Lemonade for Life pilot approach was a success

Futures Thinkers: Adapting is our forte and when we join forces with partners who are willing to take the leap and try unorthodox solutions, we create communities that are just that much stronger and are equipped to make a difference for children and families.

Community members representing a wide range of professions gathered this year for the first community-based Lemonade for Life training in order to learn more about the impact that adverse childhood experiences (ACEs) have on individuals and their community. As part of this pilot, participants were also asked to develop community interventions they could employ to meet the needs they identified.

The pilot was conducted in Hamilton, Monroe, and Jones counties in Iowa. A wide range of community members from different professions, who play divergent roles in the community, were invited to attend the training. This community-centered approach was a shift for Lemonade for Life, which usually focuses on training family support professionals.

“The idea was to get people whom we would not usually target for a training like this, to broaden the scope,” explains Breanne Ward, founder of For Ward Consulting LLC in Des Moines, who led the trainings on behalf of CPPR. “We took a net and threw it out and whoever came in came in, and they came in strong. That was what was so beautiful about it – they were all invested.”

The pilot included 67 people from all three counties, including members of law enforcement, afterschool professionals, members of the faith community, and even a librarian. And they have already gotten to work, applying what they learned, Breanne says. For example, in Jones County, “They are using Lemonade for Life principles to complement what they are already doing. Lots of the participants had partnerships in place focused on protecting children. They asked, ‘How can we integrate these ideas into that?’”

Each county is offered three coaching calls, 30 days apart, to collaborate with the participants to find innovative ways to build hope and resiliency in their communities.

Learn more about Lemonade for Life