Approximately 14 percent of children and youth have experienced at least one natural disaster prior to age 18 and most children and youth have been affected by a pandemic—COVID-19.
Young people are especially vulnerable to the negative effects of natural disasters, and those who are involved in the juvenile justice system are at particularly high risk for experiencing disaster-related traumatic stress and other mental health and behavioral challenges.
However, all children and youth have the capacity for resilience and healing when they receive the right types of supports.
This Toolkit is for juvenile justice staff, supervisors, and administrators who work with and on behalf of children, youth, and families who experience a natural disaster. The information and resources included in the Toolkit provide evidence- and trauma-informed guidance for promoting positive outcomes for children and youth who experience natural disasters.
The complete version of this toolkit, including full references, is available in English or Spanish.
Section 1, Recommendations for Promoting Healing and Resilience Among Youth Involved in Juvenile Justice Who Experience Natural Disasters: Provides actionable recommendations for administrators, supervisors, and staff to prepare for natural disasters and respond to children and youth involved in these systems who experience a natural disaster.
Section 2, Promoting Healing and Resilience After Natural Disasters for Youth Involved in Juvenile Justice: Provides an overview of trauma-informed care and resilience for children and youth involved in the juvenile justice system who experience a natural disaster.
Section 3, Interventions to Support Healing and Resilience Among Youth and Families Who Experience a Natural Disaster: Provides an overview of promising and evidence-based, trauma-informed frameworks and interventions to support children and youth who experience a natural disaster.
Ensuring that your agency is prepared and trauma-informed can go a long way to help youth recover and heal from a natural disaster. Below are recommendations for administrators, supervisors, and staff to prepare for how to promote healing and resilience among youth when a natural disaster occurs.
Natural disasters can place additional demands on juvenile justice agencies and systems to respond to safety concerns and needs. Not only is it best practice for juvenile justice agencies to prepare for natural disasters before they occur, but federal law also requires state juvenile justice agencies to establish disaster plans. Use trauma-informed care and emotional well-being principles in disaster plans, policies, and procedures at the state, tribal, territory, and local level to help children, youth, and their families recover from a natural disaster.
Ensure that natural disaster planning includes specific information about how to address youth and staff emotional well-being and trauma. Consider establishing memorandums of understanding with mental health agencies to assist in resource sharing and recovery.
Develop partnerships with community agencies, organizations that tailor resources to specific populations (e.g., youth who are immigrants or from families of immigrants, LGBTQ+ youth), and religious organizations for assisting families with basic needs (e.g., clothing, food pantries).
Engage in formal partnerships with local emergency response and community agencies to ensure the juvenile justice agency and system is included in community preparedness.
Share comprehensive disaster plans widely within and outside the juvenile justice agency to ensure all stakeholders have access to natural disaster response information. Practice disaster plan implementation regularly with staff, including drills and evaluations of the drills (e.g., identifying lessons learned, amending plan as needed). Sharing and practicing disaster plans in advance of a natural disaster helps agencies collaborate and implement plans more effectively when the disaster does occur.
Provide training and staff development on how to effectively implement the disaster plan. Consider cross-agency trainings involving all individuals who may interact with youth during a natural disaster to promote relationship-building and collaboration, including parents/caregivers; community members; and child welfare, mental health, first responders, schools, and emergency personnel.
Partner with children, youth, and families to develop a preparedness, safety, and communication plan and encourage families to practice it regularly. The plan should include measures for ensuring physical safety when a disaster occurs (e.g., shelter in place, escape routes), tailored to the type(s) of disaster that occur in the local area. The plan should also address what to do when children are at home and school. Include plans for communication in the event that the child or youth becomes separated from their parent/caregiver(s) during the disaster, including easily accessible contact information for family members, caseworkers, therapists, and other supports. Identify alternative, safe placement in the event of evacuation. Review and practice the plan every few months, particularly with youth who may experience changes in placement or who may be transitioning out of care. For a sample family preparedness, safety, and communication plan, download the NCTSN family preparedness plan and wallet card.
