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CWDS Curriculum

Secondary Trauma for Child Welfare Workers eLearning

Level: Advanced

Credits: 1

Intended Audience: This course is intended for child welfare workers

Description of Course: This eLearning course addresses the impact of secondary traumatic stress, or STS, on child welfare workers who are required to investigate child abuse, remove children from their homes, interact with angry, hostile parents and the court, while at the same time, exposed to different forms of traumatic events on a daily basis, and expected to be supportive and nurturing while listening to histories of child abuse and neglect.

Intended Objectives: After completing this course you will be able to:

  • Define secondary traumatic stress (STS) and its impact on you, the child welfare worker
  • Define the terms: direct trauma, burn-out, compassion fatigue and vicarious trauma
    Identify why child welfare workers are vulnerable to STS and their need to become trauma-informed
  • Recognize the common origins and consequences of work-related stress in the field of public child welfare
  • Identify symptoms of secondary trauma in yourself and develop strategies for
    preventing the development of STS

Topics Include:

  • Building Resilience
  • Trauma Informed Practice in Child Welfare
  • Defining STS
  • Risk Factors for STS
  • Strategies to Prevent and Address STS
  • Culture and STS
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