Trauma Prevention & Resilience Development

What is trauma?

Trauma is a widespread, harmful and costly public health problem. It occurs as a result of violence, abuse, neglect, loss, disaster, war and other emotionally harmful experiences. Trauma has no boundaries with regard to age, gender, socioeconomic status, race, ethnicity, geography or sexual orientation. diseases. It is an almost universal experience of people with mental and substance use disorders. The need to address trauma is increasingly viewed as an important component of effective human services delivery.

Individual trauma results from an event or series of events or set of circumstances that is experienced by an individual as physically or emotionally harmful or life-threatening and that has lasting adverse effects on the individuals functioning  and mental, physical, social, emotional or spiritual well-being. (see “SAMHSA’s Concept of Trauma and Guidance for a Trauma-Informed Approach”,, 2014)

The Agency of Human Services is committed to being a trauma-informed and trauma-responsive organization. We work to foster a human services system that employs and practices trauma-informed principles in relation to staff and the individuals and families we serve.


If you would like more information about what AHS is doing to become a trauma informed system of care, please contact:

Auburn Watersong, Director of Trauma Prevention and Resilience Development, at

More Information

For more information, or to learn more about trauma or resilience, see below:

Websites and Webpages


Books about Trauma & Adversity

  • Brainstorm: The Power and Purpose of the Teenage Brain, Siegel, Daniel, 2013, Penguin Group.
  • The Body Keeps Score: Mind, Brain, and Body in the Transformation of Trauma; Van Der Kolk, Bessel, MD,  2014, Penguin Publishing.
  • The Boy Who Was Raised As a Dog: And Other Stories from a Child Psychiatrist's Notebook - What Traumatized Children Can Teach Us About Loss, Love, and Healing; Perry, Bruce
  • Deep Brain Learning: evidence-based essentials in education, treatment, and youth development: Brendtro Larry and Martin, Mitchell, 2015.
  • Healing Developmental Trauma: How Early Trauma Affects Self-Regulation, Self-Image and the Capacity for Relationship; Heller, Laurence, PhD and Lapierre, Aline, PsyD, 2012, North Atlantic Books.
  • The Deepest Well: Healing the Long Term Effects of Childhood Adversity; Burke Harris, Nadine MD, 2018, Mariner Books.
  • Trauma-Sensitive Mindfulness: Practices for Safe and Transformative Healing; Treleaven, Davis A., 2018, WW Norton and Co., Inc.

Books about Resilience

  • Bounce: Overcoming Adversity, Building Resilience, and Finding Joy; Gaisford, Cassandra. 2017, Blue Girraffe Publishing.
  • Building Resilience in Children and Teens: Giving Kids Roots and Wings; Ginsburg, Kenneth MD, 2015 (3rd Edition), American Academy of Pediatrics.
  • Building Resilience in Students Impacted by Adverse Childhood Experiences: A Whole-Staff Approach; Romero, Victoria E. et al, 2018, Corwin/Sage Publishing Co.
  • Nurturing Resilience: Helping Clients Move Forward from Developmental Trauma, and Integrative Somatic Approach; Kain, Kathy L. and Terrell, Stephen J., 2018, Northa Atlantic Books.
  • Reclaiming Youth at Risk: Our Hope for the Future; Bredtro, Larry K. et al, 2002, Solution Tree.
  • Research Based Strategies to Ignite Student Learning; Willis, Judy, MD, 2006, Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development.

Contact Information

Agency of Human Services
280 State Drive - Center Building
Waterbury, VT