Youth Are Experts of Their Own Lives and Their Own Trauma
Our teenage trainers authentically speak for and to other youth. No matter how long you have been a teacher, parent or mentor, you really do not know all the nuances of why young people behave the way they do. It is especially confusing for adults to predict if or when a child who has experienced trauma will react negatively to a particular trigger.
Reactions triggered by trauma are not personalized toward you. The main thing you need to know to be trauma-sensitive is the difference between won't and can't. When children sense a threat, their emotions take over. Not even they are understanding the cause and effect between their brains kicking into a Fight-Flight-Freeze-or-Fiddle About response and how they might react. It's not always that they WON'T do their homework or make their bed; sometimes, they just CAN'T.
ALL trauma is real to those experiencing it. Although there are general behavioral challenges that show up in youth who have experienced trauma, each has their own mixture of responses that are uniquely theirs. So, if you can be sensitive to how you interact with a child who has experienced trauma, then you will naturally do a much better job of creating a safe and compassionate space for ALL of your students, children or mentees.
We will share stories straight out of the traumatized lives of youth. I Am M.O.R.E. leaders will offer insights into their personal experiences with trauma, and how the impact of trauma has affected their interactions with adults. They will tell you what worked and what didn't; what they wish grownups would do or say differently; and what youth need most from us.
"Youth voice matters
Listen to me
Just because I'm young
Doesn't mean you ignore me
Give me the pen...
I will write my own story!"
ARE YOU READY TO LISTEN?