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Trauma-Informed Care

Trauma-Informed Care
Help Build a Trauma-Informed Culture of Care.
Experiencing a trauma can change or affect the way an individual perceives the world. Whether it's a single event, such as a natural disaster, a fire, or an automobile accident, or a more complex trauma like prolonged exposure to abuse or community violence, an individual's thoughts, feelings, and behaviors can be filtered through this perspective.

Increasing your awareness about the trauma an individual in your care has experienced and the impact it can have on her thoughts, feelings, and behavior can help you when she becomes anxious or disruptive. As you sharpen your understanding of trauma, your relationships with those in your care will be enhanced, and this, in turn, can be very useful when you’re planning interventions. Because when you have a rapport with someone who exhibits challenging behavior, you know how to reach her, how best to communicate with her, and what will help her calm down and regain control of her behavior.

To help you support the individuals in your care who have experienced trauma, we refer you to the following resources. Please note that links from this page do not represent or imply the endorsement by CPI of commercial products or opinions.
  • The CDC’s Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACE) Study. This landmark study measures 10 types of childhood traumas such as emotional and physical neglect and witnessing a parent being abused. It has found that the more trauma a person experiences as a child, the more likely he is to experience adverse health and mental health effects later in life.


  • Resilience Trumps ACEs. This Children’s Resilience Initiative (CRI) website is interactive and packed with useful resources for parents, care providers, and communities to help kids cope with trauma. Mastering a skill, building a sense of belonging, and feeling a part of a larger purpose are the top three resilience building blocks outlined by the CRI. Visit the site and access games and tools designed to help kids build resilience.


  • The Safe Start Center. Among a variety of useful tools for preventing and reducing traumatic events for kids, the Safe Start Center offers two toolkits packed with infographics about children’s exposure to violence (CEV) and tips that can help you help kids deal with trauma at home and at school. The Safe Start Initiative also offers Trauma-Informed Care tip sheets.


  • Little Children, Big Challenges: Incarceration. This SesameStreet.org toolkit is designed to help comfort and guide children whose parents are incarcerated. Tools for parents, providers, and caregivers to use with kids range from videos to storybooks to coloring activities and games. The resources focus on helping kids build security and talk about their feelings.


  • The National Council for Community Behavioral Healthcare. This organization features an infographic designed to help you provide educated, empathic, trauma-informed care. The informative poster outlines the roots, symptoms, and prevalence of trauma and provides useful coping strategies.


  • ACEs Too High News article. If you're looking to reduce suspensions and expulsions with trauma-informed interventions in your school, this article can help.

    In addressing problematic student behaviors at Lincoln High School in Walla Walla, WA, principal Jim Sporleder recognized that in many cases, punishing misbehavior was akin to piling on even more trauma for his troubled students. So he adopted a supportive, person-centered approach that helps kids learn to recognize their reactions and control their behavior. As a result, Lincoln High School has seen a significant drop in suspensions, expulsions, and written referrals. Learn more about Lincoln High, the ACE Study, and the long-term effects of childhood stress.


  • SAMHSA’s Webinars: Advancing Seclusion-Free, Restraint-Free Trauma-Informed Care. Each of these six informative webinars highlights professionals who have been instrumental in implementing trauma-informed care within their organizations. They share their challenges and successes, and they stress the importance of making the implementation of trauma-informed care an organizationwide effort. The focus is on person-centered, strength-based planning that results in a cultural shift in how staff interact with the individuals they support.


  • Top 10 Recommended Trauma-Informed Care Online Resources. Check out this article and access free online learning modules and resources such as publications, reports, webinars, screening tools, policy samples, and more.


Additionally, if you're a Nonviolent Crisis Intervention® Certified Instructor, you can attend our advanced course, Trauma-Informed Care: Implications for CPI's Crisis Development ModelSM.

This course examines the influence of trauma on behavior and offers strategies and staff approaches to promote a culture of care that is trauma informed and person centered for all stakeholders, including family members who support those in care. With a better understanding of the function of the behavior, you can better serve those who have experienced trauma. If you have an Instructor account, you can get details about this advanced course here.

Here's How to Register:
To locate an upcoming Trauma-Informed Care: Implications for CPI's Crisis Development ModelSM program, visit our Training & Events page.

An On-Site Training Option Is Also Available!
If you have a group of Certified Instructors interested in promoting a person-centered, trauma-informed culture of care, we can bring this unique training directly on site to your facility. Our On-Site Training Specialists will help you tailor the program to meet your needs.

Like all CPI programs, this course can also be brought on site to your facility through program sponsorship. A sponsoring organization hosts professionals from other organizations during a CPI training program to increase attendance and take advantage of sponsorship benefits.

For information about on-site and sponsored renewal options, please call one of our On-Site Training Specialists toll-free at 877.877.5389 or access our Needs Assessment Tool.