SURVIVE!

Anna did not live to see her ninth birthday

The broken systems that led to her tragic death, and put all our children at risk today, are revealed by Dr Katherine Ortega Courtney and Dominic Cappello in Anna, Age Eight. The authors describe our nation’s epidemic of adverse childhood experiences, which are ten forms of abuse and neglect. The landmark Adverse Childhood Experiences Survey of 1998 warned the nation that we faced an epidemic of childhood and adult trauma. Their urgent call to action was greeted with deafening silence.

“A blueprint for creating family-friendly and trauma-free communities across the nation.”

—Pepper Schwartz, PhD, Author and Professor of Sociology at the University of Washington

Buy Anna now on Amazon in ebook and paperback…

También en español.

Anna’s life could be any child’s life

The short life of eight-year-old Anna was the catalyst for Dr. Katherine Ortega Courtney and Dominic Cappello writing the book Anna, Age Eight. Anna is a fictional character based on very real children within the child welfare system. While working in New Mexico’s Child Protective Services — Research, Assessment and Data Bureau, Ortega Courtney and Cappello heard of a child that had been in and out of the system eight times, only to be returned to her deeply troubled mother who kicked her to death. The authors knew that this tragic death, and many others like it, were predictable and preventable. They advocated for data-driven strategies to stop more child maltreatment and fatalities from happening. At first, the authors felt like the Greek heroine Cassandra, cursed by the gods to know the future but never to be believed — at least not by powers that be. After many years and road trips to book talks across New Mexico, community stakeholders and elected officials are rallying around the lessons of Anna, Age Eight and a movement to ensure trauma-free childhoods is growing.

The huge costs keep mounting

There are costly consequences for all of us in ignoring ACEs, since it was first described in the 1998 ACEs Study by Drs Filletti and Anders. Directly or indirectly, ACEs, trauma and social adversity impact our nation in profound ways. While some people may score a zero on the ACEs ten-question survey, we all navigate a world of relatives, friends, neighbors and co-workers who may have scored much, much higher. And they live with untreated trauma impacting their capacity to learn, work and be caring parents.

If we wonder why we have substance misuse as a national pastime, consider that most of us are living with untreated trauma. Trauma can place us in a constant state of fight or flight. Some of us with resources get help, most don’t or can’t.

“Anna, Age Eight should be required reading for every teacher, every parent, and every public leader from health official to mayor.”

—Yarrott Benz, teacher and author of The Bone Bridge: A Brother’s Story, IPPY gold medal winner

Buy Anna now on Amazon in ebook and paperback…

También en español.

Heroics required. Your next step. 

The authors’ main thesis, quite simply, is that protecting all our children is entirely possible, but only when we know the scope of the challenges faced by families of all socio-economic levels in each unique community. Anna, Age Eight provides a detailed, data-driven analysis of the scope of the problem and how to strengthen key systems, called “survival services” and “thriving services,” designed to protect 100% of our children and strengthen families and entire communities.

Do what other courageous and compassionate champions, from New Mexico to Kentucky, are doing. Read Anna, Age Eight. Start a book club and engage in vital conversations which shifts the burden of ending trauma from struggling families to the entire community.

Then connect with lawmakers — your governor, state lawmakers, county commissioners, mayors and city councilors — to start the process of ensuring the ten vital services for surviving and thriving including: health care, housing security programs, job training and full-resourced community schools. These will make all the difference in the world, to all the children, parents and caregiving grandparents in your cities and towns.

AUTHORS
EXPERTISE AND EXPERIENCE

Katherine Ortega Courtney, PhD and Dominic Cappello are advocates for turning crisis into opportunities for improving systems, solving challenges using data, technology and collaboration. They know why systems that should protect us, can fail us — and teach leadership development and data-driven problem-solving. Dr. Courtney’s expertise in data analysis, continuous quality improvement, collective impact and experimental psychology guides communities and organizations through turbulent and timely change. Cappello is a health systems strategist and New York Times bestseller author, whose Ten Talks book series on family safety reached a national audience when his innovative work was featured on The Oprah Winfrey Show. Cappello and Courtney are also co-authors of 100% Community: Ensuring 10 vital services for surviving and thriving and Attack of the Three-Headed Hydras which serve as an urgently needed call-to-action for each state to end adverse childhood experiences (ACEs), trauma, social adversity and health disparities. 

THE BUZZ

What do readers say about Anna, Age Eight?

“Congratulations to Dr. Katherine Ortega Courtney and Dominic Cappello on the publication of their powerful and important book.”
—Alan Webber, Mayor of Santa Fe, New Mexico, and co-founder of Fast Company magazine

“The book asks that we educate ourselves about this hidden epidemic of trauma and mobilize our cities and towns around evidence-based solutions. The book is a blueprint for creating family-friendly and trauma-free communities across the nation.”
—Pepper Schwartz, PhD, Author and Professor of Sociology at the University of Washington

“Quite simply, everyone who has a child or works with children in any capacity should read this book. All of us—parents, educators, physicians, those in all walks of social work and law enforcement.”
—Heather Race, former educator

“This book brought data to a place of relevancy for social change. It was written in an easy to follow, plain-speak format which made the read not only informative, but very enjoyable and motivating.”
—Dr. Melissa Hardin, Program of Social Work, Eastern New Mexico University

“I love this book because it’s recommendations are actionable, at what ever level of public engagement you begin from.”
—Robin Swift, New Mexico Public Health expert

“I appreciate the genuine and authentic approach to creating a narrative for a very emotionally charged social and public health issues.”
—Xenia G Becher, MSW, Syracuse University

“Anna, Age Eight should be required reading for every teacher, every parent, and every public leader from health official to mayor—because this epidemic of trauma is real and must be taken seriously.”
—Yarrott Benz, teacher and author of The Bone Bridge: A Brother’s Story, IPPY gold medal winner

 

READ!
Now available in ebook and print editions
The Next Step

“WITH THIS STRATEGY, 100% THRIVE!”

In times of unprecedented instability and change. 100% Community is the only data-driven and tested way forward, ensuring… Read more

“Saving humans and the future.”

Attack of the Three-Headed Hydras is a groundbreaking book unlike any other and published at a time when our nation faces its biggest crisis… Read more

FOLLOW THE PLAN!

We know how to ensure that 100% of all families in your community SURVIVE and THRIVE.