Ensure that youth and families are informed about the nature and timing of common disasters and pandemics in your area (i.e., what time of year they tend to occur), common reactions among youth (particularly those with trauma histories), and how to access updated official disaster information.
Assist families and facility staff to identify reliable sources of information about natural disasters (e.g., website, radio, emergency lines). Encourage parents/caregivers and staff to give youth factual information about the natural disaster in simple, developmentally appropriate terms. Share apps with parents and caregivers for ideas on talking with youth about natural disasters (e.g., Help Kids Cope app, Bounce Back Now app).
Assemble an emergency supply kit and plans for meeting basic needs. Youth should have access to enough water, food, and other emergency supplies for at least 3 days and secure access to medications for at least 7 days. Help children, youth, and their caregivers identify resources for basic needs after emergency supplies have been used, including whom to call for support. For a list of resources and templates for family emergency planning, go to https://www.ready.gov.
For juvenile justice agencies and systems to provide a trauma-informed response to natural disasters, it is critical to establish an agency-wide and system-wide commitment to trauma-informed policies and daily practices before a natural disaster occurs. A trauma-informed juvenile justice agency and system is one that is healing- and resilience-focused, with youth having access to the services they need. The Juvenile Justice Reform Act of 2018 legislated several critical improvements to the juvenile justice system, including more trauma-informed interventions, changes to confinement and other dangerous practices, improvements to education delivery, more tailored services for special populations, and increased accountability for staff and youth.
Include trauma-informed principles and language in agency-wide policies and procedures, identifying exposure to natural disaster as a type of adversity that can lead to trauma.
Conduct an organizational self-assessment for trauma-informed organizations. To get started, see the Put It Into Practice #4 resource.
Implement agency- and system-wide training using an evidence- and trauma-informed curriculum tailored for justice-involved youth (e.g., National Child Traumatic Stress Network Think Trauma, Sanctuary Model).
Develop strong partnerships with mental health providers and related community organizations, as well as a system for referrals and follow-up. See Section 3 of this toolkit for a list of evidence-informed trauma and mental health interventions for youth involved in juvenile justice.
Conduct universal screening using a valid, reliable, and age-appropriate and culturally-sensitive universal screening tool to identify types of adversity exposure and symptoms of trauma in response to a natural disaster (e.g., UCLA Brief COVID-19 Screen for Child/Adolescent PTSD; Child PTSD Symptom Scale). Screening for adversity and trauma should be conducted as one component of a comprehensive, developmentally sensitive approach to assessing strengths and needs, including resilience and protective factors (e.g., PACEs Questionnaire).
Engage in comprehensive training and professional development opportunities in trauma-informed practices applicable for juvenile justice supervisors and staff (e.g., NCTSN Think Trauma, Sanctuary Model).
Complete training in evidence-informed, trauma-focused models for natural disaster preparedness and response, such as Psychological First Aid (PFA).
Conduct universal screening for adversity and trauma symptoms with youth, using a valid, reliable, and developmentally- and culturally-sensitive tool (e.g., UCLA Brief COVID-19 Screen for Child/Adolescent PTSD; Child PTSD Symptom Scale; Young Child PTSD Screener).
Become familiar with evidence-based treatments and supports for youth experiencing trauma; develop relationships with providers, community agencies, and schools that offer these types of services and supports; and make appropriate referrals to support the emotional well-being of children and youth. For a list of these approaches, see Section 3 of this toolkit and reference intervention registries such as the California Evidence-Based Clearinghouse for Child Welfare or Blueprints for Healthy Youth Development, to obtain specific information on types of interventions, their level of evidence, for whom interventions were designed, and eligibility for federal reimbursement.
Black, Latinx, American Indian, Alaska Native, and LGBTQ+ youth experience disproportionate exposure to adversity and trauma and are overrepresented in the juvenile justice system. To be effective in disaster response and promote youth well-being, juvenile justice agency policies must incorporate anti-racist, anti-oppression language and guidance for administrators, supervisors, and staff to actively protect youth and families from institutional racism and discrimination, which can cause further trauma, especially during times of emergency.
