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Trauma Training

1 September 2005

Trauma Training

Wellington Institute of Technology (WelTec) is offering two new nationally recognised qualifications for important, but often unrecognised, work in the crucial area of trauma response.

Programme Leader for the Certificate in Trauma Studies and Diploma in Trauma Management, Ruth Stewart Leach says that at some point most people have contact with someone affected by trauma.

“We see traumatic events in the news every day – accidents, floods, domestic violence, rape and assault,” says Ruth. “Many members of our community experience the long-term affects of childhood abuse, or struggle to deal with an accumulation of stressful life experiences.

“It’s not unusual to find ourselves thrust into the role of supporting those affected by these kinds of incidents. Some offer support as a professional or voluntary worker but others find themselves in this role as a friend or community member,” says Ruth.

“Without an understanding of the nature of trauma, or training in ways of coping with our personal responses, the support role can be difficult to manage.

The two new qualifications offer the chance for anyone to develop their understanding of the impact of trauma, learn practical skills to manage the process and enjoy the rewards of successfully supporting others. They also offer many people already working in trauma response to achieve academic and national recognition for work that is often unacknowledged.

The Certificate in Trauma Studies starts this month and will be taught both full-time and part-time by distance learning and block courses.

“This way of learning is perfect for people who are working full-time or have family commitments. It also suits the many volunteers working in small towns and out of the way settlements, who may be unable to attend contact courses,” says Ruth.

“The teaching approach will apply relevant theory and research to people’s personal experiences for a very practical way of learning. People will be fascinated with some new research in this area. As an example, recent New Zealand research indicates that elderly people are affected by trauma more deeply than previously known. Some theoretical knowledge and an awareness of effective and practical support strategies will really empower anyone working with traumatised people,” says Ruth.

The new programmes have been developed by WelTec with skylight – the national organisation working to support children, young people and their families affected by change, loss and grief. skylight’s reputation in the field of trauma education and its extensive community networks complement WelTec’s academic quality processes and experience in programme delivery.

skylight’s Manager Education and Professional Development Jennie Jones says that there has been a need for practical trauma support education for some time.

“People who are working in the community will benefit from these skills. If an academic approach doesn’t suit them, they will find this approach is ideal,” says Jennie. “We will focus on practical skills. They can start with a certificate and take study to a higher level with a diploma.

”By having skylight and WelTec deliver this programme together the combined skills and resources make for a really strong programme with high relevance and built-in support.”

For more information on the either programme contact 0800 WELTEC

ENDS

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