TIME Trauma Informed Method of Engagement For Youth Advocacy Lessons in TIME
Eric Lulow, BSW Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, Public Health Advisor Alumnus of Foster Care Debra Cady, MSW, LCSW Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, Public Health Advisor Adjunct Assistant Professor, Georgetown University
Write down the following: A traumatic experience that happened to you in your childhood/growing up. One of the worst things you ever did when you were a teenager/young adult. One of your most embarrassing moments in your childhood, adolescence or young adulthood. Things/people that helped you through these tough times.
A youth or young adult advocate is a person who has lived experience in one or more child serving systems who use their personal stories as a mechanism to create messages for system change. Youth Advocacy places youth and young adults in a position of vulnerability as they face the thoughts, feelings, emotions, places, people and activities that are potential triggers to their trauma backgrounds.
Take the trauma into account Avoid triggering trauma reactions and/or traumatizing the individual Adjust the behavior of counselors, other staff and the organization to support the individual’s coping capacity Allow survivors to manage their trauma symptoms successfully so that they are able to access, retain and benefit from the services
Safety: Ensure physical and emotional safety and paying attention to discomfort or unease Trustworthiness: Maximize trust and establish clear and appropriate tasks and boundaries Choice: Maximize choices and control over the event Collaboration: Youth voices are elicited and validated, recognizing their strengths, respect for their lived experience and sharing the power Empowerment: Provide opportunities to enhance skills and confidence to further personal and professional development