Brain Day Staff Event at CUPS!


Brain Day Event at CUPS


It’s Brain Day 2.0 here at CUPS! Which means that, as an organization, we come together to learn more about the importance of understanding healthy brain architecture and the impact of Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) on the lives of the population we serve.

Developed in California in 1998, the original ACEs Study examined the impact of stressful or traumatic events during childhood including abuse, neglect, and household dysfunction. Over the past 19 years the ACEs Survey has grown in popularity and is now used all over the world. Over time, this body of research has consistently found that high ACE scores are correlated with numerous negative health outcomes such as poor physical and mental health, substance misuse, and high-risk sexual behaviours.

Being able to identify the link between childhood trauma and poor outcomes later in life helps stakeholders develop effective resources within the community and equips service providers with the tools to move clients towards self-sufficiency. Not only that, ACEs research encourages systemic change focused on prevention, rather than simply reduction, which is why we are using it right here at CUPS.

The ACEs Survey is an important piece of helping us understand why certain programs work for some CUPS clients and not others, which will inform our trajectory of services. In addition, the ACEs Survey is an important intervention tool that helps frontline workers identify trauma and offer support within a safe space. Our hope is that the survey is a positive educational tool that empowers clients to understand their present day functioning, the impact of ACEs on their children, and how to mitigate risk.

Brain Day 2.0 is an exciting opportunity for staff to learn more about current ACEs research being conducted right here in Calgary, as well as worldwide. Staff will engage in various learning activities and hear from guest speaker Dr. Teresa Killam from Riley Park Maternity Clinic who has championed the use of ACEs with every patient who walks through their doors.

Happy Brain Day!



#ShineALight on the Numbers

● 1 in 10 Calgarians live in poverty

● 1 in 4 Canadians lives with diabetes, undiagnosed diabetes or prediabetes

● 1 in 5 Canadians experience mental illness or addiction problems each year

● 4 million people in Canada experience food insecurity

● 1 in 8 Canadian households struggle to put food on the table.

● An estimated 45% of the overall homeless population are individuals living with mental illness

● 28 – 34% of shelter users are Indigenous peoples

● 40% of Indigenous children in Canada live in poverty

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