Foundations for a Trauma-Informed Culture of Health
Trauma-Informed Care (TIC)
The impact of Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) on so many within the Trenton community was made evident through a comprehensive Community Health Needs Assessment (CHNA) that was undertaken by the Trenton Health Team (THT) and completed in 2013. The CHNA process included numerous community forums and one-on-one meetings with residents, where their experience of violence and trauma was reported. To address these reports, THT, in partnership with the National Council for Behavioral Health, began the two-year Foundations for a Trauma-informed Culture of Health initiative, with funding from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.
The principal objectives of the Foundations for a Trauma-informed Culture of Health project are to:
- build awareness regarding the impact of trauma on our community
- increase competence in handling this issue among frontline staff in a range of settings that go well beyond traditional behavioral healthcare environment, to include schools, emergency rooms, outpatient clinics, and law enforcement
- increase the use of ACE and behavioral screenings, administered in a trauma-informed and culturally/linguistically appropriate way, supported by a referral protocol that will connect more residents to the services they need.
The project is designed to focus on staff members at organizations and agencies who interact with residents in the course of their professional lives – staff who are in a position to help or inadvertently aggravate a person’s mental health and outlook through the tone and approach they take in their day-to-day interactions with the community.
The initiative was further supported by the convening of a Trauma-Informed Care steering committee (Project Oversight Team) composed of representatives of several social service organizations, representatives from various city, county, and state agencies and other area organizations. The Project Oversight Team met regularly throughout the first year of implementation and discussed strategies for recruiting and sustaining participation among agencies, identified other opportunities for supporting the goals and objectives of the initiative by offering additional training, and assessing the overall progress of the initiative.
Creating a Trenton Trauma-informed Care (TIC) Learning Community
The TIC Learning Community gives the opportunity for local agencies to work collaboratively towards promoting organizational change. Under the guidance of the National Council for Behavioral Health, organizations work to fulfill the expected outcomes of being a trauma-informed workplaces by integrating the seven domains of trauma-informed care. The domains are:
- Early screening and assessment
- Consumer-driven care and services (Consumer Voice, Choice and Advocacy)
- Nurturing a trauma-informed and responsive workforce (Workforce Development)
- Evidence-based and emerging best practices
- Creating safe environments
- Community outreach and partnership building, and
- Ongoing performance improvement and evaluation
Our Learning Community
Program offered in partnership with