Trauma: Feeling out of your depth and in need of resources?
The crisis itself might be over, and the media gone, but the effects on your community or the population you work with are still very present.
In a perfect world, no one would ever have to deal with trauma. Unfortunately, in the world we live in, it is all too common, and can result from many sources, including:
- Natural disasters: earthquakes, floods, hurricanes, or tsunamis
- Accidents: car crashes, airline disasters, collapsed buildings,nuclear contamination
- Human-caused harm: shootings, bombings, ongoing war, occupation, structures
- Historical harms: past mass traumas such as enslavement, genocide, or colonization
- Harming others: killing/harming others, whether unintentionally, intentionally, or in the line of duty
- Dignity violations: being treated in ways that exclude, humiliate or belittle our humanity
Although these situations differ, the effects of the trauma they create are often remarkably similar. If those effects are not addressed, they can compound, perpetuating cycles of violence which increase suffering and impact future generations.
There’s a good chance your education didn’t include trauma training
So if trauma has impacted the community or population you serve, you may be feeling out of your depth.
- If you’re a community leader, you’ve learned how to inspire and unify the people who look to you.
- If you’re a therapist or spiritual leader, you’ve learned to walk with individuals who are grieving, distressed, and in pain.
- If you’re an educator or human rights worker, you know how to teach, inform, and advocate.
- If you’re part of an organization helping to rebuild after or in the midst of a disaster or conflict, you’ve learned to plan and implement programs.
All of these skills are vital to the people within a trauma-impacted community. However, being trauma-informed is also necessary so you recognize when people are doing well and trauma reactions. You need tools and process to support people in moving forward in healthy ways over the long-term, after the media attention has shifted elsewhere.
Effectively addressing the effects of trauma takes a clear understanding of…
- Which reactions to trauma are normal (and which are cause for concern)
- Physical release techniques to prevent further wounding
- Cycles of violence that are signs of unaddressed trauma
- Tools that help people transform trauma into resilience and growth
Human beings have experienced trauma since the beginning of time, and cultures have developed different ways of dealing with it, many of them highly effective. But urbanization and the (sometimes deliberate) breakdown of communities have led to the loss of some of these practices. In addition, the sheer number and size of traumatic events has become overwhelming.
The good news is that trauma research has identified new strategies and tools that are effective and helpful. It also affirms many traditional practices.
PeaceAfterTrauma is designed to put you in touch with the resources you need
My name is Carolyn Yoder, and I created this website to help you understand and address trauma in yourself, your community or the populations you work with.
You’ll find an introduction to the 3-part framework you see at the top of this page which will gives you an overview of trauma and resilience in individuals and groups.
You’ll see how this framework is an educational tool can help you and your community identify where you are now and what you need to move forward in positive ways.
You’ll find practical trauma tools that include processes for addressing the justice and conflict issues that may be at the root of the trauma.
Browse through the pages to find what you need to best serve you and those you work with. The end goal is healthy, resilient communities.
And if you want to be notified about the online webinars that PeaceAfterTrauma offers, and access downloads of the diagrams in the slider above, simply sign up below.