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Handle with Care

OCH is excited to share recent successes from the Handle with Care (HWC) program in Clallam County. This project embodies the mission of OCH, tackling health issues no single sector or Tribe can tackle alone.

HWC originated in West Virginia in 2013 and was adapted first into Kitsap County and then later into Clallam County a few years back. The planning and ongoing convening for the Clallam Handle with Care team has been supported by the Clallam Resilience Project within the United Way of Clallam County. Handle With Care is a national initiative to employ trauma informed practices for children, schools, and first responders. The intent of the Clallam HWC team is:

  • to support youth in their education and social success,

  • have trauma informed awareness and care for professionals to support youth’s academic and personal well-being following traumatic events,

  • and strengthen collaborations among partners to enable system change that promotes better community.

The need for this program is vital as 60% of U.S. children have been exposed to violence, crime, or abuse (Source: US Department of Justice). HWC implementation is currently underway in four school districts in Clallam County with participation by numerous community partners including:

  • Port Angeles School District

  • Sequim School District

  • Quillayute Valley School District

  • Crescent School District

  • Clallam County Sheriff’s Office

  • Port Angeles Police Department

  • Sequim Police Department

  • Forks Police Department