To co-create a community that meets children impacted by a parent's addiction (and other adverse childhood experiences) where they are at, and supports their mental wellness, resilience, and healing.
Resilience on Repeat
To mitigate the risk associated with adverse childhood experiences and disrupt the cycle of trauma found in families impacted by a parent's substance use.
see and support a person, first.
Lived experience: Although we value the needed expertise of professional experience, we believe that the voice of those with lived experience needs to be at the forefront of initiatives wanting to create lasting change for children and families impacted by substance use issues.
People-centred: We see people as multidimensional individuals made up of stories and experiences from which includes the people and experiences of their past, present, and future. We believe it is NOT necessary to know what experiences the person has had in order to provide support.
Resilience Informed: We understand that resilience happens in the context of stress/ adversity, and we know that healing and resilience from adverse experiences happens within the context of belonging, connection, and community. A primary goal than is to INCREASE our connection, belonging, and access to community.
Compassion: We believe that seeing people through a lense of compassion is imperative to supporting families healing, resilience, understanding, and growth.
Starling Community was founded in 2018 by Agnes Chen, a Registered Nurse and community member with lived experience of parental addiction, and other accompanying adverse childhood experiences, who knows and values the power of community in supporting children.
In 2009, while working on an intensive care unit, Agnes was simultaneously introduced to Dr. Gabor Mate's book, "In the Realm Of hungry Ghosts" about Addictions, as well as the 1998 Adverse Childhood experiences Study, both profoundly impacting her understanding of the experiences and people in her life.
With a renewed determination to create spaces where individuals impacted by parental addiction and other ACEs could heal, Agnes started Starlings Community with the initial goal to simply inspire more empathy and compassion for ALL the children of our community. The focus, initially, was on highlighting the differences that can make life challenging for many, while connecting us on the similarities that bind us as humans-our NEED for connection, understanding, and love (the action). Although this focus remains paramount, Agnes realized that we needed to confront some difficult truths: the fact that NOT all children are able to receive this connection, understanding, and love within the 4 walls of their home, and that the systems currently in place prevent families from receiving the support they need.
Children do not get a choice in the kind of home environment they are raised in, but as a community, we have a choice in the kind of community environment that supports them. We are determined to ensure families impacted by a addiction, and other ACEs, receive the supports they need in order to heal.
Brave Parent's Conference 2019
Circles of Rhythm Podcast 2019
Wymbin Teacher Training 2020
Campfire Kinship Talk 2020
Teacher's PD Day 2021
Bell Let's Talk HOPE Conference 2021