Child welfare professionals must understand how trauma affects child development and behavior as well as be familiar with the resources available for treatment. The following resources equip caseworkers with practical tools and strategies for working with traumatized children, youth, and families.
Building a Trauma-Informed Child Welfare System: A Blueprint (PDF - 13,834 KB)
Supreme Court of Texas Permanent Judicial Commission for Children, Youth and Families (2019)
Presents strategies for building a trauma-informed child welfare system. The report covers topics such as culture, collaboration, youth and family voice, training, and more. The training section highlights the importance of trauma-informed training that is high-quality, culturally competent, and reflected in organizational culture.
Child Trauma Academy
Offers free online courses on several trauma-related topics as well as access to articles, videos, and other materials on working with traumatized children and youth.
Effective Training for Trauma-Informed Care (PDF - 159 KB)
National Child Welfare Workforce Institute (2020)
Examines how the Tennessee Department of Children's Services, in partnership with Vanderbilt University, improved its trauma-informed approach through the creation of the Child Protective Services Academy. Results showed trauma-informed training helped prepare caseworkers to engage with families who have experienced multiple traumas.
Five Ways Trauma-Informed Care Supports Children’s Development
Bartlett, Wilson, Moore, & Redd (2016)
Highlights five ways trauma-informed care, which encompasses a variety of approaches to working with children exposed to traumatic events, supports children's healthy development.
How Can Investigation, Removal, and Placement Processes Be More Trauma-Informed?
Casey Family Programs (2018)
Describes how the processes of investigation, removal, and placement into out-of-home care are traumatic events for children and families and how child welfare agencies should explore ways of minimizing trauma.
The Learning Center
The National Child Traumatic Stress Network
Provides an online resource and networking center for professionals and families seeking to learn more about child traumatic stress.
Recognizing and Treating Child Traumatic Stress
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration
Reviews traumatic stress, its impact on children, treatment options, and how families and those working with families can help. The webpage includes information on types of traumatic events, indicators of traumatic stress for various age groups, how to help, and more.
Child Welfare Information Gateway
Download (PDF - 224KB)
Sesame Street in Communities
Provides activities and resources designed to help child welfare professionals and parents help children address and heal prior traumatic experiences.
Trauma-Informed Strategies for Supporting Children and Youth in the Child Welfare System During COVID-19
Vivrette & Bartlett (2020)
Provides guidance for child welfare professionals on how to support youth and promote resilience and healing during the COVID-19 pandemic. The article defines trauma-related words, lists strategies to promote positive outcomes for children and youth who have experienced trauma, and describes some of the effects of COVID-19 on the child welfare system.
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Child Welfare Information Gateway
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Working With Parents Involved in the Child Welfare System
The National Child Traumatic Stress Network (2016)
Explains the ways in which unresolved trauma can impact parent ability to navigate the child welfare system. This course supports caseworkers in increasing engagement in child welfare services through increasing their understanding of the parent perspective.