By Hollie Eudy, All About Women, April 6, 2021
Sixty percent of the population has experienced at least one traumatic event at an early age. Fifteen percent have survived four or more traumatic experiences before the age of 18. The lifelong ramifications of this kind of trauma are far-reaching and oftentimes unidentified, leaving many to view their lives through a lens filled with chaos and trauma.
The Watauga Compassionate Community Initiative’s (WCCI) mission seeks to provide a knowledge to communities that is nothing short of empowering. WCCI is the voice of hope in a world that is too often bleak and meaningless. Those in the organization are determined to take the brokenness of human experience and create something resilient by helping others rise from their trauma.
The group is guided by a leadership of 12 community members — 10 of which are women. The leadership consists of Hayley Bayne, Marisa Cornell, Yolanda Adams, Candis Walker, Adam Hege, Jennifer Warren, Kellie Reed-Ashcraft, Denise Presnell, Graham Aitken, Suzi Woodard, Stephanie Thomas and Crystal Kelly. The team includes representatives from groups such as the Children’s Council of Watauga County, Mediation and Restorative Justice Center, Western Youth Network, Blue Ridge Children’s Advocacy Center of Southmountain Children and Family Services, Appalachian State University, Watauga County Schools, Blue Mountain Center for Integrative Health and the local faith community.