Mill City Kids (MCK) is a community of people affected by structural racism and historical trauma. The group is composed of a combination of individuals living in and working with communities that are affected by historical trauma and structural racism as well as system leaders from education, health, housing, child welfare and protection, judiciary, corrections, business and human services. Through a two-prong approach that focuses on both systems and community, MCK is seeking change that produces:
- Short-term, child/family-centered-trauma-informed policies and practices in systems currently serving people in Minnesota; and
- Long- term, investments in community that foster protective factors that activate family and community power to health/thrive and reduce the need for system support. Such protective factors that promote well-being even in the face of toxic stress, historical trauma and structural racism include investments in healing from trauma, building relationship, and offering mentorship, and other child, youth and adult/parental capacity-building supports.
Fundamental to both short and long term change is fostering readiness in systems to adopt changes in current policy and practice that are trauma-informed and responsive to need as well as readiness in community to shape and guide needed reforms. Ultimately, MCK will produce a systems and community driven reform agenda that reflects investments and policies that can meaningfully advance the well-being of African American and Native American children and their families.