ROAR ACEs

Adverse Childhood Experiences, Trauma-Informed Practices and Resilience

Who the course is for?

This course is for professionals working with children and young people in all settings. Merseyside Youth Association’s RAISE Team deliver school-specific ROAR ACE training, and also non-school training for those that don’t work in the education sector.

  • ROAR ACE aims to equip participants in the following:

    1. To improve our knowledge of the nature and extent of ACEs.
    2. To understand how trauma can have profound effects on learning, behaviours, emotions and lifelong opportunities.
    3. To improve our knowledge on ACE aware and trauma-informed approaches.
    4. To understand how supportive relationships and environments that schools provide can prevent and reverse harm by building resilience.
    5. To have the confidence to practice a trauma-informed approach in your organisation.

What are ACEs?

Every child will face experiences that are normal in growing up, yet maybe emotionally challenging such as moving to a new area, studying for exams and falling out with friends. However, some children will experience more distressing or difficult environments which are adverse, with these having a potential traumatic long-lasting impact on their development, health and lifestyle.

ACEs are highly stressful and potentially traumatic, events or situations that occur during childhood/adolescence under the age of eighteen. This could be a single event, prolonged threat or breach to a young person’s safety, security, trust or bodily integrity which can have long-lasting health and social consequences. These experiences directly affect a young person and their environment and require significant social, emotional, neurobiological, psychological or behavioural adaptation. No one is immune to ACEs; although Public Health Wales research shows that three times more people suffered four or more ACEs in most deprived areas compared to the most affluent.

There are many professionals other than a teacher who come into contact with children and young people every day. All staff within the school setting from the dinner time staff to the reception staff should all have an awareness of ACEs and trauma and how this may affect a child or young person day-to-day.

Responding to ACEs and trauma is everyone’s responsibility to ensure the individual has the correct support around them. Let’s all look through a trauma-informed lens.

“I couldn't pinpoint a particular thing. I have enjoyed the whole of the training. Fran and Sophie were incredible. The training was so well delivered, I have learnt lots and I have plenty of tools now to go away with and use to (hopefully!) improve my practice. I found the training really useful on both a personal and professional level.”

What difference will this course make?

Experiencing trauma can have long-lasting health and social consequences. Trauma often results from extreme or prolonged stress in childhood, commonly referred to as adverse childhood experiences or ACEs.

ACEs are common. Almost half of adults have experienced at least one ACE in England, and 10% have experienced four or more. ACEs provide a further impetus to build stronger children rather than mend broken adults. ACEs should not define anyone’s future.

Emerging evidence shows that ACE aware and trauma-informed organisations improve behaviour, learning, attainment and support happier and resilient children and young people. The course will build upon organisations understanding of resilience and person-centred approaches by reflecting on how they currently foster a nurturing environment for all children and young people.

We aim to strengthen and coordinate responsiveness to ACEs in Liverpool. To build an ACE resilient city where children are less likely to experience ACEs. Similarly where children and families have support and resilience through adversity. For instance, we aim to help adults feel supported to mitigate the potential impact of their own ACEs. In other words, how ACEs are impacting their own health and wellbeing and that of their families.  Our aim is for children and families to have longer, healthier and happier lives.

What do delegates say about the course?

“Really powerful saying...'not what's wrong but what is strong'...I know I will use this a lot in my career counselling young children. I thought some of the wordings used by the trainers was brilliant and well thought out. They promoted a safe non-judgmental environment which gave confidence for the group to share their own experiences. I really appreciated hearing Fran and Sophie's stories and found them both relatable and very interesting girls with great energy and a lovely vibe. The course opened my eyes to the fact that I am living with trauma as I don't look at certain things the same anymore...which was great because it encouraged me to seek some counselling which I've been trying to put off.”