Whether it's a child who sees something violent, like a family member hurt or killed. Or, it's an adult who is the victim of physical or verbal abuse, trauma has a range of definitions.
Learning how to help people from all walks of life who have experienced it is the task the Illinois Center of Excellence for Behavioral Health and Justice is now taking on.
"We have some adult clients, some adolescent clients that have been exposed to trauma their whole life. Some of them it's a very isolated, one time event," says Sarra Reichwald, the director of staff and education and development.
Now, it wants organizations across the state from jails to not-for-profits like Rosecrance to learn how to properly communicate with someone who has experienced a trauma event.
"Sometimes, when we see people acting out or behaving differently, we take it personally and it's really not that," says Michelle Rock, the executive director of the Illinois Center of Excellence for Behavioral Health and Justice. "It's their coping mechanism and how to deal with trauma and how to deal with different situations."
Now, several organizations are looking at their own policies or procedures to figure out exactly where they can alleviate issues for trauma victims. Organizers say they can now take this information back to their own organizations to share what they learned and start making changes to help trauma victims.
"Just the way you ask a question, or tell someone you need to do something, you can still have your policies and procedures in place that you have to do this, this way," says Matt Kindler with the Illinois Center of Excellence for Behavioral Health and Justice. But, the way you present it can make a complete difference in how the person receives it."
Rosecrance, area psychologists and the Department of Corrections were just a few groups at today's training.