2011 Conference on Children's Mental HealthYoung Minds Matter: Addressing Trauma's Impact on Children, Youth and Communities
June 23, 2011
More than 400 people attended the Hogg Foundation's free one-day conference on trauma's impact on children and youth, their families and their communities. Marriage and family therapists, professional counselors and social workers were eligible to receive continuing education units from the Hogg Foundation at no charge.
Research shows that one in four children will experience a traumatic event or experience before age 16. How children and youth respond to and recover from traumatic experiences can vary widely, depending on their emotional strength, their ability to overcome the challenging situation or event, and the support they receive from family, friends and adults.
As we learn more about the immediate and long-term impacts of trauma on children, youth and adults, we gain greater insights about trauma’s connection to emotional disturbances and mental illness. Parents, teachers, counselors and others who work with children can be far more effective and supportive when they know how to prevent, recognize, respond to and assist individuals and families who have experienced trauma.
Conference Materials and Presentations
What’s all the fuss? Evidence-based care for children affected by trauma
Jeffrey N. Wherry, Ph.D., ABPP
After decades, the topic of “child trauma” has taken root in our vocabulary, in our thought processes, in requests for funding, and even in our own Texas legislation. What does it mean to be “trauma-informed” and “evidence-based”? This presentation will trace the science of child trauma with a focus on child abuse, beginning with recognition and progressing through what is now known and not known about treatment, the impact on the brain, diagnosis and misdiagnosis, and assessment. Practical applications will be suggested along with priorities for the future (e.g., funding, training, and research).
Morning Breakout Sessions
Psychological First Aid: Overview and applications of the model
Adrienne Tinder, Ph.D. and Troy Bush
Participants will understand the rationale behind Psychological First Aid’s (PFA) development and use, the modules of PFA and their purpose, and consider possible applications of the model in their communities.
Surviving secondary trauma: Appreciating the importance of resiliency, self-care and post-traumatic growth in helping us to move past our trauma
David Conrad, LCSW
In this highly interactive session, using exercises developed by the presenter, the audience will explore the important role that resiliency, self-care and post-traumatic growth play in protecting participants from their work-related trauma and stress.
Afternoon Breakout Sessions
Children affected by trauma: What works – and what doesn’t
Frank Vega, LMFT
Understanding the impact that trauma plays in the lives of children and adolescents is key if we are to provide them with the services they need to move past survival mode. During this session attendees will learn about the different types of trauma a child may experience, the impact on the child’s development, a tool for assessing the trauma, and effective treatment approaches.
Through the looking glass: Understanding trauma through a cultural competence lens
Larry D. Brown, Jr., MPA and Regenia A. Hicks, Ph.D.
This workshop will address the impact culture has on the expression and response of children, youth and families who have experienced traumatic events. Information will be shared on working with immigrant/refugee populations and the impact of community violence on children, youth, families, and special populations, such as youth who are lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender or questioning (LGBTQ). Presenters will discuss strategies for enhancing resilience within children and youth and will highlight specific ideas on the role of the community in responding to traumatic occurrences.
Secondary Trauma: Understanding its impact and taking steps to protect yourself
David Conrad, LCSW
The presenter will define secondary trauma and describe how it is similar to and different from burnout, vicarious trauma, compassion fatigue and post-traumatic stress disorder. He also will identify potential risk factors and indicators of distress for professionals working with traumatized and distressed children and families. Personal, organizational and professional strategies that participants can use to protect themselves also will be provided.
For more information about the conference, contact Program Officer Vicky Coffee-Fletcher, (512) 475-7057 in Austin or toll-free 1-888-404-4336.