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Our Youth Development Resource Portal is being developed thanks to a grant from the Pallottine Foundation’s Healthy Communities Initiative.


Inspiring Dreams Network is pleased to have partnered with the WV Education Alliance to develop a Social Emotional Learning Toolkit to help mentors address the social, emotional, mental, and physical health of children in our schools.  Dr. Barb Brady, Executive Director of IDN developed the Social Emotional Learning Toolkit 2.0, with support from John Barton and Candace Smith, IDN VISTAS, as a companion to the SEL Toolkit 1.0 developed during the height of the pandemic to help mentors teach coping skills.   


SEL Toolkit 2.0 gives mentors strategies to embed their work with students in the existing multi-tiered system of support. The goal is to equip mentors to work as team members in the system of support, helping students navigate complex systems to improve school success and their overall well-being. 


This toolkit also provides an overview of common mental health implications and “look fors” to help mentors identify when students need extra support. Additionally, the toolkit outlines evidence-based best practices for how mentors can support students in building resiliency and protective factors. The toolkit provides some tools and activities that mentors can use to help students address some of the issues they are struggling with, as well as, specific mentoring activities to help youth to overcome barriers and cope effectively.

Toolkit 2.0


Tri-County Training Project: Supporting At-Risk Youth through Coaching and Community Connections

Inspiring Dreams Network (IDN) was awarded a Year II grant by The Greater Kanawha Valley Foundation to expand our Training and Capacity Building project toKanawha and Clay Counties, while continuing to work with Putnam County.   


IDN is providing several training opportunities to adults who work with youth in several youth serving partner organizations, including 4-H and Girl Scout Clubs, Camp Allegheny, Greater Kanawha Valley YMCA, DHHR Child Care and Afterschool Programs, Education Elevators, Mission WV, Clay CARES Team, Clay County Project Aware, WV Statewide Afterschool Network, and more). The goal of the project is to build the capacity of volunteers, leaders, and staff to better support the needs of the youth they serve, particularly in the areas of improving mental health and overall wellbeing.


IDN has provided several training opportunities including Understanding, Overcoming and Preventing Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACES 101, 102, and 102),Mental Health 101, Youth Mental Health First Aid, and  Connections Matter.  Other planned trainings include Navigating the State’s Premier Web Portal (, Dispelling the Myths of Autism, Suicide Prevention, Success Coaching and Mentoring, and more.  Reach out to to request a training.  Also, check out other offerings and upcoming training opportunities by clicking on our training tab.,  A new component of this grant includes Community Spotlights to inform partners about other youth development programs and services to build more connected communities.  See below for more info.


Year II

Putnam County Training Project: Supporting At-Risk Youth through Coaching and Community Connections

Thanks to a grant by The Greater Kanawha Valley Foundation, Inspiring Dreams Network is partnering with several Putnam County youth serving organizations (4-H, Camp Allegheny, Girl Scouts, DHHR Child Care and Afterschool Programs, and Mission WV Facilities) to build the capacity of their volunteers, leaders, and staff to better support the needs of the youth they serve. IDN has provided several training opportunities including Understanding, Overcoming and Preventing Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACES), Youth Mental Health First Aid, and Navigating the State’s Premier Web Portal.

TRAINING NEEDS SURVEY: What are your youth development training needs?

Let us know about your training needs by completing this training needs survey,  IDN specializes in youth development and have wide connections that can help us address your needs.

Youth Development Portal

Inspiring Dreams Network has been awarded a Healthy Communities Grant through the Pallottine Foundation of Huntington. Through this grant the IDN has begun developing a youth development resource portal to provide free resources to support West Virginia youth and their network in areas they commonly struggle and often do not know where to turn to get the support and information they need. The resource portal targets three broad stakeholder groups: youth, families and youth serving adults. The need for online resources has increased, as social isolation has increased with COVID-19.  We hear every day in the news the stories of youth who are struggling with depression, suicidal thoughts, substance abuse, academic disengagement and a lack of vision for their own futures, as their worlds have been turned upside down.

Putnam County
Training Needs Survey
Youth Development Portal

ACES and COVID-19 & Kids Issue Brief Series

Inspiring Dreams Network is partnering with the ACEs Coalition of WV to develop and and release Five-PartCOVID-19 & Kids Issue Brief Series 

The first installment of a Five-Part ACEs and COVID-19 Issue Brief Series was released statewide in December  in partnership with WV KIDS COUNT.  This first installment, “ACEs and COVID-19 Overview: Caring for Kids During and After a Pandemic” introduces the connection between ACEs and COVID-19 on child well-being.

The series combines the expertise of Coalition members in their respective fields representing WV KIDS COUNT, Inspiring Dreams Network, Marshall University, WV Department of Education, Supreme Court of Appeals of WV, TEAM for WV’s Children, Southern Highlands Community Mental Health Center, and more. The other 4 series will be released in conjunction with by-monthly ACES Coalition meetings, beginning in February.

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Aces Covid Issue Briefs


IDN has been awarded a grant from The Greater Kanawha Valley Foundation (TGKVF) to fund our project titled "Supporting At-Risk Youth through Coaching and Community Connections."

Through this year’s project, we plan to provide more targeted training to support staff and volunteers in afterschool programs to enhance their capacity to address the needs of their at-risk populations. IDN is partnering with afterschool programs in three counties: Kanawha, Lincoln, and Putnam; through partnerships with Step by Step (Kanawha and Lincoln counties), Star Club (Kanawha County), Tri-State YMCA, and Camp Appalachia (Putnam County). Each participating afterschool program (made up of 17 partner programs) will receive a minimum of six “units” of training during the grant year.


Additionally, IDN will provide a minimum of six Zoom-based training opportunities for all youth-serving programs in TGKVF grant service area. Youth-serving adults throughout the state will be invited as space is available.

Supporting Youth


IDN is working with Braxton County Middle School to provide a variety of youth development in-service training opportunities during this school year, including the Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) training series, Youth Mental Health First Aid (YMHFA), Success Coaching and Mentoring, Building Relationships and Resilience, and Preparing Students for a Successful Summer.


IDN will provide additional summer in-service training opportunities to build the capacity of staff to better support student mental health and school safety. This will include the Olweus Bullying Prevention training, implementation support, and consultation services.

Braxton Count


IDN is partnering with Clay County Schools through their Stronger Connections grant, awarded by the WVDE for the 2023-24 school year. IDN will provide staff training in Youth Mental Health First Aid (YMHFA), Connections Matter, and Building Relationships and Resilience.

Clay County
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