Thursday, June 21, 2012

The Difference Between Physical And Emotional Safety

Tips for Foster Parents:

  • Limit stimulation - be patient and take a slower pace in introducing newness ("welcome to your new foster home, there are all the rules, now let's meet everybody in the household"), because this speed of incoming data can be cognitively understood, but is emotionally overwhelming.
  • Follow the lead of the child. 
  • Follow the pace of the child.
Tips for Caseworkers:
  • Be aware that Transition Points are emotional hot spots
  • The internal alarm goes off, signaling danger
  • Child welfare has a tendency to try to make moves as quick as possible -- this is not in the best interest of the child, in terms of making them feel safe

  • To create a place of safety for the child / teenager
  • To avoid re-traumatizing the child through further abrupt disruption
  • To create a place of order, rather than chaos.
  • To create a sense of control, rather than instability.
  • To teach the child self-regulation.

Bryan Samuels, Commissioner
Administration on Children, Youth and Families
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

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