I want to shout it from the rooftops!

- Pat Sauer



Great Results!

Building Strong Families

Scott County FRCs

In October of 2022, the Scott County Family Resource Centers were presented with a Commissioner's Circle of Excellence Award by the Department of Human Services (DHS) for their work to provide Scott County families with basic needs and to keep families together. The Sauer Family Foundation, along with Casey Family Programs, was recognized for collaborating on this project. You can watch the Scott County Board of Commissioner's meeting by clicking here.

Connect Our Kids

Connect Our Kids is building a free technology tool called Family Connections to help improve outcomes for foster and at-risk children by making family searches easier and faster for social workers. It is cloud-hosted and secure, combining a people search and family connections map for building family trees of relatives and natural, supportive relationships for kids in foster care. Their recent report on the pilot they conducted in 2020 showed promising results. Nine organizations, primarily private nonprofits with existing kinship search programs, used the Family Connections tool to enhance their work. Two public agencies; one county and one state level child welfare agency used the tool as well. Over the course of the pilot, the testers served 622 children and youth. On average, respondents reported they found just over six times more connections for foster children and at-risk youth and they were able to do it in a little less than half the time when using the Family Connections software. This is significant change for organizations that have existing kinship programs and will help organizations that don’t currently have kinship search programs. Further development of the tool includes a “Guide me” software feature that will give step by step instructions along the way and trauma videos to help children and youth recognize feelings as they do the family search.


Resilience to Trauma

Conscious Discipline

Conscious Discipline is a trauma-informed social and emotional learning method that was piloted in the White Bear Lake Early Childhood Program. The results show that it increased self-regulation skills in 100% of the early childhood staff. The four-year-old children learned a lot as well - 90% of them increased their self-awareness and self-regulation skills. This change helped in their relationships in the classroom and at home. It also helped their decision-making skills. All of it added up to calmer early childhood classrooms! Kudos to Angela Drange and her staff! https://consciousdiscipline.com/


Miss Kendra

The Miss Kendra Program at Willow Lane Elementary School in White Bear Lake has shown a 71% decrease in behavior-related referrals to the principal’s office. This program allows children to share their worries and feel that an adult cares about them and their concerns. It helps calm the children and creates a safe learning environment. This program is currently being funded in twelve schools across the Metro Area. To learn more about the program, go to www.traumainformedschools.org


Educational Success

Great MN Schools

In August 2021, Great MN Schools shared the findings of a needs assessment focused on elementary literacy instruction in grades K-5 in Minneapolis and St. Paul. Reading is a complex set of skills that must be explicitly taught. Effective reading instruction addresses two types of competencies: Foundational reading skills, or “decoding skills” and knowledge-based competencies, like vocabulary and background knowledge. On literacy, we are learning together is a detailed report that reviews current practices and also gives recommendations for how schools can adopt instructional methods that are proven to help all children be strong, successful readers. This type of roadmap can guide school leadership, teachers and interventionists as they support students on their literacy journey.

Great MN Schools


Additional Resources:

Sauer Family Foundation Resource Page

National Child Traumatic Stress Network: https://www.nctsn.org/

Child Mind Institute: https://childmind.org/

Center on the Developing Child, Harvard University: https://developingchild.harvard.edu/




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