This is the fourth in a four part series on sustaining trauma-informed care through goal setting, data collection, monitoring, responding to regression, and communicating and celebrating success.
Each of these topics is explored in more detail in Making It Real, the team-based on line course for child-serving teams. In the course you get videos, planning guides and resources which guide your team through an implementation plan in each one of these areas. Check it out here.
Celebration is the key to success in sustaining trauma-informed care. All the stakeholders that we identified in part one need to know what we are accomplishing, how we are doing it, and the results we are achieving. A deliberate plan in this area will reap many benefits in staff pride, which leads to decreased turnover. It can result in a better reputation for the agency with regulators, referral sources, funders and donors.
It is important that the celebrating not wait until some final achievement of success- because that will never happen. Start early by creating a mechanism to share successful interventions that staff use with clients. Praise staff who show patience, compassion and flexibility. If you have an internal promotion, mention in the publicity that this person is particularly connected to the clients. Highlight TIC moments that you observe. In addition to formal avenues of recognition, administrators should be sure to notice and comment on instances of compassionate behavior. Also, notice and celebrate instances of staff treating each other well: times when people help each other, or pitch in, or reach out to someone who has had a difficult work experience. These, too, should be celebrated.
Ask managers to send a weekly paragraph about a compassionate, flexible, caring or thoughtful moment they observed. Gather these into a weekly email that is sent out to all.
As soon as you begin to have data, share it. Are restraints down? Are there more successful discharges? Is turnover down? Shout it from the roof top.
Click here for a list of ways to communicate and celebrate your success.
Celebrating helps the changes become stronger, more entrenched, more part of the agency culture. Plus, its fun!
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