Bus Tour Aims to Raise Awareness of Effects of Childhood Trauma

In a five-city bus tour this fall, an array of organizations is seeking to build better understanding of the long-term effects of childhood trauma and the interventions that can help children heal. The tour will end with a rally on Capitol Hill.

A coalition of nonprofit groups is taking to the road to draw attention to the impact of childhood trauma.

The American Adoption Congress, the Attachment & Trauma Network (ATN), and the Association for Training on Trauma and Attachment in Children (ATTACh) are teaming up with the mental health provider Calo Programs for a five-city bus tour. The goal: to raise awareness of the adverse physical, mental, and emotional effects that can follow traumatic experiences in childhood.

The Campaign to Heal Childhood Trauma tour, which will begin at ATTACh’s headquarters in Minneapolis on November 10 and end in Washington, DC, on November 15, will also make stops in Chicago, Boston, and Philadelphia on the way. The events will be free to the public and will include presentations, workshops, and resource fairs for parents and professionals who work with children who have experienced trauma.

In a Calo Programs news release, ATN Executive Director Julie Beem noted that the event was timed specifically to highlight the challenges adoptees face.

“November is National Adoption Month, an important time to recognize that adoptive children and those in foster and residential care are at significant risk for developmental trauma disorder (DTD),” Beem said.

DTD “is a proposed diagnosis focusing on prolonged interpersonal trauma in adolescents and children which can lead to development delays,” according to the Calo statement. DTD can make it difficult for children to form attachments and control their impulses, leading to behavioral problems, it said.

Other groups are also collaborating on the tour, including the Trauma Center, Justice Resource Institute, Voices for Adoption, and Adoptions Together. At the end of the tour, the groups will take part in a rally on Capitol Hill in support of adopted and foster children.

“Not only are we advocating for this population, but we are also offering hope for healing as the tour includes informing both parents and professionals on new interventions and strategies geared specifically to work with these youngsters,” tour organizer Thomas Ahern of Calo Programs said in the release.

(Milos-Muller/iStock/Getty Images Plus)

Ernie Smith

By Ernie Smith

Ernie Smith is a former senior editor for Associations Now. MORE

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