Stephanie Carnes on post-traumatic growth and resilience: Cultural competence and creating safe environments for Central American immigrant children in today’s U.S.

We talk with Stephanie Carnes, a trauma-focused bilingual school social worker in a large public high school in New York’s Hudson Valley. Stephanie worked as the lead clinician in a federally-funded shelter program for unaccompanied children from Central America and as a consultant she challenges the districts and agencies with whom she works to re-envision the meaning of an inclusive community. We talk about the necessity to normalize mental health care, how to create safe environments for immigrant children in American schools, and the power of their resilience.


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00:00-01:45 Intros

01:46-03:35 How Stephanie began working with immigrants

03:36-06:04 Central American immigrant children’s trauma—in country of origin and through the U.S. border

06:05-08:48 Continued trauma in the U.S.

08:49-12:04 Need for interventions in schools

12:05-16:49 Desahogarse (Unburdening) trauma treatment

16:50-19:10 Post-traumatic growth

19:11-24:37 What schools and communities can do to reduce students’ trauma

24:38-27:41 Working as a consultant to a school

27:42-29:59 Helping educators to cope with secondary trauma

30:00-31:15 “This is doable work.”

31:16-34:00 Outro


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