Child Protection Services & Social Services

Child Protection Services & Social Services

This section of the portal offers a range of resources relating to trauma-informed care in social services, including youth protection.

Books & Articles

Finding the Right Spot: When Kids Can’t Live With Their Parents

Created by Janice Levy.

Finding the Right Spot is a story for all kids who can't live with their parents, regardless of the circumstances. It's a story about resilience and loyalty, hope and disappointment, love, sadness, and anger, too. It's about whether life is fair, and wondering what will happen tomorrow, and talking about all of it. And finally, it's about what makes the spot you're in feel right.

Maybe Days: A Book for Children in Foster Care

Created by Jennifer Wilgocki et Marcia Kahn Wright.

Will I live with my parents again? Will I stay with my foster parents forever? For children in foster care, the answer to many questions is often "maybe." Maybe Days addresses the questions, feelings, and concerns these children most often face. Honest and reassuring, it also provides basic information that children want and need to know, including the roles of various people in the foster care system and whom to ask for help.

Protecting Children: Theorical and Practical Aspects

Created by Dr. Kathleen Kufeldt, Dr. Barbara Fallon and Dr. Brad McKenzie.

This book provides information on the key concepts regarding child welfare system. It explores Indigenous child welfare and offers conclusions and recommendations to promote positive outcomes for children and families involved in the system. 

Guides & Fact Sheets

Applying The Science of Child Development in Child Welfare System

This paper shows how the science of child development can be leveraged to strengthen and improve the public child welfare system so that it can better support the children, families, and communities it serves. It is intended for leaders in the public agencies responsible for child protection and related functions; in the private, non-profit agencies that provide many of the services in these systems; in the courts, which play a critical role in child welfare; in legislative committees that oversee child welfare and related services; and in the many other public systems, such as early childhood education, mental health, and juvenile justice, whose support is essential to success in child welfare.

- Created by the the Center on the Developing Child at Harvard University

Tool to Help Assess the Quality of the Environment of the Placement in Relation to the Possibility of Developing Anchors There

For caregivers who work with children who do not live with their parents

The overall aim of this tool is to help children develop a physical anchoring (a physical place they can call home) and an emotional anchoring (a person with whom the child can develop a relational bond). This tool enables them to assess the extent to which these children feel loved by their caregivers. Moreover, it is ideal for supporting discussions, and should be used on an annual basis.

Created by Carole Côté and Johanne Boivin and translated by the Trauma Consortium Team. 

The Importance of a Trauma-Informed Child Welfare System

Created by the Child Welfare Information Gateway.

This issue brief discusses the importance of cultivating a child welfare system that recognizes and responds appropriately to trauma. After providing an overview of trauma and its effects, the brief explores steps that are involved in transitioning to a trauma-informed system and features examples from State and local programs incorporating trauma-informed practice. It concludes by highlighting how cross-system collaborations can help promote trauma-informed child welfare practice. 

Using Trauma-Informed Child Welfare Practice to Improve Placement Stability: Breakthrough Series Collaborative

Created by the National Child Traumatic Stress Network.

This resource guide offers details about using trauma-informed child welfare practice to improve placement stability. This guide outlines the need for trauma-informed child welfare practices, how to build that knowledge within a workforce, the use of trauma-informed mental health screening and assessment, case planning and management, referral for treatment, and cross-system partnerships and collaboration. 

Trauma: What Child Welfare Attorneys Should Know

Created by the National Child Traumatic Stress Network.

This fact sheet provides child welfare attorneys with knowledge about trauma, practice tips for incorporating trauma-informed practices into legal representation, and resources to assist in the representation of clients with histories of trauma. This guide aides in the representation of their clients, with the understanding that not all suggestions will be applicable or appropriate in all cases.

Attachment, Self-Regulation, Competency (ARC) Trauma Study

Created by Delphine Collin-Vézina, Kim Coleman and Lise Milne.

This factsheet offers information on the attachment, self-regulation, and competency (ARC) trauma study. More precisely, it presents the definition of ARC model, types of trauma, repercussions in youth, especially in residential care or youth protection services.


Treating Complex Trauma in Youth in Care: The ARC Framework

Created by the Centre for Research on Children and Families.

This infographic provides information on the implementation of the ARC model for youth in care in Quebec. The model is described and how this model can be used with youth with complex trauma is discussed.


Being Trauma Aware Course

Created by the Luna Centre and the Public Health Agency of Canada.

This free three-hour course is designed to equip and empower people who work with children and youth to be a support to children who may have been exposed to maltreatment or other adverse experiences. 

