The CHAT Clinic serves children in the age range from 3 to 21 years old and their families both within and outside the umbrella of DCP&P. CHAT’s specialty areas include adjustment to resource care, impact of trauma and loss, behavior management, sexual abuse and stress management for caregivers. Our clinic provides individual, family and/or group sessions utilizing trauma and attachment informed treatment modalities that include Trauma Focused- Cognitive Behavior Therapy, Attachment, Regulation and Competency (ARC) and Game-Based (CBT). CHAT attempts to overcome treatment barriers by providing transportation services to and from the clinic for DCP&P-involved families and in-home parent management training and family sessions, when needed. Additionally, CHAT provides mentors to clients to increase the opportunity for positive peer interactions.
Trauma Focused- Cognitive Behavior Therapy (TF-CBT) is an evidenced based treatment to address the mental health needs of children, adolescents, adult survivors and families who are battling the effects of a single, multiple or complex trauma experience, including grief, violence or abuse (Cohen & Deblinger, 2006). This treatment modality often allows both children and caregivers to better process overpowering thoughts and emotions that are related to the trauma experience/s which can provide individuals tools to learn how to manage difficult emotions in an adaptive way and manage stress, anxiety and depression. TF-CBT is a skills-based model which encourages caregivers and children to practice the critical components in session and at home in order to be effective. The core components of TF-CBT include psychoeducation, parenting skills, relaxation, affective regulation, cognitive processing of the trauma, a trauma narrative, in vivo mastery of trauma reminders as well as conjoint child-parent sessions.
Game-Based Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (GB-CBT) utilizes structured therapeutic games as a primary therapeutic intervention to treat children and adolescents who have experienced abuse (Springer & Murrell, 2013). GB-CBT adopts a directive and systematic approach to treatment while aiming to increase engagement by making therapy fun, relevant and accessible for children and their families. Through role-plays, activities, and processing, children explore and interact with their environments in a way that encourages curiosity and active learning. GB-CBT uses a strength-based approach in emphasizing skill acquisition and working closely with caregivers to reinforce children’s successes and achievements.
Attachment, Regulation and Competency (ARC) addresses the core areas of impact of trauma in children and adolescents (Blaustein & Kinniburgh, 2018). ARC aims to strengthen the caregiving system, help youth understand and effectively respond to their feelings and arousal and build resilience through the development of self-control and self-understanding. ARC meets these goals by creatively engaging children and their families, providing psychoeducation, and implementing routines and rhythms. These strategies support children and adolescents in making meaning of their traumatic life experiences that empowers them to recognize their survival strengths and re-orient them to more present, goal-oriented skills and behaviors.