The Bronfenbrenner Center for Translational Research (BCTR) in the College of Human Ecology furthers research in the social and behavioral sciences, bridging the gap between research and outreach. The center helps scholars translate their knowledge into programs, evaluate those programs, and loop the knowledge back to their research.
The BCTR recently received a $2.8 million grant from the United States Department of Health and Human Services to establish the Center for Creating Trauma-Informed Residential Settings through the Residential Child Care Project—a longtime program of the Bronfenbrenner Center. Martha Holden, a senior extension associate and project director in the College of Human Ecology, leads the project.
The grant aims to help children who have experienced trauma and adversity by teaching and implementing trauma-informed, evidence-based models to their caretakers. Staff in these residential care agencies will be trained to provide developmentally enriched living environments, create a sense of normality, and improve the socio-economic and development outcomes for these children. Along with providing funding to implement changes, the grant also funds tools that allow researchers and facility staff to track and evaluate the program.
“The Residential Child Care Project has long been recognized as a leader in terms of developing techniques that keep our most vulnerable children—and those who care for them—safe and in showing how these techniques work in the real world,” says Christopher Wildeman, Policy Analysis and Management, and director of the BCTR. “The thing that’s so exciting about this grant is that it shows what a research leader the Residential Child Care Project is, and it provides them with an even larger platform for showing practitioners what the best research indicates and generating even more excellent research.”
The Bronfenbrenner Center for Translational Research was established in 2011. Its inception brought together programs and resources previously housed in the Family Life Development Center and the Bronfenbrenner Life Course Center.