Federal Resources for Helping Youth Cope after a School Shooting | youth.gov

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Friday, February 16, 2018 


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To help youth cope with school shooting incidents, youth.gov has compiled a list of federal resources those who work with youth can use to address trauma and bolster resilience.

Interagency Working Group on Youth Programs

youth.gov’s Trauma-Informed Approaches webpage features a webinar and brief on implementing a trauma-informed approach for youth across service sectors. The webinar and brief discuss the concept and prevalence of trauma; techniques for coping with and recovering from trauma at an individual and systems level; the core principles for building a framework for understanding trauma; and implementation of elements essential for a trauma-informed system as presented by the featured experts. Visit the webpage.

Youth Engaged for Change (YE4C)
YE4C’s Current Events webpage gives priority focus to the best federal resources for youth that are timely and responsive to the issues that are top-of-mind to youth today. The current focus is on what to do in an active shooter event, coping with community tragedies, building resilience, dealing with trauma, and finding mental health resources. Visit the webpage.

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

National Child Traumatic Stress Network
The National Child Traumatic Stress Network’s Responding to a School Crisis webpage provides resources for parents and caregivers, youth, and schools, including individualized guidelines for key school personnel to respond to school crises. The page also provides access to psychological first aid for schools and the 3r's of school crises and disaster. Visit the webpage.

National Resource Center for Mental Health Promotion and Youth Violence Prevention
The National Resource Center for Mental Health Promotion and Youth Violence Prevention’s Trauma, Violence and School Shooting webpage provides resources for parents, service providers, and educators who work with youth who are experiencing or have experienced trauma. Visit the webpage.

Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA)
SAMHSA’s Incidents of Mass Violence webpage provides information about who is most at risk for emotional distress from incidents of mass violence and where to find disaster-related resources. Visit the webpage.

Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA)
SAMHSA’s Coping with Traumatic Events: Resources for Children, Parents, Educators, and Other Professionals webpage provides resources and publications from the National Child Traumatic Stress Network, resources to address re-traumatization and chronic stress, and resources for disaster response professionals. Visit the webpage.

U.S. Department of Education

National Center on Safe Supportive Learning Environments (NCSSLE)
NCSSLE’s Resilience Resources webpage provides two resources on resilience. Bolstering Resilience in Students: Teachers as Protective Factors provides an overview of research on student resilience, particularly teachers' role in creating an environment where students can develop the ability to overcome challenges, and reviews key protective factors and seven strategies teachers can employ in creating environments that foster resilience in students. Adolescent Health Highlight — Positive Mental Health: Resilience presents key research findings on characteristics that are associated with resilience, describes program strategies that promote resilience, discusses links between resilience and avoidance of risk-taking behaviors, and provides helpful resources on resilience. Visit the webpage.

Readiness and Emergency Management for Schools (REMS) TA Center
REMS TA Center’s Adversarial- and Human-Caused Threats webpage offers a variety of federal agency partner resources related to planning for adversarial- and human-caused threats that may affect school districts, schools, institutions of higher education, community partners, and parents. Visit the webpage.

U.S. Department of Homeland Security

Ready.gov’s Active Shooter webpage describes what to do if you find yourself in an active shooting event, how to recognize signs of potential violence around you, and what to expect after an active shooting takes place. Remember during an active shooting to RUN. HIDE. FIGHT. Additional resources, including booklets, pamphlets, posters, and pocket cards, are also available. Visit the webpage.


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Young people who are struggling with their thoughts and feelings about the stories and images of the recent school shooting may turn to trusted adults for help and guidance. The National Child Traumatic Stress Network offers a guide for talking to children about the shooting.Download the guide. (PDF, 2 pages)