Create a senior management position dedicated to promoting diversity, equity, and inclusion at the organizational level and ensure the individual in this position participates in natural disaster preparedness and response planning.
Actively partner with the youth and families (e.g., through focus groups, committees, or other approaches) to develop language, review and assess outcome information on disparate impact, and utilize equity-focused resources to guide disaster response planning. Ensure you partner with groups who are overrepresented in juvenile justice.
Incorporate anti-racist and anti-discrimination policies and procedures within disaster plans and policies to reduce inequities in the juvenile justice system using a systematic approach, such as a racial equity impact analysis (REIA). Establish a policy review team to conduct the REIA of disaster plans and policies, ensuring representation of impacted groups on the team.
Incorporate LGBTQ+ responsive language and approaches in disaster plans and policies and explicitly outline strategies for staff to affirm LGBTQ+ identities and strengths during a natural disaster. Ensure supports are applicable to both families of choice and families of origin for LGBTQ+ youth.
Seek out and participate in training and professional development on racial diversity, equity, and inclusion, particularly regarding disproportionality in the juvenile justice system. The California Evidence Based Clearinghouse has rated several models on their evidence for reducing disproportionality (e.g., Family Assessment Response, Preliminary Protective Hearing Benchcard)—become familiar with these models and their practices.
Seek out and participate in training on the needs of LGBTQ+ youth,, using formalized resources and models. Use identity affirming language when working with youth, ensure that resources are LGBTQ+ focused and affirming, and identify LGBTQ+-affirming referrals for outside services.
For youth who are institutionalized, do not use solitary confinement to separate LGBTQ+ youth from the rest of the population or in an attempt to protect them from harassment and abuse, as solitary confinement can be detrimental to youths’ mental health and isolation may not actually improve safety.
Talk and raise awareness about diversity, equity, and inclusion. Explicitly ask staff about discrimination and racism they have experienced and seek ways to address and prevent future harm. Engage in meaningful conversations with supervisors and colleagues about racial and ethnic diversity in the workforce. These discussions should be intentional and semi-structured. Group discussions should be moderated by a leader with expertise in diversity, equity, and inclusion and should follow best practices for discussing these topics.
When a natural disaster occurs, there are often short- or long-term challenges with maintaining regular communication with family, friends, and other supports. Juvenile justice agencies should identify and use alternative communication and monitoring strategies, including virtual meetings, electronic communication, and telephone contact, when in-person contact with youth is not possible. Building an infrastructure, including supplying staff, youth, and families with necessary equipment, for alternative methods of communication before a natural disaster is critical for a seamless transition during an emergency.
Establish formal protocols for frequent and ongoing contact with youth and families during and after a natural disaster occurs to monitor their physical and emotional risk, safety, and well-being and to keep them informed about the disaster and available resources while following safety guidelines.
Build agency capacity for a seamless transition to virtual contact, visits, and services (e.g., telehealth) before a natural disaster occurs and continuously monitor opportunities for emergency and grant funding for technology supports.
Develop electronic and printable resource libraries for staff to quickly access and provide information to youth and their parents/caregivers on natural disasters, their effects, and approaches to addressing physical and emotional needs of youth.
Incorporate natural disaster communication plans into regular goal setting and service planning with youth and families, including contingency plans for when in-person contact is unavailable, methods for getting in touch with loved ones within and outside the home or residential setting, and alternative emergency contacts and supports when electronic communication may be limited.
Review the natural disaster communication plan regularly or any time a placement change or other major transition occurs.
Identify and become familiar with natural disaster-related resources for families and consider keeping printable copies of resource lists on natural disasters, their effects, and approaches to addressing physical and emotional needs of youth and their families. Keep resources easily accessible to staff, youth, and their caregivers.
For youth in institutional settings, identify creative methods and flexibility in agency operations to help them connect with family members, friends, attorneys, and other social supports during and after a natural disaster (e.g., increased access to video or phone visits, alternative communication schedules, etc.).
