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Improving health
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Today NHS Health Scotland is co-hosting an event with Education Scotland, to learn and share practice on preventing and responding to Adverse Childhood Experiences, and make connections with current work in schools to provide a safe and nurturing environment for learning, health and wellbeing.

Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) are stressful events that occur in childhood, such as being the victim of abuse (physical, sexual and/or emotional), neglect or living in a household where there is domestic violence, substance misuse, or mental ill-health.

ACEs are common across the population and have been found to be associated with risks to poorer health, wellbeing and social outcomes.

The focus of this conference is to share the research base around childhood adversity and support practitioners to work together to support children, young people and families’ resilience.

Katy Hetherington, Organisational Lead for Child and Adolescent Public Health said

“We know that Adverse Childhood Experiences can have a lifelong impact on a person’s ability to think, interact with others and learn. We also know that these experiences are not inevitable – they can be prevented and there is much we can do to intervene early.

We are pleased to bring together colleagues in public health, education and the third sector so that we can share ideas about how we can respond in an informed way to such experiences, supporting children’s learning and health and wellbeing, and preventing the risks that such experiences can present to a child’s future.”

Gayle Gorman, Chief Executive of Education Scotland said

“This conference is a valuable opportunity for colleagues in health, education and other sectors to pool our knowledge and expertise on adverse childhood experiences, nurturing approaches and trauma informed approaches, in order to support the wellbeing of children and young people.  

“By gaining a common understanding of how adverse childhood experiences affect health, learning and behaviour, and sharing examples of how educational settings can respond, we can harness Scottish education’s focus on wellbeing and relationship-based support for children and young people to mitigate the impact of adverse experiences and ensure educators and other professionals have the tools they need to work together and ensure learners can reach their full potential.”

You can find out more about ACEs on our Adverse Childhood Experiences page. 

You can follow the conversation on Twitter using #ACEsScot