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ACEs Coalition

Working toward a resilient community that prevents and reduces the effects of adverse childhood experiences in Guelph and Wellington County.

COVID-19 Update

The ACEs Coalition continues to work remotely to build a resilient community. For information about parenting during a pandemic:

More Information

What are ACEs?

Experiences in childhood shape who we are and set the stage for who we will become.  

Researchers call stressful or traumatic abuse, neglect or household dysfunction adverse childhood experiences (ACEs). ACEs can increase the risk of negative health behaviours and outcomes later in life.1

The ACEs Coalition of Guelph & Wellington aims to prevent and reduce the  effects of ACEs in our communities by building resilience at the individual, family, and community level.

According to a local study of adults in Wellington, Dufferin and Guelph2

of Adults had at least one ACE
of people had four or more

According to a local study of adults in Wellington, Dufferin and Guelph2

of Adults had at least one ACE
of people had four or more
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Resilience helps us weather adversity

Experiencing persistent adversity can hinder positive development and well-being.

Resilience is a person’s capacity to adapt to and navigate difficult times.3,4

Childhood is the best time to build the basis of resilience, but it can be strengthened at any stage of life.4

Resilience isn’t something we develop alone. The connections we feel to family, friends, community and culture are Protective Factors that work together to strengthen resilience.5, 6, 7

Resilience can buffer the effects of Risk Factors like abuse, neglect, isolation and violence.

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Build Your Own Resilience

You can do a few simple things to help strengthen resilience:


about ACEs and be part of breaking the cycle

Develop and maintain

supportive, healthy relationships

Take Care of yourself

try to get enough sleep, eat healthy food and exercise regularly

About Us

A resilient community that prevents and reduces the effects of Adverse Childhood Experiences.

Call to Action

Over 100 people came to an event to learn more about adverse childhood experiences

Getting started

  • Training and workshops
  • Local survey (led by WDG Public Health)

Now and beyond...

  • School Pilot
  • More tailored training
  • Website
  • Toolkit for Champions
Get In Touch

How You Can Help

It takes a village to build resilience. Learn how you can help reduce the impact of ACEs in your home, workplace, and community.



Service Providers


Early Childhood Educators

1 Felitti, V.J., Anda, R.F., Nordenberg, D., Williamson, D.F., Spitz, A.M., Edwards, V., Koss, M.P. & Marks, J.S. (1998). Relationship of childhood abuse and household dysfunction to many of the leading causes of death in adults: The Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACE) Study. American Journal of Preventative Medicine, 14(4), 245-258.

2Wellington-Dufferin-Guelph Public Health (2019). Wellington-Dufferin-Guelph Childhood Experience Study (report in progress). Guelph, ON.  

3 Masten, A.S., Gewirtz, A.H., & Sapienza, J.K. (2013). Resilience in development: the importance of  early childhood. Retrieved March 15, 2018.

4 Alberta Family Wellness (2018). Resilience: Why do some of us bounce back from adversity better than others do?. Retrieved March 15, 2018.

5 National Center for Injury Prevention and Control, Division of Violence Prevention. (2019). Risk and Protective Factors. Retrieved (July 19, 2019)

6 Benzies, K. & Mychasiuk, R. (2009). Fostering family resiliency: a review of the key protective factors. Child & Family Social Work, 14, 103-114. Retrieved March 15, 2018.

7 Child Welfare Information Gateway (2015). Promoting Protective Factors for In-Risk Families and Youth: A Guide for Practitioners. Retrieved March 26, 2018.

8 Ungar, M. (2011). The social ecology of resilience: Addressing contextual and cultural ambiguity of a nascent construct. American Journal of Orthopsychiatry, 81(1), 1-17.