Adoption Academy was launched in 2014 by Gill Tree an adopter, foster carer, stress management and trauma expert.
Adoption Academy specialises in helping adopters, special guardians and foster carers overcome the stress of having a challenging child and teaches them to help their children counteract the negative impact of trauma through movement and touch.
We follow the philosophy of Bessel Van De Kolk that trauma is a somatic experience and all our work is informed by the principles of DDP (Dan Hughes) and nurturing attachments (Kim Golding).
The Adoption Support Fund will provide funding for courses on therapeutic parenting that are more than 1 day long. In total we provide 3 days of therapeutic parenting training which can be booked as a block of 2 or 3 days. Day 1 can be combined with day 2 and/or day 3.
Medway was the first council to have their application approved by the ASF for our 3 day Therapeutic Parenting Course.
Being a parent of a child who has suffered trauma brings a whole extra layer of stress. When faced with the challenging behaviours of a traumatised child adopters can become amongst other things, irritable, anxious, hopeless and overwhelmed. The intensity of the stress can make them feel inadequate, manipulated, exhausted and depressed.
Often the target of rage, lying, stealing, violence, verbal abuse or withdrawal, adopters will be taught strategies to bring more harmony into their home whilst becoming more therapeutic as as parent.
Many children are under or over responsive/reactive to sensory input (sounds, smells, tastes, other people). They can struggle with reading and writing, concentration and behaving at school and may have issues with physical activities such as riding a bike, swimming or climbing.
Such behaviour and developmental delay has been attributed to trauma and lack of stimulation as well as living in hostile environments before and after birth. However there is another cause to add to the mix, and one that can be easily rectified.
We are all born with primitive reflexes that are usually integrated within the first year or so of life as they no longer serve us. Think of infant reflexes such as sucking and rooting and the plantar grasp where the toes curl when the foot is stroked. Two reflexes prevalent in our children are the moro (startle) and fear paralysis reflex which if not integrated are believed to contribute to learning challenges, behavioural challenges, anxiety, emotional imbalances and overwhelm.
"I found it very interesting and useful to reflect on how I respond to stress and what little changes could help with that. It has made me think that rather than focusing on what stresses my children, I also need to be aware of my own triggers. In recognising how hard it can be to inhibit my own behaviour, I feel/hope I might be more empathetic to my son."
- Katy Liriano -
Member of the International Stress Management Association
GM Tree Training Ltd
5 Clumber Drive
Somerset BA11 2LG
T: +44 (0)203 553 1060
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