Juvenile justice staff can be directly impacted by a natural disaster and as essential workers, may be separated from their families and support systems or experience property loss and displacement. In addition, due to the nature and demand of their work, juvenile justice staff are at risk for experiencing secondary traumatic stress, burnout, and poor emotional and physical well-being. Staff well-being contributes to productivity, self-compassion and compassion for others, and positive engagement with youth and families. Juvenile justice systems must proactively identify and address staff well-being before a natural disaster occurs and make concerted efforts to monitor secondary traumatic reactions during times of emergency.
If staff were directly impacted by the disaster, take immediate steps to support their physical and emotional well-being by connecting staff with available supports within the agency/system and in the community.
Formalize strategies for preventing, identifying, and addressing secondary traumatic stress and vicarious trauma among juvenile justice staff and administrators by creating and implementing a workforce wellness plan that promotes high-quality, trauma-informed services and reduces staff burnout and turnover. Model self-care and work-life balance for supervisors and staff throughout the organization.
Increase staff awareness of the potential impacts of working with traumatized individuals on their own well-being and emphasize the importance of prioritizing self-care (e.g., mindfulness, exercise, good nutrition, rest, social support, counseling).
Assess staff well-being by routinely screening for secondary traumatic stress among staff (e.g., Professional Quality of Life Measure, Secondary Traumatic Stress Informed Organization Assessment Tool) and in the organization (e.g., Secondary Traumatic Stress Informed Organization Assessment), and offer information for self-care activities, employee assistance, or obtaining external sources of support.
Create “trauma-free zones” or “self-care rooms” to provide a space for mental and physical nourishment (i.e., snacks, water), including wellness activities (e.g., mindfulness, yoga, exercise, quiet time, time to connect with supportive colleagues) and resources on trauma, healing, and resilience for staff and administrators.
Provide consistent, high-quality, reflective, and trauma-informed supervision that focuses on positive and supportive professional relationships.
Identify sources of social support and enjoyable activities outside of the workplace, such as spending time with family, spiritual/religious groups, clubs, or hobbies and make a routine for spending time engaging in them each week. The best way to make a routine into a habit is to share your intentions with someone else who can help encourage you in your goals.
Reach out to supportive colleagues and supervisors about work-related stress or when you have a tough day or when a case does not end well.
Keep an eye out for unhealthy coping methods, such as drinking too much alcohol, substance use, increased arguments or tension with family or friends, or losing too much sleep. Be aware of community resources and employee assistance programs to support you with these needs if they arise. Share these resources with a colleague who may benefit from them and follow-up to check if they were successfully connected.
Remember the importance of your work and your reason for working in juvenile justice, centering your thoughts on the beneficial aspects of your work.
To provide an effective, trauma-informed response to natural disasters, juvenile justice agencies need leadership from administrators. Partnering with community agencies and other service organizations is typically an important element of best practice in juvenile justice, and during a natural disaster, these collaborations become even more critical for mobilizing an agency-wide response quickly. When a natural disaster occurs, administrators are faced with rapidly changing landscapes and must closely monitor changes in policies, recommendations for best practices, and funding opportunities.
Closely monitor changes in federal, state, territory, tribal, and county juvenile justice policies designed to address disaster-related challenges and to support child, youth, family, and staff well-being.
Engage in cross-system collaboration and natural disaster planning with other national, state, and local child- and family-serving organizations, community organizations, and emergency systems (e.g., Red Cross, FEMA, law enforcement, schools) to coordinate a trauma-informed response.
Experiencing a natural disaster can result in anxiety, stress, and fear among youth in the juvenile justice system, most of whom have already experienced some form of adversity or trauma. Natural disasters can pose new challenges, such as displacement, death or injury to a parent/caregiver or a pet, loss of possessions, or loss of contact with social supports. As with all trauma, youth will experience a range of emotions and reactions to natural disasters, with many recovering and healing without ongoing formal intervention. Age, prior experiences of trauma, support from a primary caregiver and other social supports, and the severity of impact of the natural disaster are all important factors in youth response.
