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Cultural Context and Child Trauma

January 7, 2011

Presented by Thema Bryant-Davis, PhD

This workshop explored the intersection of culture and child trauma to support mental health and child welfare professionals’ best practices in intervention and prevention programs. The workshop emphasized similarities and differences in working with diverse cultures/populations, with an emphasis on application in practice.

Participants learned how to:

  • Describe the components of cultural competence along with the ways in which culture can influence experiences of trauma.
  • Express an appreciation of and respect for the culture’s strengths in coping with trauma. People in every culture have the means to deal with trauma and can explain those means. Their understanding of trauma and its implications is inherent in their eventual integration of a tragedy into their lives.
  • Identify important sources of cultural identity in their lives; initially access the cultural backgrounds of individual victims or groups they serve; and find significant commonalities in order to establish a basis of communication.
  • Develop strategies for implementing culturally sensitive interventions.
  • Acknowledge limitations and differences. These may include the inability to speak or understand a language, and confusion over certain customs, rituals or spiritual understandings.

About the presenter: Dr. Thema Bryant-Davis is Director of the Cultural and Trauma Research Laboratory at Pepperdine University, where she conducts research on intimate partner abuse, child abuse, war, genocide, trafficking and the societal trauma of racism, sexism and poverty. She has published in books, journals and newsletters focusing on the cultural context of trauma recovery. Dr. Bryant-Davis is a widely sought-after presenter and trainer on interpersonal trauma theory, practice, research and policy. Using artistic expression, spirituality, psychology and culture, she is an internationally recognized lecturer, performer, speaker and life coach.

For more information, email Alan-Michael Graves.


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