The Child Welfare Trauma Training Toolkit

Created by the National Child Traumatic Stress Network.

The Child Welfare Trauma Training Toolkit (CWTTT) is a training series designed to support the infusion of trauma-informed knowledge and skills into child welfare organizational cultures. This toolkit contains targeted training for various levels and roles, resulting in positive sustainable changes in the policies, programs, and practices which lead to better outcomes for children, youth and families. Visit the TIPs Center Website for additional resources geared towards trainers and those who have been trained on the CWTTT.

Videos & Webinars

Panel of "P'tits criss": Words of Former Youth in Care - Presentation in French with translation

This panel, presented during the 2022 Trauma Symposium, is a discussion among former youth in care about trauma and institutional violence, moral asphyxiation, and the consequences of these experiences. Through excerpts from the podcast Confession of P'tit Criss, we demonstrate the importance of taking into account the life history of youth. One of the striking observations is the need to humanize services, because many young people report that they did not receive the psychological and physical care they needed.

- By Jessica Côté-Guimond, Maggy Durand & Annie Thériault.

University-Black Community Partnerships to Build Capacity for Social Change in Youth Protection

In this panel, presented during the 2022 Trauma Symposium, the question of how university/community partnerships build capacity in Black communities of Montreal, which empower Black youth aging out of care to assume leadership for social change is addressed.

- By Leith Hamilton & Elijah Olise.


Making Meaning of Attachment: Learned Patterns of Giving and Receiving Care Tell the Story of Mental Health in the Early Years

This panel, presented during the 2022 Trauma Symposium, mentions the way relationship patterns between infants and caregivers develop very early and together determine security. The questions of how the attachment pattern evolves, along with protective and risk factors, as well as how mental health develops in infancy and in the early years, are addressed.

- By Mary Rella.

Recognizing and Responding Safely to Child Maltreatment

This session, presented during the 2022 Trauma Symposium, discusses child maltreatment, including physical, sexual, and emotional abuse; neglect; and children’s exposure to intimate partner violence. The Violence, Evidence, Guidance, Action (VEGA) online evidence-based education resources, developed to assist healthcare and social service providers and students in recognizing and responding safely to child maltreatment, are presented.

- By Harriet MacMillan & Mellissa Kimber.

Children in Care and Mental Health

In this video, Dr. Jenney presents information about trauma and trauma-informed practices that should be included in interventions. She also gives tools on how professionals can help children who have experienced traumas. 

- Created by Child, Adolescent and Family (CASA) Mental Health. 

Moral Distress and Burnout Among Finnish Social Workers

This panel, presented during the 2022 Trauma Symposium, addresses the definition of moral distress, the challenges when trying to measure moral distress, as well as the results of a new measure called the Moral Distress Instrument (MDI) tested among Finnish social workers.

-  By Maija Mänttäri-van der Kuip, Denise Michelle Brend & Mari Huhtala.

Reacting to Youth Violence: How Investing in Employee Wellbeing Can Help Prevent Workplace Violence

This panel, presented during the 2022 Trauma Symposium, addresses the distress experienced by child protection workers after an act of client aggression or other types of potentially traumatic events and how it could predict subsequent victimization over time. The wellbeing of professionals, which reduces the risk of violence, is further emphasized.

- By Josianne Lamothe, Steve Geoffrion & Stephan Guay.

The Effect of Residential Care Worker Resilience on the Relationship Between Adverse Childhood Experiences and Professional Quality of Life: A Mediation Analysis

This panel, presented during the 2022 Trauma Symposium, addresses the importance of understanding the needs of residential care workers in regards to trauma-informed care training and how support is critical to building knowledge, enhancing resilience, and improving practices.

- By Lise Milne & Cody Fogg.


Trauma-Informed Child Welfare

Created by the National Child Traumatic Stress Network.

The National Child Traumatic Stress Network has developed a website providing tools and materials for building skills and increasing knowledge about childhood trauma to help child welfare administrators, caseworkers, frontline staff, mental health personnel, and caregivers understand and respond to the needs of traumatized children.

Resources in French

The following section provides additional resources in French

Videos & Webinars - In French

FR - Plus forts ensemble : le soutien social sur le lieu de travail chez les éducateurs en contexte résidentiel

This panel, presented during the 2022 Trauma Symposium, discusses the importance of support for professionals working in the child welfare and youth justice systems, as they are at risk for secondary traumatic stress, burnout, and moral distress.

- By Denise Brend & Delphine Collin-Vézina.