UCS presents film on biology of stress

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BENNINGTON — United Counseling Service and the Bennington Free Library will present the film "Resilience: The Biology of Stress & The Science of Hope," followed by a presentation of adverse childhood experiences on Tuesday, April 23, at the library at 100 Silver St. The film will be shown at 6 p.m., and refreshments and conversation sponsored by the Holistic Healing Practitioners will be served at 5 p.m.

The one-hour documentary delves into the science of adverse childhood experiences, or ACEs, and the birth of a new movement to treat and prevent toxic stress. Extremely stressful experiences in childhood are now understood to be one of the leading causes of everything from heart disease and cancer to substance abuse and depression. These experiences can alter brain development and have lifelong effects on health and behavior.

The film will be followed by a discussion led by Katie Aiken of United Counseling Service. Aiken is a certified trainer in adverse childhood experiences and will discuss tips and tools for building resilience and supporting those who have experienced trauma or toxic stress.

"We are thrilled that we can bring this film and discussion to the community," Lorna Mattern, executive director of United Counseling Service, said in a release. "Communities can work to improve outcomes for our children and families by better understanding ACEs, what they are and how they can manifest themselves years later."

UCS is a private, non-profit community mental health center serving Bennington County since 1958. UCS promotes healthy lifestyles through all its programs and offers care at 16 different facilities, including two primary outpatient facilities in Bennington and Manchester.

This event is free and open to the public. For more information visit www.ucsvt.org or call 802-442-5491.

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