SSIC entered western North Carolina in October 2018 through a partnership with the collaborative Get Set Transylvania. Nestled high in the mountains, Transylvania County is facing an alarming 24% child poverty rate with 1,300 children 0-18 years old living in poverty. The reality in North Carolina is, 23.8% of children 0-17 years old have experienced two or more Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs). Together, Get Set Transylvania and SSIC collaborate to support children’s and families’ well-beings, provide resources, build capacity, and help advocate for public policy improvements.
SSIC was launched at Get Set Transylvania’s annual Halloween Fest with over 15,000 residents being treated to special events as well as appearances by Walkarounds Abby Cadabby and Count von Count. Since then, Get Set Transylvania has been busy incorporating SSIC deep into its programming in creative ways, including the following:
- 23 “Smart Start” teacher-learning kits with SSIC materials have been made available for educators to use in classrooms.
- 27 Family Place “Learn-and-Play” kits with SSIC games and activities were created for families to utilize at home.
- 45 Transylvania Public Library “Batty Bags” are now available for check-out.
Through programing, over 1,000 young children and families have been reached with SSIC resources and 8,100 supplemental toolkits have been distributed. In the community, 260 early childhood educators and service providers have received professional development training through SSIC on school readiness, resilience, and trauma informed practices. These providers have the potential to reach 6,500 young children and families. All Count von Count puns aside, Transylvania County is a place SSIC is really sinking its teeth into… see what we did there?