Connect Casino Road relies on a unique combination of family lived experience and research-based approaches to shape our work. Our community defines what we do and why we do it, and science helps to inform us how to do it.
When we talk about building resilient, thriving families, we aren't talking about families alone. We know families don't exist in a vacuum. Their lived realities are influenced by the culture, systems, opportunities, and environments of the community they call home. In the diverse, low-income community of Casino Road, we can't talk about the community without talking about the negative ways in which systems such as institutional racism have impacted life for families here. That's why Connect Casino Road very intentionally has a wide scope of work that ranges from intensive support of individual families all the way up to trying to improve the systems those same families interact with on a daily basis. If we can help families access what they need to thrive while building a safer, more supportive, and equitable community for families to live in, we think our impacts can trickle down for generations to come.
We move our work forward through a series of teams that come together to focus on a certain need or opportunity that's been identified by families in Casino Road.
Partners from all over our community - including parents and community members - with interest and expertise in that topic form teams to think, plan, and respond as a community. This way, we can ensure different stakeholders are working together in alignment and we reduce the possibility of gaps, disruptions, and duplications in our systems. Partners are also more likely to leverage resources towards shared goals, and true community change becomes possible.
Some of these teams are permanent, such as our All Families are Ready team, while others are short-term in response to an emerging need or opportunity, such as a team that formed in Summer 2020 to respond to the barriers of distance learning for students and families in Mukilteo School District.
Creating a Community of Care
We believe that how we approach our work is equally important as what we do. While we may be able to accurately identify a need in the community, if we aren't mindful of how we bridge the gap between community need and the solution, then we haven't really done much good. For us, that's where the science comes in. How can we use the latest research to guide our good intentions?
An important part of our work is building a community of care across Casino Road that utilizes the same research-based approaches to building resilient families and communities.
Connect Casino Road relies on three frameworks to guide us, and a large part of our work is creating community learning opportunities to build literacy in these frameworks across our partnerships.
To help us move forward our value of relationships, we build capacity in Restorative Practices, or the "science of community and relationships." Find out more about this emerging social science in the video below.
We use a Two-Generational approach to focus our work on both caregivers and children in key areas such as Education, Health, Employment, and Economic Wellness. By working holistically with the entire family - especially families with young children - research shows we are much more likely to have long-term impacts on reducing poverty and increasing prosperity for generations to come.
Trauma-Informed Practices use the most recent neuroscience to reduce exposure to toxic stress in a community and heal the intergenerational impacts of trauma. The very DNA of our children and families can be impacted by how we as a community choose to support them.
Together, we believe we can create a community whose first priority is supporting the health and well-being of families.