Published April 7, 2016
A new grant from New York State’s Office of Alcohol and Substance Abuse Services (OASAS) will benefit adolescents struggling with substance abuse, enabling the School of Social Work to partner with service providers to improve care.
The new funding will be used to train local organizations to take the potential role of traumatic life events into account when helping young people in need.
The project furthers the School of Social Work’s focus on trauma-informed care — an area of emphasis that sets the school apart from its peers. In 2000, the school began offering a trauma counseling certificate, and in 2009, faculty began incorporating a trauma-informed perspective into the curriculum.
The new $15,000 grant from OASAS advances this mission.
The funding supports a nine-month project: a learning collaborative on trauma-informed care for programs working with adolescents with substance abuse disorders. The main objective is to help workers in these programs be knowledgeable about trauma-informed practices and to implement trauma-informed care at policy and procedural levels.
With OASAS staff, the Institute on Trauma and Trauma-Informed Care in the School of Social Work will help select participants for the learning collaborative, conduct trainings, and provide consultations and monthly coaching calls for organizational champions.
“My best hope is that the champions will help their agencies infuse trauma-informed care in their policies, practices and organizational culture, and thus will help promote a safer, more empowering environment for staff in addition to more effective, trauma-informed services for the adolescents they work with,” says Samantha Koury, project manager at the institute.
This is a great idea to help youth struggling with addiction. Many of them have had traumatic experiences, which lend to their substance abuse, so training workers to help them work through that makes a lot of sense.