills and practices that cultivate healing and clear away distractions to learning and healthy relationships.

Mind Matters’ practical, hands-on group lessons explore the effects of adversity and toxic stress along with the healing process. Each lesson, based on ACEs science, includes activities that build resilience and increase hope. The Appendix offers guidance to adapt each lesson for use in one-on-one settings, making the curriculum also suitable for case workers, home visitors, mentors, and others working with individuals and families.

The lessons address the following topics:

  • Self-Soothing and Regulating Emotions: Cultivate a mindfulness practice
  • Managing Stress Effectively: Learn to reduce intrusive thoughts
  • Developing Empathy: Improve interpersonal communications
  • Creating a Code of Honor: Develop a life of intention
  • Building and Using a Support System: Learn how to ask for help

The skills taught in Mind Matters are designed to be practiced over a lifetime. The curriculum is not meant to be therapy or to replace psychotherapy. Rather, it is intended to be facilitated by paraprofessionals to inspire, uplift, and set people on the journey of healing as they cultivate deeper resilience.

The program can be facilitated both in-person and on-line.

Learn more here.

For an online review copy of Mind Matters as well as materials and training quotes, please contact Kay Reed, Executive Director. (KayReed @ or 510- 812 – 6238)

We understand the quick turnaround this grant activity requires and are here to help.

Understanding Child Opportunity Levels

Interactive Mapping Tool: Child Opportunity by Geographic Location in the U.S.

Use the link above to manipulate this tool to show the child opportunity level in your geographic area.