Trauma-Informed Care in Child Welfare: An Imperative for Residential Childcare Workers


residential childcare workers
secondary traumatic stress
trauma-informed care
child welfare

How to Cite

Brend, D. M., & Sprang, G. (2020). Trauma-Informed Care in Child Welfare: An Imperative for Residential Childcare Workers . International Journal of Child and Adolescent Resilience (IJCAR), 7(1), 154-165. Retrieved from


Context: Rates of traumatization among residential child welfare professionals are alarmingly high. The well-being of these professionals is associated both with their intention to stay in their jobs and outcomes of children in their care. Several risk factors threaten the well-being of child welfare professionals, including primary and secondary exposure to experiences with the potential to provoke posttraumatic stress reactions. Objectives: This manuscript details experiences empirically shown to have potential negative impacts on professional well-being, discusses why these impacts are of particular concern for residential childcare workers, and describes the types of organizational cultures and climates that appear to mitigate these negative impacts. Implications: Trauma-informed care at the organizational level is proposed both as a means to reduce harm to child-welfare professionals and promote the rehabilitation of children within the child welfare system.



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