Working closely with National Council and the Colorado Office of Behavioral Health System of Care Initiative, SLVBHG has trained over 90 staff (including customer service staff, management and board members) in trauma informed principles and approximately 50 of the clinical staff have received several trainings and certifications specifically designed to effectively treat trauma. SLVBHG Clinical Director Victoria Romero commented that, “We have highly trained and credentialed staff members who provide integrated, holistic specialized treatment specifically for trauma.” They are able to provide trauma screening, assessment and treatment that are individualized to meet that person’s needs.

In the U.S., 61% of men and 51% of women report exposure to at least one lifetime traumatic event, and in public behavioral health settings, 90% of clients have experienced trauma. Data suggests that many individuals will have poor physical health outcomes (i.e., diabetes, heart disease, cancer) if trauma goes unaddressed, and ignoring trauma can hinder recovery in those with mental health and substance abuse illnesses (14-4884, SAMHSA, 2014).

Trauma occurs when a person is overwhelmed by events or circumstances and responds with intense fear, horror, and helplessness. Extreme stress overwhelms the person’s capacity to cope. Trauma-informed care (TIC) is an approach to engaging individuals with histories of trauma that recognizes the presence of trauma symptoms and acknowledges the role that trauma has played in their lives.

More than 150 organizations across the country have participated in National Trauma-Informed Care Learning Communities offered by the National Council since 2011.  SLV Behavioral Health Group (SLVBHG) has spent the last two years focusing on creating safer environments and improving the evidence-based trauma-sensitive services for those they serve.   SLVBHG Chief Operating Officer Kristina Daniel said, “With appropriate supports and intervention, people can overcome traumatic experiences. We examined several areas in our organization with a trauma focused lens including our screening and assessment process, our crisis services, clinical expertise and even our waiting rooms.”

SLVBHG is also working diligently with over twenty SLV community partners through our local HB 1451 SLV Collaborative Management Program to create and maintain a trauma aware and trauma-informed workforce in human services, probation, schools, healthcare and other systems who work with youth and families. The goal is to change the paradigm from one that asks, “what’s wrong with you?” to one that asks, “what has happened to you?” Trauma-informed care is an approach to engaging individuals with histories of trauma that recognizes the presence of trauma symptoms and acknowledges the role that trauma has played in their lives. SLVBHG staff has also provided TIC community training to over 100 staff in other agencies throughout the Valley in basic TIC principles with more training scheduled throughout the year. “The TIC trainings have been very well received with many agencies asking for more – and we are fortunate to have passionate, knowledgeable staff committed to working with our community.” said Communications Director Clarissa Woodworth, who works closely with our community agencies.

If you have questions or are interested in behavioral health training for you agency call 719-587-6967 and ask for Clarissa. For questions about our treatment options can call 719-589-3671 and ask for Victoria Romero or a clinical supervisor.