TRAUMA INFORMED PRACTICE
TRAUMA INFORMED PRACTICE
Therapeutic Activities Group informs its projects from the concepts of the below trauma recovery model (TRM).
The TRM is influenced by Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs, Desistance theory, The Good Lives Model, Attachment theory, cognitive theory of child/adolescent development and current understanding of neurodevelopment.
The model suggests that a young person is incapable of responding positively to any formal interventions without first having structure in their lives, lets face it, no young person will want to complete worksheets about their behaviour when they don’t have a bed to sleep on or know where their next meal is coming from. Yes this is an extreme example, but worryingly not uncommon. Too often institutions will push information on a young person and almost expect positive change with the young person pushing back and acting out. Surprising? No.
The way our projects work is to build structure, routine and a positive relationship with a young person, finding common ground and simply talking. We subtly question negative attitudes and behaviour but do not challenge a young person, not at first.
It can be a very slow process to create a trusting relationship and the subsequent emotional safety that it carries, but once a relationship is established through collaboration, playfulness, acceptance, curiosity and empathy, young people are in a position where they can feel they are in an environment that can assist in personal growth from their experienced trauma.
This is what our projects endear to achieve. To assist in a young persons journey of recovery to a position where they can be challenged on their behaviour and attitudes and to a position where interventions have more likelihood of success without jeopardising relationships.
We are Trauma aware:
Our staff understand trauma, its effects and long term implications, with extensive and ongoing training in this area.
We are Trauma sensitive:
We integrate a trauma-informed approach into our operational ethos.
We are Trauma responsive:
Our staff recognise and respond to trauma, enabling changes in behaviour and strengthening resilience and protective factors.
We are Trauma-informed:
The culture of the whole system, including all work practices and settings reflects a trauma-informed approach.
ADVERSE CHILDHOOD EXPERIENCES
ADVERSE CHILDHOOD EXPERIENCES (ACES)
So what are Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs)? According to Public Health Wales, ACEs are traumatic experiences that occur before the age of 18 and are remembered throughout adulthood.
These experiences range from suffering verbal, mental, sexual and physical abuse, to being raised in a household where domestic violence, alcohol abuse, parental separation or drug abuse is present.
Evidence shows children who experience stressful and poor quality childhoods are more likely to develop health-harming and anti-social behaviours, more likely to perform poorly in school, more likely to be involved in crime and ultimately less likely to be a productive member of the community.
It is the young people who have lived through these ACEs that Therapeutic Activities Group want to work with and try to repair some of the damage experienced in their youth
Below is a video produced for Public Health Wales illustrating the potential impact of ACEs as well as a small fact sheet outlining the percentage of Welsh adults who suffered from various ACEs.