There are several strategies and supports juvenile justice agencies can use to help youth recover. Many of these strategies will be implemented primarily by direct service supervisors and staff who work with youth on a day-to-day basis; however, in addition to mobilizing an agency-wide response, there are several specific actions administrators can take during and after a natural disaster to promote emotional well-being for youth. This section outlines broad natural disaster response recommendations for administrators, followed by more specific recommendations for direct service supervisors and staff.
When a natural disaster occurs, administrators are also faced with rapidly changing landscapes and must closely monitor changes in policies, recommendations for best practices, and funding opportunities.
Encourage staff and supervisors to implement trauma-informed, resilience-focused practices to identify and ameliorate disaster-related trauma (see recommendations for supervisor and staff below).
Monitor updates to best practices and emerging, promising approaches to addressing disaster-related trauma, in addition to existing evidence-informed approaches (see Section 3).
Establish protocol and procedures for identifying and addressing primary and secondary trauma reactions among staff, particularly those regularly working in the field with youth and families.
Monitor emergency and related funding opportunities to build agency infrastructure to respond to disaster-related needs for youth and maintain consistent service delivery (e.g., investing in telehealth, mental health training/consultation).
Using evidence-informed, trauma-focused approaches to respond to youth involved in juvenile justice who experience a natural disaster is important for preventing and mitigating long-term negative impacts and for promoting healing and resilience. Engaging parents/caregivers in emergency response is imperative to processing and recovering from a natural disaster. Research shows that parent and caregiver response during and after natural disasters are correlated with youth response. Because youth rely on their caregivers for information, basic needs, and support, it is important to talk with parents and caregivers about modeling calm reactions and taking their own time to process what has happened. Supporting parents and caregivers to develop family emergency and communication plans and to learn common reactions to natural disasters, how to support themselves, and how to respond to youth in their care are all critical components to a trauma-informed natural disaster response in the juvenile justice system.
In the days and weeks after a natural disaster occurs, use an evidence-informed approach to support youth (e.g., Psychological First Aid). Before asking questions or collecting information from youth and their families, begin by establishing regular contact and engaging with youth; assessing for physical and emotional risk and safety; offering ways to provide support and comfort; and connecting the child or youth to resources for stabilization, if there is ongoing crisis (e.g., loss of family or community). For additional tips on how to respond to a natural disaster in the immediate aftermath, see the Put It Into Practice #5 resource. For additional information on Psychological First Aid, see Section 3 of this toolkit.
Encourage parents and caregivers to develop awareness and skills for supporting youth in their care during and after a natural disaster. Parents/caregivers should provide factual information on what has happened and what to expect after a natural disaster. Discourage over-exposure to media about the natural disaster; download the Help Kids Cope app developed by the NCTSN for tips on talking to youth about natural disaster, and encourage engaging in regular routines as much as possible to instill a sense of normalcy.
Avoid using “debriefing” techniques by having youth talk about the details of the natural disaster in the immediate aftermath, as these approaches can increase risk for ongoing posttraumatic stress. If a child or youth shows ongoing reactions of trauma, referral to a structured, trauma-focused intervention is warranted. See Section 3 of this toolkit for a list of evidence-based, trauma-informed models for youth in juvenile justice who have experienced a natural disaster.
After initial contact is made and support and stabilization services have been provided (if necessary), begin gathering information about the needs of youth. Remember to discuss practical assistance with basic needs and supports, in addition to connection with social supports, information on coping with common reactions, and linkage to outside services if necessary. Psychological First Aid offers a number of guides, handouts, and resources for talking about coping and common reactions with youth (see Section 3). For additional tips for talking to youth about natural disaster, see the Put It Into Practice resources for this section.
Providing consistent social support during and after adversity and trauma is one of the most effective ways to prevent or reduce long-term, trauma-related mental health concerns and to promote healing and resilience. To effectively provide a vehicle for youth and families to share their disaster-related needs, juvenile justice supervisors and staff must initiate and maintain regular contact with youth during and after a natural disaster.
When in-person contact is not possible, it is essential to identify alternative ways to connect with youth and help them establish and maintain contact with others in their support network, including through the use of technology (e.g., telephone, text messaging, virtual meetings).
