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Children, Bereavement and Trauma

Nurturing Resilience

Paul Barnard, Ian Morland and Julie Nagy

Quick Overview

The recognition of children's natural resilience as fundamental to their ability to cope with trauma is central to this book. Deriving from the authors' experience of working with bereaved children, the book promotes the idea of healthy coping, and explores ways in which children and their families can be enabled to do this.
Details Price Qty
Paperback / softback
1999, 9.21in x 6.14in / 234mm x 156mm, 160pp
ISBN: 978-1-85302-785-7
£18.99

Description

The recognition of children's natural resilience as fundamental to their ability to cope with trauma is central to this book. Deriving from the authors' experience of working with bereaved children after the Hillsborough disaster, the book advocates a model of practice which is based on their findings: the primacy of listening to children and listening uncritically; the importance of peer-group and family support; and the value of paying attention to children's needs, not those of adults. It promotes the idea of healthy coping, and explores ways in which children and their families can be enabled to do this. Children explain "what helped me", and recommendations for practice guidelines are supplemented by extensive lists of resources and support networks.

The model can be applied to children who have experienced varying degrees of trauma: bereavement, bullying or terminal illness, for example. It also includes material which will be useful to those working with traumatised children with learning disabilities. Reflecting the views of children in conjunction with the professional expertise of the authors, this book will enable carers to reassess existing methods and forms a major contribution to the literature.

Several books exist which look at helping children cope with loss and bereavement but very few offer such a personal perspective. The authors use their own experience of working with bereaved children following the Hillsborough disaster to introduce the reader to a model of practice which they refer to as a child's "natural resilience" in coping with life trauma.

The book enables the reader to follow the process by which the project developed and gives an interesting and refreshing insight into the personal challenges faced by the authors when undertaking bereavement work with children. Practitioners who follow the traditional task-oriented model of bereavement work are likely to benefit from this different focus, which offers the reader a useful balance between the authors' personal experiences of the project and the theory that informed its development.

The book begins with an overview of the nature and extent of the Hillsborough disaster, which provided the background for subsequent disaster work with children. The authors claim that through their work with the Liverpool Children's Project they "developed a model of practice which does not pathologise children's reactions to trauma and bereavement, but recognises the child's ordinary life as a place for recovery, growth and development."

Reviews

''Children, Bereavement and Trauma: Nurturing Resilience constitutes a valuable resource, particularly for practitioners, which may be applied toward understanding and alleviating children's grief. Its focus on resilience reflects an important trend in positive psychology, characterised by a de-emphasis on pathology in favour of the scientific pursuit of optimum human functioning. Barnard, Morland, and Nagy's work suggests the need for more effective evaluative methods for intervention programs, as well as further research into the roles of culture and resilience in children's bereavement care. Overall, the book represents an impressive effort, offering readers welcome insight into the complex issues surrounding childhood grief and mourning'.'
- Death Studies

'There are few available resources for child survivors of trauma and bereavement. However, this book counts among the best of them, picking up as it does on the importance of several critical elements that might often be overlooked by traditional, medical-model interventions. Overall, this book is written in a very accessible style, with solid theoretical and experiential underpinnings for its rationale. Its major strength, however, is the way in which it gives clear suggestions for how these lessons may be applied in the practice of working with bereaved and traumatised children'
- Psych-Talk

'Theory and research are balanced with practical, child-friendly advice for working with bereaved children. The problems of evaluating this sort of work are discussed. The appendices list useful organisations, web-sites and reading lists. This is an easy-to-read, useful book showing much evidence of meaningful work with bereaved children. Well worth reading.'
- Community Practitioner

'Children, Bereavement and Trauma: Nurturing Resilience by Paul Barnard, Ian Morland and Julie Nagy argues that children's natural resilience is fundamental to their ability to cope with trauma. Derived from the author's experience of working with bereaved children after the Hillsborough disaster, the book advocates a model of practice which is based on their findings: the importance of listening to children and listening uncritically; the importance of peer group and family support; and the value of paying attention to children's needs, rather than those of adults. The book promotes the idea of healthy coping and explores ways in which children and their families can be helped to do this. Children explain "what helped me" and recommendations for practice guidelines are supplemented by extensive lists of resources and support networks. The model can be applied to children who have experienced varying degrees of trauma, from bereavement to bullying or terminal illness.'
- Victim Support Magazine

Authors