Scattergood Foundation

Advancing Innovative Strategies for Change in Behavioral Health

Institute for Safe Families

ISF works to strengthen families to create healthy, nurturing environments that promote the positive development of children and prevent family violence and adverse childhood experiences before they happen.

Martha Davis, MSS and Sandy Dempsey, MSS, MLSP
(215) 843-2046


Date Project Title
05/2010 to 05/2012 Prevention of Domestic Violence
05/2012 to 07/2013 Scattergood Scholar


National ACEs Summit Presentations

A revolution is under way, a ground-shift in the way we think about health and illness, human suffering and strength. It is a revolution with the potential to reshape physical and mental health care practices, schools, social services, juvenile justice systems, communities, families and individual lives. That was the passionate consensus of the First National Summit on Adverse Childhood...

Upterrlainarluta: Always Getting Ready

By: Linda Chamberlain, PhD, MPH

Upterrlainarluta describes the story of people subsisting on the frozen tundra of western Alaska.  The translation of this impressively long, Yup’ik Eskimo word is always getting ready. To live in this land of extremes and acclimate to all the changes that have come to the Arctic, there is a tradition of always getting ready for...

An Early Pathway to Preventing Suicide: The Role of Adverse Childhood Experiences

By: Linda Chamberlain PhD MPH


While at a recent brain-storming session about adverse childhood experiences (ACEs), a colleague echoed my mantra—“What is predictable is preventable.”   This reality came to me many years ago while training as an injury epidemiologist at a time when injuries were considered accidents that were inevitable or in other words, not...

Understanding the Weight of Trauma

Obesity prevention is now topping the charts as a public health priority.  There is an escalating obesity epidemic in the United States with the rate of childhood obesity having tripled in the past thirty years.     A highly informative, four-part HBO film series, called “Weight of the Nation,” documents a national public health crisis that is affecting the long-term health of adults and...


Every so often, you might have the chance to attend a training that gets you so excited that you’re swimming in ideas and can barely sleep that night as your brain ruminates about the potential!  I just had this experience a few weeks ago, following a four-hour presentation at the International Conference on Violence Abuse and Trauma in San Diego, California.   Drs. David Corwin and Vincent...

Exploring the Connection between Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) and Alcohol Abuse

While I was aware of the connection between adverse childhood experiences (ACEs) and substance abuse since the landmark ACE Study was published in 1998, it was only recently that I delved more deeply into the ACEs literature on alcohol abuse.   The connection between ACEs and alcohol problems illustrates many key characteristics...


This posting provides an overview of the ACE Study to initiate a running commentary on the implications and applications of ACEs. Think of this introductory post as a “crash course” on ACEs with an ongoing repository of resources built in, which we hope will encourage you to learn more. Please check back regularly for news, commentary, and updates in connection with our current ACE-related...

Linda Chamberlain, PhD, MPH Chosen as the Inaugural Thomas Scattergood Scholar on Child Behavioral Health


Linda Chamberlain, PhD, MPH Chosen as the Inaugural Thomas Scattergood Scholar on Child Behavioral Health


The Institute For Safe Families and the Scattergood Foundation are proud to announce that Linda Chamberlain, PhD, MPH has been chosen as the inaugural Thomas Scattergood Scholar on Child...

Assessing, Intervening, and Preventing Children’s Exposure to Violence

Martha Davis, MSS and Sandy Dempsey, MSS, MLSP
Co-Directors, Institute for Safe Families


The Institute for Safe Families (ISF) is a Philadelphia-based, non-profit organization whose mission is to strengthen families by creating healthy, nurturing environments that promote the positive development of children and prevent...

Institute for Safe Families

The mission of ISF is to prevent intimate and family violence and to promote the health and well being of each member of the family and the community in which they live. ISF also advocates for changes in systems and policies that affect families living with interpersonal violence.

ISF programs focus on training and education, prevention, and policy activities that will better serve the...