On March 17th and 18th, more than 35 dedicated public sector leaders came to the Governor’s mansion in Nashville, Tenn. to learn the brain science and communication science of adverse childhood experiences (ACEs).

The event was the first FrameLab hosted by the ACE Awareness Foundation in Tennessee in collaboration with FrameWorks Institute, an award-winning nonprofit organization known for its ability to frame the public discourse about social problems.

The FrameLab’s focus was to arm participants with a deep understanding of the issue as well as provide the communications techniques necessary to effectively introduce the concept of ACEs and the need to address it.

Over two days, participants interacted and discussed how to best frame the ACEs story, and how to best address different forms of potential skepticism from diverse audiences.

For example, if in explaining ACEs to someone for the first time they were to tell you other people’s children are not my problem how would you respond?

In their research, FrameWorks has found responding to such a question with a value proposition that ties treating ACEs into the prosperity of all is an incredibly effective solution.

So an exchange could look like:

Q: Why should I care?

A: A strong sustainable society depends on the well-being of its children. Prioritizing children’s needs will result in a common good that benefits us all. Community supports are necessary to promote overall prosperity.

Participants left the two day event with a renewed interest in talking to their peers about ACEs as well as a better understanding of how to frame the story of ACEs and its detrimental effect to ensure those they speak to understand why it matters to everyone, and why something must be done.

Two more FrameLabs are set to occur in 2016, one focused on the health care community, another with the faith based community. The more who can tell our story and highlight the importance of combatting ACEs early, the brighter future for all Tennesseans.

We look forward to sharing more stories and tips for communicating here as the FrameWorks process continues.


Related Media

The Childhood Experiences That Can Cut 20 Years Off Your Life, by Former U.S. Senator Bill Frist | Forbes.com