Mental Health Experts

How do we know when children are dealing with ACEs, and does that impact our children’s ministries?  If 64% of adults have experienced some type of Adverse Childhood Experience, the kids you’re discipling are experiencing them as well (See the conversation with Dr. Chinwe Williams below).

So, how do we respond and care for these kids?

Before we dive into the answers to those questions, though, we want to remind you of this: We are not mental health experts, and as children’s ministry leaders, that is also not expected of you. Community resources and larger organizations like the National Child Traumatic Stress Network and Psychology Today are specially equipped to support children and families with ACEs. You are specially equipped to disciple children and make your ministry a safe and loving place for them.

We have partnered with two trained experts to give us a better glimpse of how ACEs can act as a barrier for kids to know the love of Jesus.

Dr. Chinwe' Williams: Definition and Impact

Chinwe Williams

Dr. Chinwe Williams - Definition and Impact

Chinwé Williams, Ph. D. is a Licensed and Board-Certified therapist, speaker, author, and consultant. She is a former graduate counseling professor, college and high school counselor, and executive coach. She is currently a trainer and consultant for K-12 schools, non-profit, for-profit, faith-based, and corporate work settings. Dr. Williams is a frequently invited expert blog and podcast contributor. Her expertise lies in areas of adolescent, family, and women’s wellness, stress/anxiety management, and trauma recovery.

Dr. Shelly Melia: Boundaries and Barriers

Shelly Melia

Dr. Shelly Melia: Boundaries and Barriers

Shelly Melia is a Professor of Childhood Education and serves as the Associate Dean and the Program Director for the Master of Arts in Children’s Ministry and the Master of Arts in Family Ministry in the Graduate School of Ministry at Dallas Baptist University. Prior to coming to DBU she served for over 25 years in children’s and family ministry in Oklahoma, Florida, and Texas. Dr. Melia is also a Licensed Professional Counselor with a special research interest in grief and resilience. She holds an undergraduate degree from Oklahoma Baptist University, two master’s degrees from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary and a Doctor of Philosophy from B.H. Carroll Theological Institute.