Support and help maintain social connections between youth and their families, friends, and communities to provide social support and ongoing information about their safety.
Tailor strategies to the youth’s age and developmental stage. Ensure that older children and adolescents have contact with peers, siblings, caring adults, and/or other social supports.
For youth who are in institutional settings, identify creative and flexible methods to help them connect with social supports.
Research shows that violence in the home, abuse, and neglect increase during and shortly after natural disasters. Proactively conducting risk and safety assessments, trauma-focused screenings, and referrals to trauma-informed, culturally responsive services and supports increases the chances that youth will recover from a natural disaster.
Actively monitor the well-being, strengths, and needs of children, youth, and their parents/caregivers. Screen youth for adversity, separation, types and details of natural disaster exposure, and disaster-related trauma symptoms using a valid, reliable, and developmentally- and culturally-sensitive tool (e.g., UCLA Brief COVID-19 Screen for Child/Adolescent PTSD; Child PTSD Symptom Scale; SAMHSA Child/Youth and Adult Assessment and Referral Tools).
For youth experiencing moderate levels of distress in the weeks following a natural disaster, consider using a short-term, evidence-based model to promote coping with natural disaster, such as Skills for Psychological Recovery (SPR). See Section 3 of this toolkit for more information on SPR.
For youth experiencing severe distress or who have not shown improvement six weeks after a natural disaster, refer them for formal evidence-based, trauma-informed treatment. For a list of evidence-based treatments that have been used with youth in juvenile justice, child welfare, and/or in response to natural disaster, see Section 3 of this toolkit.
When a natural disaster occurs, juvenile justice supervisors and staff often experience similar stressors and events as the youth in their care. Monitoring and addressing signs of burnout and secondary traumatic stress are critical for sustaining the emotional well-being of the workforce, especially during times of emergency.
Learn about the signs of secondary and vicarious trauma and monitor yourself for these signs during and after a natural disaster. Try using a standardized tool to check your reactions (e.g., PROQoL; Secondary Traumatic Stress Scale).
Use strategies and activities to prevent or reduce trauma symptoms, such as relaxation (e.g., deep breathing, visual imagery), engaging in enjoyable activities or socialization, and processing and expressing feelings (e.g., through journaling, art, music). If symptoms persist, talk to your supervisor, colleagues, or employee assistance to obtain additional support and consider reaching out to a mental health provider.
1. Five Ways to Support Youth in Juvenile Justice Who Experience a Natural Disaster (PDF)
Use this resource DURING and IMMEDIATELY AFTER a natural disaster
2. Discussion Guide for Talking with Youth about their Disaster-Related Needs and Strengths (PDF)
Use this resource AFTER a natural disaster occurs, once the youth is ready
3. Questions for Older Children and Youth About Their Strengths and Needs (PDF)
Use this resource DURING and AFTER a natural disaster occurs
Considering Childhood Trauma in the JJ System American Bar Association
Creating Trauma-Sensitive Communities The Annie E. Casey Foundation
Leading with Race to Reimagine Youth Justice The Annie E. Casey Foundation
Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Youth in the Juvenile Justice System The Annie E. Casey Foundation
Transforming Juvenile Probation: A Vision for Getting It Right The Annie E. Casey Foundation
Trauma Among Girls in the Juvenile Justice System National Child Traumatic Stress Network
Trauma-Informed Court Self-Assessment National Child Traumatic Stress Network
The Essential Elements for Providing Trauma-Informed Services for Justice-Involved Youth and Families National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges
Bridging Research and Practice Project to Advance Juvenile Justice and Safety Urban Institute
Both natural disasters and other types of experiences common for youth involved in juvenile justice (e.g., exposure to violence and separation from caregivers) constitute forms of adversity that can be traumatizing. When adversities accumulate over time—as is a common experience for youth involved in juvenile justice—going through a natural disaster places youth at especially high risk for trauma and related hardships, such as mental and physical health problems, difficulties forming healthy relationships with others, difficulties learning, and limited educational and occupational success. Black, Latinx, American Indian, Alaska Native, and LGBTQ youth are overrepresented in juvenile justice. Thus, juvenile justice systems must use an anti-bias, anti-racist approach that is also trauma-informed and resilience-focused to have an effective disaster response. In addition, related services for youth involved in juvenile justice must address the specific needs of each youth and family, accounting for their age and developmental stage, racial and ethnic background, sexual orientation, and gender identity.
