Handle With Care Massachusetts

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book cover

Hardcover and e-book format will be available in October.
A personalized hand sewn Mama Paca will also be available for purchase.


Sarah Cloud, DEC Initiative Subcommittee member and Director of Social Work at Beth Israel Deaconess Plymouth, has written a children’s book to help with the loss of a parent to substance use.

“Ryan is a young girl living with the loss of her mother, who died from the disease of addiction. She is comforted by Mama Paca, a stuffed animal made from clothing that belonged to Ryan’s mother. Mama Paca and Ryan’s adventures together honor her mother’s memory as both a person and a parent. Their journey provides the foundation for a difficult but honest discussion about substance use disorder, how to memorialize a life lost, and coping skills to grieve.

An alpaca was chosen for her gentle, loving nature. Alpacas symbolize the ability to adapt. As a spiritual animal the alpaca can guide and empower you on your personal journey, supporting you in reaching your full potential by following your heart.

This book is dedicated to all the loved ones who fought courageously and lost their battle with the disease of addiction. You are very much loved and missed. We honor you by keeping your memory and spirit alive in your children. Your death is not in vain. We use this opportunity to shine light on the darkness of stigma and shame to extinguish this disease for future generations.”

The Childhood Trauma Task Force’s Annual Report:

Children’s Well-Being During Covid-19: Recommendations for Supporting Children and Families Who Have Experienced Trauma and Stress During the Pandemic

The Plymouth County DECI Initiative is featured on page 20 of this report

ACEs Connection: Plymouth County

ACEs Connection is an active on-line platform perfect for connecting with others who are using trauma-informed and resilience-building practices. Sign up for free to access and share current news, research and events. The “Ask the Community” feature is a great way to get feedback from others doing similar work.

Statewide Convening in Worcester Make Massachusetts a Trauma Informed State

Aces Connections- March, 12, 2020, written by: Jennifer Cantwell & Kati Rayner

Plymouth County Drug Endangered Children’s Initiative Team at BJA/OVC Grantees Meeting

Aces Connections- December 31, 2019, written by:  Jennifer Cantwell

Brockton’s Family Resource Center offers Trauma Informed Yoga for Kids

Aces Connections- December 9, 2019, written by: Jennifer Cantwell & Kati Rayner