Reflections from our Coalition Board Members – Tiffany Larson
Tiffany Larson, Bee Inspired CAPP Program Coordinator, through Building Families
1. I believe in helping all children to thrive because…youth are our future mentors and leaders. In order for them to be successful, they need to be empowered to be happy, healthy, and safe. By being a part of Power Up YOUth, we are working together as a coalition to build or enhance supports to do just that.
2. I support Power Up YOUth because…I believe that working collaboratively has a greater impact on positive outcomes. Increasing needs and dwindling resources make it essential for organizations and groups that serve youth, families, and communities to embrace a shared agenda and commitment to sharing information, leveraging resources, and working together for the greater good of Hamilton County.
3. My proudest accomplishment as a coalition member has been….my dedication to the SHIFT Happens group. It stands for Students Helping IMPACT Future Teens. It was because of Power Up YOUth that youth took a trip to a national institute about a decade ago. Those youth came back with the idea for the youth-led group, and a passion for helping impact future youth. It has looked different over the years, but seeing how youth have consistently brainstormed and implemented their ideas for substance-free events, activities and projects to help build positive youth-adult connections, and raise funds to give back to their school and community has been so rewarding. I miss working with the 9th-12th graders, and hope we can find a new way of implementing their ideas and projects come late Summer/Fall.
4. Power Up YOUth is unique because….we are a collaborative partnership working together to support all youth so they can become happy and healthy, productive adults. We are focused on the positive attributes, as well as the needs and gaps in services for Hamilton County specifically. We don’t necessarily provide programming, but we work to help support and enhance the programming, services, and resources within the county. We are lucky to have engagement from schools, community leaders, businesses and civic organizations, youth-serving organizations, public health and health care entities, faith communities, youth, families, and other sectors to make positive strides in helping youth in our communities thrive.
5. The key challenge facing Power Up YOUth is….the unknown. Many of us don’t know what the future looks like when it comes to interacting, funding, implementing, and more. We have had a phenomenal leader that has helped pave the way for us to continue the efforts. With Covid-19, we may have to look at new and innovative ways of connecting with the communities, with our partners, for fundraising, and more.
6. A personal experience that has caused me to build a better community for our young people …..Power Up YOUth has been focusing a lot of efforts on awareness of Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACES) and Trauma-Informed Care, through trainings and workshops, and by offering the viewing of Paper Tigers and Resilience: The Biology of Stress and the Science of Hope. In a 2014 TED-Talk on childhood trauma, Dr. Nadine Burke Harris said, “The single most important thing that we need today is the courage to look this problem in the face and say, this is real and this is all of us.” That quote, and her passion throughout the film “Resilience” lit a spark in me. I am doing my small part in a larger movement. I am helping to serve youth, families, and communities a bit better by filling my toolbox with more knowledge and skills! By being #ACESInformed, I am helping to build a better community for young people; both personally and professionally.
Thanks for your service to our coalition Tiffany!