DCRC Book Club: Our Recent Reads and An Invitation to Join Us!
From Susan Damico, M.A. | Director
One of the items on the Devereux Adult Resilience Survey (DARS) is, “I seek out new knowledge.” The DCRC Team has committed to putting a strategy in place for this item, resulting in the formation of the DCRC Book Club. We want to share a little bit about the books that we have read so far, and also invite you to join us!
Our first book was Ordinary Magic by Ann Masten. For those of you who have been through our trainings or have attended our webinars, you probably heard us talk about Ann Masten and how eloquently she speaks about the fact that the most powerful protective factors that buffer children and adults against risk are quite ordinary. The power of a loving, safe relationship; the power of a consistent routine; and the power of having an interest that is nurtured are just a few of the protective factors that research confirms have a powerful impact. Ordinary Magic covers many different aspects of resilience research and practice. Some chapters are easier than others, with a few chapters focusing on more advanced research topics. If you want to challenge yourself and really deepen your understanding of resilience, we highly recommend this book. It is a seminal piece of work and our team is grateful to Ann Masten for coining the term, “ordinary magic.” It reminds us on a daily basis that we all have the power to foster resilience in the lives of the children and families we serve through the most ordinary routines, interactions and moments of each and every day.
Our second book was Option B by Sheryl Sandberg and Adam Grant. You may recognize Sheryl’s name, as she is the current Chief Operating Officer of Facebook and has recently been featured on many news outlets as a result of Facebook’s challenges. What you may not know is that Sheryl lost her husband very suddenly a few years ago, leaving her a single mother of two young children. Option B takes readers through her personal experience of grieving and healing, weaving in all that she has learned about resilience and the science behind what helps people recover – and even find joy – after tragedy strikes. This book did a fantastic job of taking us through Sheryl’s personal journey while teaching us the many valuable lessons that science confirms applies to all of us. As you might expect of a leader in the social media field, Sheryl has also started a website on this topic. Check it out at www.OptionB.org.
Our current book is The Deepest Well by Dr. Nadine Burke Harris. Dr. Harris is a remarkable woman who runs a pediatric clinic in an impoverished neighborhood in San Francisco. She has dedicated her career to serving the most vulnerable children in the city, and is passionate about understanding the impact of trauma and long-term health consequences associated with risk factors such as poverty, abuse, neglect, illness, incarceration, etc. While our team has not yet finished the book, we are far enough along to know that it is a must-read for anyone interested in understanding the science behind the long-term, devastating impacts of trauma. Dr. Harris presents the most recent scientific findings in a way that “non-scientists” (like many of us) are able to understand.
If you have any interest in joining our little book club, and want to share your thoughts about the books we are reading, please let us know. We may not be able to meet in “real time,” but we can use technology to share thoughts, ideas and inspirations! Email us at [email protected] if you’d like to join.