Trauma-Informed Child Welfare Resources from the Chadwick Center

  • For access to the Trauma-Informed Child Welfare Practice Toolkit written by Chadwick Center staff, click here.

  • Akin, B., Bryson, S., McDonald, T., & Wilson, C. (2013). A case example of the Administration on Children, Youth and Families’ well-being framework: KIPP. Washington, DC: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

    • Abstract: This is the third in a series of three papers informed by the by the well-being framework developed by the Administration on Children, Youth and Families (U.S. Department of Health and Human Services), to further dialogue regarding the more robust integration of well-being with the safety and permanency pillars of child welfare services. This final paper presents a case example of how one jurisdiction selected an evidence-based intervention to promote the social and emotional well-being of children. This effort provides a beginning roadmap for other jurisdictions to consider as they work to identify and implement the right service at the right time to improve outcomes.
      Link to article

  • Conradi, L. (2015). Supporting the mental health of trauma-exposed children in the child welfare system. Child Law Practice, 34(1), 1, 6-7, 10-11.

    • Abstract: You are an attorney working in the dependency court system representing an adolescent with severe behavior problems. You are doing your best to help this adolescent, but she continues to be oppositional, blowing out of placements repeatedly. You are concerned she will cross into the juvenile delinquency system. The adolescent has experienced significant abuse and neglect and you wonder if those experiences could be related to her current behavior? What mental health interventions could help stabilize and put her on a healthy developmental path?
      Link to article

  • Conradi, L., Agosti, J., Tullberg, E., Richardson, L., Langan, H., Ko, S., & Wilson, C. (2011). Promising practices and strategies for using trauma-informed child welfare practice to improve foster care placement stability: A breakthrough series collaborative. Child Welfare, 90(6), 207-226.

    • Abstract: This paper will provide information on a recent Breakthrough Series Collaborative (BSC) conducted by the National Child Traumatic Stress Network on Using Trauma-Informed Child Welfare Practice to Improve Foster Care Placement Stability. Information on this particular BSC will be provided, followed by initial findings gathered from an evaluation of the BSC and metrics gathered by each of the nine participating teams throughout the BSC process.Specific trauma-informed promising strategies adopted by teams are presented along with recommendations for next steps.
      Link to article

  • Conradi, L., Landsverk, J., & Wotring, J. (2014). Screening, assessing, monitoring outcomes and using evidence-based interventions to improve the well-being of children in child welfare. Washington, DC: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

    • Abstract: This paper describes a process for delivering trauma screening, functional and clinical assessment, evidence-based interventions, and the use of progress monitoring in order to better achieve well-being outcomes.
      Link to article

  • Conradi, L., & Wilson, C. (2010). Managing traumatized children: a trauma systems perspective. Current Opinions in Pediatrics, 22, 621-625.

    • Abstract: A number of research studies have been conducted that focus on adults with cooccurring disorders who have received trauma-informed treatment. These results suggest that a ‘trauma-informed’ approach is a helpful and effective way to implement services. These same principles may be applied to work with children in order to create a ‘trauma-informed child-serving system’. Twelve literature-supported and research-supported components of such a system are introduced in this review, ranging from the importance of specialized knowledge about trauma to trauma assessment and the value of trauma-informed policy.
      Link to article

  • CW360: A Comprehensive Look at a Prevalent Child Welfare Issue. Trauma-Informed Child Welfare Practice. (Winter 2013).

    • Abstract: As anyone working in the field of child welfare in the last few years can attest, there has been increased attention placed on the role of trauma in our work. In this issue, we shift our focus from the secondary trauma experienced by the child welfare workforce (the topic of our spring 2012 issue) to the examination of trauma-informed practice with children and families involved in the child welfare system. Recognizing an overwhelming body of research on the critical impact of trauma on almost every aspect of our lives, the field of child welfare is at the dawn of major shift in how it views its work. It is no longer a question of whether to incorporate trauma-informed organizational and practice strategies into child welfare practice, but how. As a leader in helping communities navigate research and practice in child trauma, Ambit Network has been an instrumental partner in bringing together the rich collection of practical knowledge and resources you will find throughout this issue. The following articles were written by Chadwick Staff:
      The emergence of trauma-informed child welfare systems, Charles E. Wilson, MSSW
      Operationalizing trauma-informed child welfare practice using the Child Welfare Trauma Training Toolkit, Alison Hendricks, LCSW
      Trauma screening within the child welfare system, Lisa Conradi, PsyD and Cassandra Kisiel, PhD
      Link to publication

  • Hendricks, A., Conradi, L., & Wilson, C. (2011). Creating trauma-informed child welfare systems using a community assessment process. Child Welfare, 90(6), 187-2005.

    • Abstract: This article describes a community assessment process designed to evaluate a specific child welfare jurisdiction based on the current definition of trauma-informed child welfare and its essential elements. This process has recently been developed and pilot tested within three diverse child welfare systems in the United States. The purpose of the assessment is to identify strengths and barriers related to trauma and child welfare in each site, to make tailored recommendations to help the sites better understand, and to address the impact of trauma on the families served and on the child welfare system itself. The specific components of the assessment process will be explained, and a summary of some of the findings that were common across sites will be provided. Recommendations for future work will also be discussed.
      Link to article

  • Ko, S. J., Ford, J. D., Kassam-Adams, N., Berkowitz, S. J., Wilson, C., Wong, M., … Layne, C. M. (2008). Creating trauma-Informed systems: Child welfare, education, first responders, health care, juvenile justice. Professional Psychology: Research and Practice, 39, 396-404.

    • Abstract: Children and adolescents who are exposed to traumatic events are helped by numerous child-serving agencies, including health, mental health, education, child welfare, first responder, and criminal justice systems to assist them in their recovery. Service providers need to incorporate a trauma-informed perspective in their practices to enhance the quality of care for these children. This includes making sure that children and adolescents are screened for trauma exposure; that service providers use evidence-informed practices; that resources on trauma are available to providers, survivors, and their families; and that there is a continuity of care across service systems. This article reviews how traumatic stress impacts children and adolescents’ daily functioning and how various service systems approach trauma services differently. It also provides recommendations for how to make each of these service systems more trauma-informed and an appendix detailing resources in the National Child Traumatic Stress Network that have been produced to meet this objective.
      Link to article

  • Wilson, C. (2014). Integrating safety, permanency and well-being: A view from the field. Washington, DC: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

    • Abstract: This overview provides a look at the evolution of the child welfare system from the 1970s forward to include the more recent emphasis on integrating well-being more robustly into the work of child welfare.
      Link to article

  • Wilson, C., Conradi, L., & Pence, D. (2013). Trauma-informed care. Encyclopedia of Social Work. New York: Oxford Press.

    • Abstract: The concepts of trauma and trauma-informed care have evolved greatly over the past 30 years. Following the Vietnam War, professional understanding of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) increased. The greater understanding of trauma and its effects on war veterans has extended to informing our comprehension of trauma in the civilian world and with children and families who have experienced abuse, neglect, and other traumatic events. This elevated insight has led to the development of evidence-based models of trauma treatment along with changes in organizational policies and practices designed to facilitate resilience and recovery. This paper highlights the concept of trauma-informed care by providing an overview of trauma and its effects, then providing a comprehensive description of our understanding of trauma-informed care across child- and family-serving systems.
      Link to article