Learn About Trauma-Focused Treatments at CFGC!
Your Monthly News & Updates: December 2015
In this month's newsletter, we share how our team uses trauma-focused treatment to help Fairfield County youth deal with tragedy that does not necessarily make the news. The Child & Family Guidance Center has made trauma-focused mental health care a priority. Here's why:
  • 90% of the 3,100 children and families we served last year live in poverty and the majority of them live in Greater Bridgeport. 
  • According to the National Child Traumatic Stress Network, families exposed to urban poverty face a disproportionate risk of exposure to trauma and of becoming trauma-organized systems. Factors such as low neighborhood safety, daily hassles, and racial discrimination have been shown to increase the risk that trauma will negatively impact the family.
  • Poor families are also less likely to receive mental health treatment. That is where the Child & Family Guidance Center steps in.

In her recent report on childhood trauma, Connecticut Mirror's Arielle Levin Becker noted: 

Research has linked exposure to abuse, neglect and other forms of severe adversity in childhood to a wide range of mental and physical diseases and disorders. Can understanding this make a profound change in the way we prevent illness?"

The answer is YES. Here is a snapshot of our critical trauma-focused mental health work, which is offered at low or no cost to our clients.

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Support our Trauma-Focused Work for Children in Need  
What is Trauma-Focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy?
TF-CBT is a therapeutic intervention designed to help children, adolescents, and their parents overcome the impact of traumatic events such as sexual abuse, physical abuse, domestic and community violence, an unexpected death of a loved one, or natural disasters . 
Research has shown that TF-CBT is more effective than other trauma interventions, and successfully resolves a broad array of emotional and behavioral difficulties associated with single, multiple and complex trauma experiences. It is a humanistic, empowering, family-oriented approach to help youth and their families heal.
Meet the CFGC Trauma Team

Sharon Kutner, RN, LCSW, Jonathan Spears, LCSW, and Donna Fletcher, MA, LPC, LADC, bring a wealth of experience to their leadership of our three trauma-centered programs:
  • Trauma-Focused CBT
  • Child & Family Traumatic Stress Intervention
  • TF-CBT for Youth in the Juvenile Justice System
TF-CBT at the Child & Family Guidance Center

All children seen by our outpatient department are screened for trauma at intake, and this sets us apart from many other mental/behavioral health centers in Fairfield County. Early screening allows our team to quickly identify when TF-CBT is necessary.
  • Four of our outpatient therapists are nationally certified TF-CBT clinicians.
  • 100% of our outpatient staff are either TF-CBT or trauma informed clinicans.
  • In 2013, we completed the TF-CBT Learning Collaborative with the Department of Children & Families, through the Child Health & Development Institute/Yale Trauma Center.
  • Since then, over 200 of our clients have been treated using TF-CBT.
Child & Family Traumatic Stress Intervention Program

We are proud to offer Child & Family Traumatic Stress Intervention (CFTSI). A TF-CBT off-shoot, this evidence-based intervention is implemented immediately following a traumatic event (within 30 - 45 days), or a disclosure of physical or sexual abuse. 
  • CFTSI fills the gap between standardized acute interventions and longer-term models that address enduring post-traumatic reactions.
  • While TF-CBT can span 20 weeks and typically deals with trauma from years ago, CFTSI is short-term and focuses on recent disclosure. 
  • This intervention requires 5 to 8 sessions and is delivered by our clinicians who have received specialized training.
  • We offer CFTSI to children 7 years and up, and it is implemented with the child and their parent/caregiver together. This is the key to its success.
  • While CFTSI provides a seamless introduction to longer-term treatment (such as TF-CBT), the research shows that 65% of cases are closed after CFTSI is provided.
We Provide TF-CBT for Youth in the Juvenile Justice System

The Child & Family Guidance Center has special collaboration with the Court Support Services Division of the State of Connecticut Judicial Branch and Connecticut Renaissance to provide Trauma-Focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for Juvenile Justice-involved children aged 7 through 17, and their families.
  • More than 90% of the youth in detention have been exposed to traumatic experiences.
  • Left untreated, traumatic stress can severely disrupt normal functioning.
  • Our exciting partnership with our community partners allows us to increase children's access to effective trauma-based mental health treatment, with the goal of reducing their involvement with the juvenile justice system. 
  • We strive to assure referral, assessment and treatment of traumatized children, based on a shared plan of care across agencies.
Our Partners in Trauma-Focused Mental Health Care

Thank you to our partners in our trauma-focused work. It is our collective efforts that will help ensure that Fairfield County youth get the support they need. 
The Child & Family Guidance Center 
180 Fairfield Avenue, Bridgeport, CT 06604
203-394-6529 | www.cfguidance.org
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