Broward County

Broward County, Florida, USA

Comprehensive Wellness Program for Broward County Public Schools

Since 2018, we’ve collaborated with Broward County Public Schools, the Children’s Services Council of Broward County, and the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative to bring trauma-healing and resilience-building tools to 38,000 children and adults in Broward County, FL.

In the aftermath of the February 14, 2018 shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School (MSD) that killed 17 students and faculty, Broward County Public Schools (BCPS) shared with CMBM the urgent need for a community-wide stress and trauma-relief response.

BCPS Superintendent Robert Runcie invited CMBM to host trauma-relief workshops in Broward, and in July 2018, with the generous support of the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative, CMBM and BCPS officially launched the Comprehensive Wellness Program for Broward County Public Schools. The Children’s Services Council of Broward County joined the effort in 2019, helping expand our program beyond the school system and into the community. 

Today, we continue to bring CMBM’s transformational model to Broward County. Mind-body medicine techniques have been integrated into classrooms, clinics, suicide hotlines, community centers, houses of worship, and individual and family counseling sessions throughout the county. Students at MSD have also participated in a pioneering Mind-Body Medicine Peer Counseling Program and Mind-Body Ambassadors Club, an after-school program started by MSD teacher Diane Wolk-Rogers and MSD parent Ellen Fox-Snider.

Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School’s Mind-Body Ambassadors and club founder Diane Wolk-Rogers discuss their experience as Ambassadors and present the mind-body skills that they’ve shared with their peers with more than 1,000 healthcare executives in Orlando.

Since we first began our work in Broward in 2018, we’ve seen an escalation in mass shootings in the United States, making absolutely critical the development of a comprehensive program that addresses student anxiety and enhances resilience, while also providing a systematized response in the event of a shooting. The Comprehensive Wellness Program for Broward County Public Schools is setting a benchmark for community crisis response, resiliency-building, and wellness.

Impact

CMBM—alongside over 650 Broward peer counselors, teachers, parents, and community service providers whom we’ve trained since 2018—has shared our model with over 38,000 children and adults in Broward County. We’ve documented statistically-significant decreases in levels of stress and depression, and improvements in burnout, compassion fatigue, and secondary trauma. 

Testimonials from the Comprehensive Wellness Program for Broward County Public Schools demonstrate that students and school faculty present during the February 14th shooting feel calmer and more in-control thanks to their newfound support system. Testimonials also demonstrate our model’s ability to provide relief, increase hopefulness, and improve community connections among the thousands of students, parents, educators, and community members who have participated. 

 

CMBM’s program empowered me and my students to help build community resilience. It has absolutely changed my life and how I instruct and care for my students.

– Diane Wolk-Rogers, AP History Teacher at MSD and Activist

 

Youth leaders who have participated in the popular Mind-Body Medicine Peer Counseling Program have expressed an increased sense of well-being, agency, and purpose. Peer Counselors have led some 85 classroom presentations that have impacted over 1,000 students at MSD. Students are excited to support one another, engage in dialogue about their trauma, and share the life-long self-care skills they’ve learned with their friends and classmates. 

Read more about our work in Broward in TIME and the South Florida Sun Sentinel, or listen on WLRN and The Response.

Funding generously provided by:
Broward County Public Schools Logo
In partnership with:
  • 2-1-1 Broward
  • BOLD Justice
  • Broward County Public Schools
  • Broward County Libraries
  • Canine Assisted Therapy
  • Charles Drew Family Resource Center
  • Children’s Services Council of Broward County
  • Coral Springs Middle School
  • Cypress Bay High School
  • Everglades Elementary
  • Fort Lauderdale High School
  • Healing Beyond Borders
  • Joe DiMaggio Children’s Hospital
  • Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School
  • Mobilizing MSD Alumni
  • StreetWaves
  • SWIMS
  • United Way
  • Westglades Middle School