Trauma and Healing

Trauma and Healing

Those working in child welfare often work with children and adults who are working to heal from a history of trauma. Studies demonstrate the connection between Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) and a host of negative adult outcomes—from higher rates of substance use to increased cancer risks. This innovation stream focuses on understanding trauma, including how it affects development; relationships, especially children’s relationship with caregivers; and parenting.

Digital Dialogues

Are the Words "Toxic Stress" Toxic? Re-thinking the Narrative About Early Life Stress
In our concern about early adversity, are we selling short the capacity of individuals and communities to heal and grow?

Using Science to Understand the Effects of Adversity and Build Resilience
How new science is changing how we think about early childhood adversity and resilience.

Understanding and Responding Proactively to Polyvictimization
New research is helping us better understand how to interrupt the patterns of polyvictimization and its impacts.

Balancing ACEs with HOPE
ACEs are not the only important childhood experiences that have lifelong health consequences.

Helping Young Children Who Have Experienced Trauma
How trauma can affect the youngest children, and how programs and practitioners can support them.

Community Approaches to Toxic Stress
Explore a new framework of community approaches to toxic stress within the broader context of healthy development and well-being.

Hatred, Hope and Healing: Personal Reflections from an Adult Who Witnessed Domestic Violence as a Child
Learn about a family-centered approach to domestic violence that engages and supports survivors, children, and perpetrators.

Partnering to Address Childhood ACES
Learn about ACES Aware, the California partnership between medical and community-based providers and the prevention sector.


Partners United for Supportive Housing
How does it change the game when you provide stable housing to families first, then address their other complex needs? 07:55

Building Community, Building Hope
The full-length film profiles three programs engaging communities to prevent child abuse and neglect. Start the conversation in your community about what you can do to support families. 22:39

Other Tools

From the Field: Are the Words "Toxic Stress" Toxic? [PDF]

From the Field: Understanding and Responding Proactively to Polyvictimization [PDF]

From the Field: Helping Young Children Who Have Experienced Trauma [PDF]

From the Field: Hatred, Hope, and Healing [PDF]

From the Field: Community Approaches to Toxic Stress [PDF]

From Our Partners

Trauma-Informed Practice, Child Welfare Information Gateway
This page provides information on building trauma-informed systems, assessing and treating trauma, addressing secondary trauma in caseworkers, and trauma training.

National Child Traumatic Stress Network
The Network’s website is a resource for the public, professionals, and others who care about children and are concerned about child traumatic stress.

Workforce Resources for Trauma-Informed Practice, National Child Welfare Workforce Initative
A list of workforce development resources related to trauma-informed practice for child welfare practitioners, supervisors, managers, leaders, students, faculty, researchers, policymakers, and other professionals.