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Books! