A San Diego County agency specializing in the treatment and prevention of child abuse and neglect will receive $400,000 from the federal government to promote healthy behaviors in minority and/or disadvantaged children who have been exposed to trauma.

Image from southbaycommunityservices.org

South Bay Community Services of Chula Vista is one of seven organizations nationwide to receive grants totaling about $2.8 million from the Office of Minority Health at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, it was announced Friday.

Another Southern California recipient, Children’s Institute Inc. of Los Angeles, will also receive $400,000, HHS officials said.

The initiative will promote healthy behaviors for youth, ages 5 to 15 years at the start of the five-year program, who are at risk for poor health and poor life outcomes because of childhood trauma.

“For children, traumatic events, such as witnessing a death, serious injury, a single or repeated natural or human-made event can result in emotional harm and can lead to long-term physical and mental health consequences,” said Dr. J. Nadine Gracia, deputy assistant secretary for minority health and director of the HHS Minority Health office.

The grants “will help bring together community-based organizations to develop innovative and collaborative approaches to provide more support for children and their families who are at higher risk for exposure to trauma,” she said.

The initiative also promotes the goals of My Brother’s Keeper, which was launched by President Barack Obama in 2014 to ensure all young people can reach their full potential, including boys and young men of color.

— City News Service

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