Adverse Childhood Events (ACEs) and Helping Children with Loss
Posted on 11th March 2020 at 12:06
If you work with children in an educational setting, hospital, professional practice or elsewhere, you may have heard about Adverse Childhood Events, or ACEs.
Adverse Childhood Events can include traumatic events, parental separation, violence, family substance misuse, family mental health problems and other events that impact young people between 0 and 17 years of age. ACEs are common, and those who have experienced 4 or more have a much higher likelihood of exhibiting developmental disruptions, social, emotional and learning problems and poor health and wellbeing outcomes later on in life.
Early intervention prevents negative outcomes
Early intervention measures can do wonders in preventing these sort of negative outcomes - that is where teachers, school leadership, psychologists, carers and many others who provide assistance to children can play an important role.
Our Helping Children with Loss programme is ACEs informed and was created with the awareness that adverse childhood events can have a permanent impact on a person's wellbeing. It helps improve the confidence of those working with young people to know that they will have the tools to handle the events encountered by the children in their care. It also helps prevent long-term difficulties resulting from unresolved pain in childhood, such as depression, substance abuse, behavioural challenges, struggles in school, anxiety, absenteeism, withdrawal and more.
Using the evidence based, proven effective Grief Recovery Method as its foundation, it provides participants with concrete action steps that they can use to help the children in their care process a loss of any kind.
Emotional First Aid for Children and Teens
Participation in a Helping Children with Loss programme helps to ensure that staff are well prepared to handle traumatic events as they occur, and that the children in their care will feel well-supported and understood. The duration and format of the sessions make it easy to work around busy schedules and allow staff to participate in small groups, where individuals can have their questions answered and discuss potential applications for their specific roles.
We like to think of it as providing Emotional First Aid in schools - just as you would expect a certain ratio of staff to be able to provide first aid, at least one member of every Key Stage should be equipped with these tools.
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