This section is designed for domestic violence advocates, mental health clinicians, and program supervisors working with children and families impacted by domestic violence. Some of the information may also be helpful for community partners and practitioners from child- and family-serving systems (such as early intervention, family court, school, mental health, and child welfare systems) and in furthering community-based, collaborative partnerships.
Children’s experiences of domestic violence are individual, widely varied, and unique. Some children do well and may not need additional supports as they grow into adulthood. Others, particularly children living in homes where they have experienced domestic violence from an early age and/or exposure to severe and prolonged violence, are at greater risk for developing trauma-related responses that may impact their growth and development. The traumatic impact of experiencing domestic violence may affect children and their non-abusive parents/caregivers as well as their relationships with each other, and the primary relationships within families that children rely upon for safety, nurturance, and protection from harm. Based on the research about resilience and with more than 30 years of practice wisdom, we have learned that the single most important resource for children in fostering resilience and healing from the traumatic effects of experiencing domestic violence is a secure attachment relationship with a loving parent or caregiver over time.
NCDVTMH has developed a trauma-informed, attachment-based approach and training resources that we hope will be helpful to our partners. For programs considering how to build trauma-informed, family-centered services for children and families impacted by DV and other trauma, you will find information, best practice guidance, evidence-based approaches, and training resources, including free webinars, with accompanying materials, such as self-guided tools for reflection and conversation guides for team meetings (forthcoming).
New Webinar Series Launched 2014:
In 2014, we launched a webinar series, Building Trauma-Informed Services for Children, Youth and Parents Affected by Domestic Violence, which will be comprised of ten 90-minute webinars. For more information about this webinar series, click here. Announcements about upcoming webinars in this series, as well as other announcements from NCDVTMH, will be sent out via our email list. Click here to subscribe to our email list.
Tip Sheets and Other Resources:
We also invite you to view the following resources developed by NCDVTMH:
Helping Children and Teens Cope with the Effects of Domestic Violence: Fostering Healing and Resilience* (2012) (Archived Webinar)
Fingerhold Practice for Managing Emotions & Stress (Jan. 2014) (PDF)
Fingerhold Practice for Managing Emotions & Stress – Diagram (Jan. 2014) (PDF)