Understanding and Working with Adverse Childhood Experiences (Caithness)


1:30 pm - 5:30 pm


Bookings closed


The Pulteney Centre
Huddart Street, Wick, KW1 5BA
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Adverse Childhood Experiences – what can we do?

James McTaggart, Early Years Psychologist, Highland Council

There is increasing awareness that many children grow up in adverse circumstances, and that this can have far-reaching impacts on health, learning, behaviour and well-being. Sometimes less clear is what we can do about this – whether for individuals or to prevent adverse experiences. There are many competing approaches to the issues, and many different metaphors – including “toxic stress”, “attachment disorder”, “resilience” and even “internal sabre-toothed tigers”.

The effects of adverse childhood experiences often present “in disguise”, whether as substance misuse, risk-taking, behaviour issues, withdrawal, anxieties, or issues with learning. In recognition of the high prevalence of childhood adversity and its long term effects, Highland Council has voted to become Scotland’s first “ACE-aware” local authority.

This session will provide an understanding of what counts as childhood adversity from pre-birth to young adulthood, and will show the impacts on brain, mind and body so as to clarify how they can be recognised and what kinds of intervention can help and when.

It will link explicitly into the national Trauma Training Framework
The session will be a mix of direct input and participation, with time given for reflection and discussion.

What can I expect from this training?

By the end of this training, staff should:
• Know about the range of adverse experiences that can affect children’s well-being from pre-birth to teenage
• Understand how adverse experiences affect development, learning, behaviour and health
• Have clear ideas how, in their role, they can reduce or prevent the impacts of adverse childhood experiences
• Understand the roles of other staff, agencies and services, and how to work together using a common language
• Be confident in applying knowledge about adverse childhood experiences to joint planning for children
• Have a simple framework, based on SHANARRI, for communicating about ACEs safely and clearly to young people and families

Who should attend?

All staff who have regular contact with children and young people and/or their family members. Staff who manage or plan services which have such contact.


Bookings are closed for this event.