Trauma-Informed Practices

A program, organization, or system that is trauma-informed recognizes the widespread impact of trauma in clients, families, staff, and others involved with the system and understands potential paths for recovery. Trauma-informed practice fully integrates knowledge about trauma in policies, procedures, and practices and seeks to actively resist re-traumatization.

Skills for Responding to Sexual Assault
The University of Texas at Austin Institute on Domestic Violence & Sexual Assault released five evidence-based videos as victim-centered resources to enhance coordinated community sexual assault response efforts. These videos support training and education for a broad range of professionals, including municipal and campus law enforcement, prosecutors, victim services professionals, and advocates. The videos discuss issues as diverse as consent, the neurobiology of trauma, and alcohol and drug use.

  1. Neurobiology of Trauma in Sexual Assault Cases [13 min]
  2. Intimate Partner Violence and Sexual Assault [9 min]
  3. Alcohol and Drugs in Sexual Assault Cases [9 min]
  4. Sexual Assault Response Collaboration [7 min]
  5. Sexual Assault and Consent [10 min]

This effort is part of IDVSA’s Compendium of Resources on Sexual Assault (CORSA) Project, a resource widely available that was developed to enhance coordinated community responses to sexual assault.

A Systematic Review of Trauma-Focused Interventions for Domestic Violence Survivors
This paper reviews the trauma-based treatments that have been designed or modified specifically for intimate partner violence survivors and provides cautions and recommendations for moving forward.

Strengthening Our Practice: The Ten Essential Strengths of Sexual Violence Victim Advocates in Dual/Multi-Service Advocacy Agencies

Detailed guide outlining the following advocacy skills:

  1. Advocates understand sexual violence, including the intersections and differences with domestic violence and other types of violence.
  2. Advocates know the effects of trauma on survivors.
  3. Advocates acknowledge and own their personal beliefs about and experiences with sexual violence.
  4. Advocates show respect and caring.
  5. Advocates encourage survivors’ self-determination and autonomy. Advocates collaborate with survivors.
  6. Advocates assess the situation and respond appropriately.
  7. Advocates create safe avenues for conversation.
  8. Advocates employ culturally relevant responses.
  9. Advocates engage in self-reflection and evaluation of services.
  10. Advocates care for one another and ourselves.

Trauma-Informed Social Policy: A Conceptual Framework for Policy Analysis and Advocacy 
This paper describes how policy can better reflect 6 core principles of trauma-informed care: safety, trustworthiness and transparency, collaboration, empowerment, choice, and intersectionality. This framework conveys a politicized understanding of trauma, reflecting the reality that trauma and its effects are not equally distributed, and offers a pathway for public health professionals to disrupt trauma-driven health disparities through policy action.

Tips for Using Trauma Informed Practices Scale
Brief guide created to assist nonprofit domestic violence programs and similar organizations interested in using the Trauma Informed Practices (TIP) Scales to examine and improve upon their work.

16 Trauma-Informed, Evidence-Based Recommendations for Advocates Working with Children Exposed to Intimate Partner Violence 
Brief guide that advocates may use to assess areas in which they already excel and determine the areas in which they would like to further develop. Program staff may wish to adapt the focus on a single child or family to work with a group of children. The primary aim of the recommended approaches is to build resilience and competence in children and parents.

Creating Trauma-Informed Services A Guide for Sexual Assault Programs and Their System Partners 
A brief guide for how to work with service providers from all disciplines (medical and mental health, law enforcement, the courts, education, child welfare, and advocacy) on working with survivors to overcome barriers by creating trauma-informed services. This guide outlines what you need to know to develop trauma-informed services, what systems partners whose primary focus isn’t trauma need to know, and suggestions for cross-training with system partners.

Historical and Generational Trauma Webinar

The purpose of this webinar is to engage clinicians, community leaders, researchers, and instructors in examining specific topics related to children’s mental health, and to close the research-practice gap. The overall goal is to strengthen children’s mental health practice and policy by promoting use of evidence.

Presenters: Elder Atum Azzahir (Executive Director of Cultural Wellness Center), BraVada Garrett-Akinsanya, PhD (Executive Director of African American Child Wellness Institute), Jessica Gourneau (Clinical Psychologist at American Indian Family Center), and Melissa Walls, Ph.D. (University of Minnesota).

To get credit for watching this training on, click here.

Below are segments from the webinar that provide helpful summaries:

  1. What is Historical Trauma? [6 minutes]
  2. How do People Experience Historical Trauma? [6 minutes]
  3. What is Cultural Healing? [5 minutes]

Trauma-Informed DV Advocacy
Webinars and tipsheets from the National Center on Domestic Violence, Trauma, and Mental Health for adopting a trauma-informed approach to domestic violence advocacy.

SAMHSA 6 Principles of Trauma Informed Care
This fact sheet, developed by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, describes the 6 principles of trauma-informed care. [2 pages]

Trauma Informed Principles through a Culturally Specific Lens
This document was developed by the National Latino Network. It is a resource for defining the principles of trauma-informed work through a Latinx culturally specific lens, but is also applicable more broadly. [12 pages]

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