Given the extent of trauma, loss, separation, and other adversities among families involved in state, county, tribal, and territory juvenile justice systems, juvenile justice staff and administrators must be proactive in preventing and mitigating trauma from natural disasters. As a foundation for best practice, trauma-informed care is increasingly recognized as an effective approach to promoting healing and resilience in the juvenile justice system. This means that juvenile justice agencies must explicitly implement TIC as part of their disaster response plans, while actively resisting practices that retraumatize youth in their care during contact with law enforcement, court processes, residential placements, and probation/parole.
The good news is that, with the right supports, all youth have the capacity for resilience following exposure to adversity or trauma, including natural disasters. Juvenile justice agencies and systems are best equipped to help young people recover and thrive after natural disasters when they incorporate the best evidence to date on trauma, healing, and resilience into their policies and daily practices.
4. Organizational Self-Assessment: How Trauma-Informed is Your Agency, Organization, or System (PDF)
For use BEFORE a natural disaster occurs
Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
Age-related Reactions to a Traumatic Event (Caregiver Resource) National Child Traumatic Stress Network
Essential Elements of a Trauma-Informed Juvenile Justice System National Child Traumatic Stress Network
Human Rights Campaign. Working with the LGBT community: A cultural competence guide for emergency responders and volunteers Human Rights Campaign
Trauma-Informed Strategies for Supporting Youth in the Juvenile Justice System during COVID-19 Child Trends
Resources for Supporting Children’s Emotional Well-being During the COVID-19 Pandemic Child Trends, 2020
Research Roundup: Traumatic Events and the LGBTQ Community American Psychological Association
SAMHSA’s Concept of Trauma and Guidance for a Trauma-Informed Approach Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration
Understanding the Impacts of Natural Disasters on Children Society for Research on Child Development
What is a Trauma-informed Child and Family Service System? National Child Traumatic Stress Network
The good news is that most youth show signs of resilience after exposure to natural disasters and return to normal functioning without receiving formal intervention—including those receiving juvenile justice services. For a smaller number of youth, clinical services are needed, specifically youth who experience significant mental health and behavioral problems that are best addressed through formal trauma- and grief-focused treatment with a mental health provider. Formal treatment is more likely to be needed following severe exposures, secondary adversities (e.g., severe injury/illness, other trauma and losses, housing instability), and pre-existing or co-occurring risk factors (e.g., prior trauma or mental health conditions). Making decisions about the appropriate level of support, services, and interventions following a natural disaster should follow a tiered approach, tailoring the intensity of the intervention to the needs of each child, youth, and family.
Blueprints for Healthy Youth Development
California Evidence-Based Clearinghouse for Child Welfare Rady’s Children’s Hospital San Diego, California Department of Social Services, & Office of Child Abuse Prevention
Culture and Trauma National Child Traumatic Stress Network
Psychological First Aid: Field Operations Guide (2nd ed.) National Center for PTSD and National Child Traumatic Stress Network
PREPaRE National Association of School Psychologists
SAMHSA Disaster Technical Assistance Center Supplemental Research Bulletin: Disaster Behavioral Health Interventions Inventory Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration
SAMHSA Child/Youth Assessment and Referral Tool Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration
SAMHSA Adult Assessment and Referral Tool Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration
Skills for Psychological Recovery (SPR) Field Operations Guide National Center for PTSD and National Child Traumatic Stress Network, 2020
Title IV-E Prevention Services Clearinghouse Abt Associates
Think Trauma: A Training for Working with Justice Involved Youth, 2nd Edition National Child Traumatic Stress Network
Trauma-informed Strategies for Supporting Children and Youth in the Juvenile Justice System During COVID-19 Child Trends
Treatment for Traumatized Children, Youth, and Families Child Welfare Information Gateway
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