The Importance of Self-Care: Building Resilience

As part of The National Child Traumatic Stress Network (NCTSN) list of Core Concepts, Concept 12 states “[p]roper self-care is an important part of providing quality care and of sustaining personal and professional resources and capacities over time.” NCTSN so recognizes the need for resources to manage secondary traumatic exposure and its sequelae that the organization developed a national subcommittee including renowned experts on the topic to provide leadership in addressing the problem. On the NCTSN website, there is the subcommittee’s webpage that includes numerous resources such as: 

  • A fact sheet entitled “Secondary Traumatic Stress: A Fact Sheet for Child-Serving Professionals” outlines the differences among the terms “secondary traumatic stress,” “compassion fatigue,” “vicarious trauma,” and “burnout,” as well as including information on “compassion satisfaction.” This fact sheet serves as a general overview of secondary traumatic stress (STS) for those professionals who work with children exposed to traumatic events.
    • There are also facts sheets specific for job type (e.g., child welfare staff, community violence workers, educators), as well as types of trauma (e.g., child sexual abuse, disaster and terrorism). 
  • A fact sheet entitled “Taking Care of Yourself” that offers self-care strategies. 
  • A webinar by David Foy about how trauma affects spirituality (“Trauma, Spirituality, and Provider Care.”) 
  • An assessment tool for organizations to determine how STS-informed their policies and procedures are (The Secondary Traumatic Stress Informed Organization Assessment Tool: STSI-OA).

As you are utilizing the FORECAST simulations into your teaching or trainings, you may find these valuable resources to incorporate as part of learning issues or next steps.

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Dorothy Haskell