NewsFeed @ Youth In Need | October 2018

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NewsFeed @ Youth In Need | October 2018

NewsFeed @ Youth In Need  |  October 22, 2018


Recital to Honor Jim Braun and Benefit YIN

Youth In Need will hold the Jim Braun Memorial Recital on Friday, Nov. 2, at Eliot Unitarian Chapel in Kirkwood to benefit Youth In Need. Beloved colleague, mentor and friend, Jim led Youth In Need as President and CEO for 25 years until his retirement in 2012. Jim passed away in 2017, and this recital, performed by Jim’s son Joel, honors Jim’s love of music and the agency he helped grow. Recital tickets can be purchased online.


Pat’s Chat: “I Am More Than What Happened to Me…”

“I am more than what happened to me, I’m not just my trauma.” —Marcus

I did not set out with the intention to write a three-part series about trauma, but the topic has definitely been on my mind, in my heart and in my newsfeed! I’ve written about types of trauma impacting our clients and staff, from individual acts of racism and sexual violence, to collective experiences that are traumatic over time. I wrote about the need for self-care when events in the news trigger negative feelings among survivors, as well as the need to address root causes of trauma in our community.  Many, many of the children, youth and young adults that come to Youth In Need have experienced some form of trauma, so “trauma-informed care” is integrated deeply into our work, so that we better understand behaviors and feelings, and can respond and intervene in ways that are helpful versus harmful.

I recently read an insightful and informative article, The Future of Healing: Shifting from Trauma-Informed Care to Healing Centered Engagement by Shawn Ginwright, Ph.D., (a youth development expert and professor of Education and African American Studies) that challenged me to better integrate “trauma-informed care” with “strength-based philosophy.” In our efforts to understand and address how trauma can influence emotional, mental and physical health, as well as brain development, we can slip into deficit-based thinking and create blind spots in our efforts to support young people. Dr. Ginwright helps us look at both individual and collective harm, which require different approaches, and consider environmental context, which leaves toxic systems, policies and practices intact. He also discusses the risk of “focusing on the pathology (trauma), rather than fostering the possibility (well-being),” which is a foundation of strength-based philosophy and positive psychology that Dr. Bob Bertolino teaches.

Dr. Ginwright lays out a healing centered engagement (HCE) approach, which builds upon and overlaps trauma-informed care and offers a more holistic approach to fostering well-being. HCE moves beyond “what's happened to you” to “what’s right with you.” According to Dr. Ginwright, “Healing centered engagement is akin to the South African term ‘Ubuntu,’ meaning that humanness is found through our interdependence, collective engagement and service to others.”  

“I’m not entirely healed, but I’m hopeful.” —Marcus


YIN Forms Anti-Bias Antiracism Audit Team

Youth In Need has formed an anti-bias antiracism audit team, comprised of 25 Board and staff members, to evaluate systemic racism at all levels of Youth In Need. The audit team, which is divided into three subgroups, has received training from Crossroads Antiracism Organizing and Training and is working to shape awareness of systemic racism and identifying internal barriers to change. They will create strategies to dismantle racism on all levels, help develop a new cultural identity based on anti-racist values, and redesign structures that share power in ways accountable to people of color and other oppressed groups. Currently in the data-gathering phase, the subgroups will meet monthly and then come together with the larger group to report on findings every other month. The team should begin writing their recommendations next fall.


IRA Distribution? Tax Credits? Why Not Both!

If you are 70 ½ years of age or older with an IRA, here’s an opportunity to consider before year’s end! Here’s how it works:

  • Direct up to $100,000 be transferred directly from your IRA to Youth In Need.
  • When you do, the transfer counts against your “required minimum distribution” (RMD), and you do not have to pay federal income tax on the gift amount.
  • If you pay Missouri state taxes, you will also be eligible to receive 50-percent state tax credits through the current Youth In Need projects with the Youth Opportunity Program and the Neighborhood Assistance Program.

RMD completed? Check. No income tax on the distribution? Check. State tax credits coming back to you equal to 50 percent of your distribution? Check. Contribution that supports the children, youth and families Youth In Need helps every day throughout the St. Louis region. Quadruple check.

Contact Rob Muschany, Chief Development Officer, for more information at (636) 757-9348 or

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