Trauma Informed And Trauma Specific Care And Practice
Bessel van der Kolk, in his most recent research on developmental impact of childhood trauma, writes:
“Childhood trauma, including abuse and neglect is probably the single most important public health challenge (we face)…a challenge that has the potential to be largely resolved by appropriate prevention and intervention” (van der Kolk, B. 2007 p.224)
Childhood trauma has both long term negative health outcomes, as well as generational transference of attitudes and behaviour. Hence, historical trauma transference across family and communal systems can result.
The work of Judith Herman recognises that, where trauma has occurred, there is usually a disconnection and disempowerment that may increase vulnerability and exposure to further adverse childhood experiences. Gudjagang Ngara li-dhi believes that part of the recovery process must involve reconnection and re-empowerment from an Aboriginal World View.
A clear understanding of Developmental Trauma in complex trauma environments is essential knowledge required to work with our Aboriginal families, children and young people who have been hurt by painful childhood experiences. Gudjagang Ngara li-dhi recognises that our work requires knowledge of the effects of childhood trauma, and acknowledges that by considering trauma informed language and practices within our work, we have the opportunity to start the healing process for Aboriginal children and young people in out of home care.