CTR Focuses on Helping Children Recover from Complex Trauma
We provide support and education to caregivers, educators, clinicians, and professional agencies
Complex Trauma** affects children and youth in grievous ways. The experiences of many children are filled with such a burden from these stresses and relational losses that their development has been broadly compromised. Complex trauma can lead to a range of social, emotional, and behavioural difficulties which are hard for parents to manage. They can also lead to challenges in many other areas related to the nervous system and basic physiology.
Complex trauma refers to the cumulative toll that experiences such as neglect, emotional abuse, physical or sexual abuse, domestic violence, persistently unsafe situations, or attachment disruptions and insecurity take on children. This is particularly true when it happens in the first 5 or 6 years of life.
The difficulties that children with complex trauma experience often result in being labelled with a variety of mental health and medical diagnoses.
There are far too many children like this around us in our communities, our country, and the world. The reality is that foster children, adopted children, refugees, homeless lifestyles, and the children of mentally-ill or substance-abusing parents all suffer from the residual effects of complex trauma. CTR specializes in finding child-specific solutions by providing system-wide planning, collaboration, and intervention tools to help these children and youth heal and grow, as well as providing the support needed to care for them.
The CTR Clinical Team has developed a cutting-edge approach to the effects of Complex Trauma in children and youth. It is our belief that the most important therapeutic experiences a child can receive are in the main attachment relationships in their lives. We dedicate ourselves to building the knowledge and skills necessary for you to help children and youth. All our approaches are geared to giving simple and practical strategies that address the core needs of the child at a physical, emotional, and relational level.
All strategies are created following a thorough Functional Developmental Assessment (FDA) of the child’s strengths and weaknesses. The FDA considers the following 7 Developmental Domains:
This approach arises from the recognition that complex trauma and persistent maltreatment often affect children’s development in fairly consistent ways. Regardless of the type of maltreatment, its severity and frequency create profound, personal, and developmental effects for the children who experience them. The seven domains are adapted from the work of the National Child Traumatic Stress Network (www.nctsn.org) and other researchers. Dr. Chuck Geddes has published an article outlining some of our approach at CTR as well as a case example that can be applied to this model. (Add link to BCASW article) For some background on Complex Trauma, please read the following article produced by NCTSN: http://pathwaysrtc.pdx.edu/pdf/fpW0702.pdf.
Our approach goes through 4 stages, which you will see reflected in the case studies:
- Education of the care team and care providers regarding complex developmental trauma.
- A Functional Developmental Assessment of the child which assesses their developmental maturation or lags across 7 Developmental Domains.
- A Child-Specific Intervention Plan which aims to create developmental opportunities required by the child. Our goals here are to influence (a) case management decision-making, and (b) to give specific direction to caregivers.
- Ongoing Monitoring of the plan through caregiver and Care Team support.
- Re-assessment on the Functional Developmental Assessment every six months.
Our Interventions Focus On:
- Decreasing Stress and Hyperarousal
- Deepening Healthy Attachment
- Developing Emotional Literacy
- Focusing on the Child’s Successes
- Trauma Informed Practice
For a case specific example please see CASE EXAMPLE.
The CTR Clinical Team has developed a cutting-edge approach to the effects of Complex Trauma in children and youth.
Resources on education about trauma, complex trauma, and therapeutic strategies.
Find out how CGI is working for youth with complex trauma. You’ll be encouraged.
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We are committed to changing the lives of children and youth.
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Join our learning community and be an agent of change with children who suffer from complex trauma.