Resilience Rock Garden in James City County addresses the impact of historical and racial trauma

A Resilience Rock Garden has been unveiled in Freedom Park. (Courtesy of Rebecca Vinroot)

JAMES CITY COUNTY – A new rock garden symbolizing community resilience has been unveiled in James City County (JCC).

The Resilience Rock Garden was created to remind people of resilience as the world around them changes.

The garden is sponsored by the Greater Williamsburg Trauma-Informed Community Network (GW-TICN) Racial Trauma Committee and was built in partnership with JCC.

GW-TICN’s mission is to raise awareness of the impact of trauma while building community resilience.

Visitors are encouraged to paint a symbol or a message of hope on a rock for the Garden. (Courtesy of Rebecca Vinroot)

“The Racial Trauma Committee chose to build a rock garden because rocks symbolize resilience, as they remain strong even when the world around them changes,” said Rebecca Vinroot, director of the JCC’s Department of Social Services.

The garden was built in Freedom Park because of its location as one of the first free black settlements in the country.

GW-TICN focuses on the importance of recognizing and addressing the impact of historical and racial trauma to encourage the healing process, according to Vinroot.

“By situating the garden at the entrance to the colony, we hope people will use it as a place to reflect and celebrate resilience,” she said.

Vinroot said visitors are encouraged to bring a painted stone to place in the garden or take a painted stone with an inspirational symbol or message and put it back in the garden.

A dedication of the Garden took place on Monday May 2 to launch the start of Resilience Week 2022.

The garden will be a permanent space within the park where residents and visitors can reflect on their experiences, traumas and resilience.

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