April 21, 2017. Henrico Citizen.

On May 1, more than 1,700 community members representing Richmonders Involved to Strengthen our Communities will gather at St. Paul’s Baptist Church (4247 Creighton Road) at 7 p.m. to address elementary reading, childhood trauma and job training in the greater Richmond region. Community members will speak about each issue and proposed solution.

For three years, the organization has sought implementation of a specific literacy program in Henrico County that it believes would help children who struggle with reading. Its members intend to continue to petition the Henrico School Board to consider the program. Board members and school system officials have previously said that their own plan to address the issue is more effective and better-suited to students than the one championed by RISC.

During RISC’s annual listening meetings, more than 200 RISC leaders unearthed a unifying concern among all congregations: the impacts of childhood trauma. RISC leaders discovered that thousands of children in the Richmond region experienced untreated trauma, which spirals into problems with learning, behavior and mental illness. At the Nehemiah Action, RISC leaders will take initiative to identify and implement proven solutions.

In 2016, both HCA Hospitals and VCU Health made commitments to recruit people into hospital jobs through a pipeline offering built-in support services and training. One year later, RISC continues to follow up with the hospitals and community partners, seeking tangible results. Representatives from both hospitals have been invited to provide updates on their progress in hiring through the career pipeline.

For details about the Nehemiah Action event, visit http://riscrichmond.org or contact the RISC office at 476-0889 or riscoffice@gmail.com.

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