In April of 2016, the Santa Ana Public Library hosted a Youth Services Provider Summit for the city's key stakeholders in youth development and education. The goal of the summit was to bring together representatives of the school district, municipal government and local non-profits to form the basis of a learning community dedicated to an initiative that will foster collaboration to nurture the success of youth in our city. The summit was intended to kick start this collaboration, and focused on cultivating resiliency in teens and young adults.
The summit was led by the well-known pediatrician, Kenneth Ginsburg, M.D. Dr. Ginsburg practices Adolescent Medicine at The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia and is a Professor of Pediatrics at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine. He also serves as Director of Health Services at Covenant House Pennsylvania, serving Philadelphia’s homeless and marginalized youth.
In Dr. Ginsburg’s adolescent medicine practice, he cares for a wide variety of medical conditions, while simultaneously addressing adolescent behavioral issues. He practices adolescent medicine through prevention and the recognition that social context and stressors affect both physical and emotional health. Dr. Ginsburg addresses clients’ risks by first acknowledging that most worrisome behaviors stem from an individual’s reaction to stress. He then guides each young person to build upon existing strengths to address problem behaviors.
His research over the last two decades has focused on helping youth to develop their own solutions to social problems and teaching clinicians how to better serve them. Dr. Ginsburg has received over 30 awards recognizing his research, clinical skills, or advocacy efforts, and has been named one of Philadelphia magazine’s “Top Docs” nine times.
Dr. Ginsburg has graciously shared his “Reaching Teens” toolkits with many practitioners across the country. “Reaching Teens” has been used as a professional development tool to build youth serving professionals’ capacity to APPLY the foundational principles of Positive Youth Development, resilience theory, and trauma-informed care. Among the cities/counties that have been trained in this model by Dr. Ginsburg are Modesto, California, Monterey County, California and the Mental Health Connection of Tarrant County, Texas (Fort Worth and Arlington).
The event was a success, as many of our local organizations and agencies came together to hear Ginsburg speak. Evaluations revealed participants were engaged and ready for next steps, energized by his unique and powerful approach to reaching teens. Complimentary toolkits were raffled off so that each organization that received one could begin a training process based on the Dr. Ginsburg’s model of Positive Youth Development. A copy was purchased for the Santa Ana Public Library, enabling our team to initiate training for our own staff.
For those who were not able to attend the summit, or those who would like to review the information presented, videos have been posted below, courtesy of our CTV3 staff.
Stay tuned for an announcement about future city-wide meetings to discuss the program and how participants have utilized the strategies to better serve the youth in their department.