part two skills in trauma informed care

Skills in Trauma-Informed Care builds on a solid Foundation

This two day continuing education intensive is for those practitioners, educators, and advocates who are ready to invest in the skills needed to deliver trauma-informed care that has the potential to change the very epigenetic expression of trauma in their clients. These skills are transferable across all medical disciplines but focus on the obstetric client. With suicide rising to be a leading cause of postpartum death in the first year, this workshop is an important step in changing how women experience their births and begin parenthood. You'll complete this second workshop with additional tools to deliver care in a way that respects your own professional boundaries but ensures your clients are much less likely to enter parenthood with a traumatic brain injury from how she was cared for during her birth. This workshop is crucial for everyone who interacts with clients during pregnancy and birth.

Open to graduates of Foundations in Trauma-Informed Care

This course builds on the Foundations workshop to equip those who interact with pregnant and birthing families with the skills to not only not inflict further harm, but to participate in a healing and therapeutic relationship that builds resilience and wellness. One doesn't have to be a therapist to be therapeutic. Skills in Trauma-Informed Care gives you practical applications that can be used in any birth setting by anyone who is invested in becoming part of the solution.

"I’ve worked in supporting women and their partners in birth for over 25 years, first as a traditional midwife and now as a doula. It wasn’t until completing Billie's course that I realised I previously had very little skills to help women who have experienced traumatic births move through their past trauma and prepare them for more empowered subsequent birth experiences."

Course content

Course Content


1. Preparing for trauma-informed care

  • Professional ethics are shared across an industry and a discipline. Identifying professional ethics and how they interact with Human Rights, Charter rights, and the law prepares you to reinforce ethical boundaries that keep you and the client safe. The process of informed consent is explored from the professional and client's perspective where handouts can enhance the process with the client. Complaints processes for ethical or legal violations is explored and strategies for developing moral courage are examined. 

2. Recognising the at-risk client

  • Building on the information in the Foundations workshop, practitioners will develop their skills in recognising the vocabulary and behaviours of an 'at-risk' client and will learn to respond to cues without asking for disclosure. 

3. Principles & practice - Safety

  • Moving beyond the basic elements of physical safety, participants will consider safety for both the client and the clinician. Hierarchical and lateral abuse will be examined, as well as bullying, sexism, racism, stigma, biases, sexual safety, homelessness, domestic violence, food insecurity, and mental health concerns. You'll learn strategies for minimising triggers in the clinic and hospital and discuss issues of informed consent and client autonomy in terms of practitioner safety.

4. Principles & practice - Trustworthiness & Transparency

  • Addressing "bait and switch" practices, patient and provider rights, and developing quality relationships in the absence of continuity of care. Identifying and disclosing professional limitations and boundaries.

5. Principles & practice - Peer Support

  • Identifying and building professional peer support. Recognising the client's circle of support and exploring community care options for the client who declines routine services.

6. Principles & practice - Collaboration & Mutuality

  • In this unit, you'll learn how to replace the stigma of 'maladaptive' behaviours through a resilience-based lens. Adaptive language will reflect a collaborative relationship where power imbalances are address. You'll develop skills in bodily awareness that to minimise power imbalances and authoritative stances. You'll learn to recognise the client's frame of reference in their decision-making to further understand and support a resilience-based paradigm of caregiving.

7. Principles & practice - Empowerment, Voice & Choice

  • Trauma impacts an individual's ability to speak and advocate for themselves. You'll learn to identifying the signs of learned helplessness and how to partner with clients as they learn new decision-making skills. Further, identifying signs of resilience will provide opportunities for client-led growth and wellness strategies.

8. Principles & practice - Cultural, Historical & Gender Issues

  • You'll examine the impact of colonialism, racism, implicit bias, and medical narcissism in the delivery of maternity services. By identifying toxic practices you'll learn to modify your approach and develop language that meets the client's needs.

9. The birth plan

  • A point of contention and ridicule, the birth plan is a powerful tool for communication when used and read appropriately. You'll learn to decipher a trauma narrative and work with clients to create a trauma-informed agreement. 

10. Practical steps - from arrival to postpartum

  • In this unit, the rubber meets the road and participants will learn to apply the principles of trauma-informed care from arrival to postpartum, in home and hospital settings.

11. The trauma-informed doula

  • The doula fills a critical role, although vilified by many industry members. The trauma-informed doula serves as a community liaison that connects clients to health care resources, encourages communication with care providers, helps clients to develop informed decision-making skills, learn new health care practices, and serves as an agent for change. 

12. Understanding the 'unassisted' option

  • Given the rise of unassisted birth and its increasing popularity, trauma-informed practitioners need to understand the impact of obstetric violence and medical patriarchy in the unassisted option. Practitioners often exacerbate the problem of medical alienation by negative and punitive responses to clients seeking specific care. You'll learn how to support post-traumatic growth and identify how you can minimise medical alienation and provide a safe port for families who are moving through trauma.

Workshop fee

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upcoming workshop

Coming soon

Part Two Skills in Trauma-Informed Care

9am - 5pm

Hamilton, Ontario

Event Details

Coming soon

Part Two Skills in Trauma-Informed Care

Stay tuned for updates on this Skills workshop to be held at McMaster University, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada

9am - 5pm

Hamilton, Ontario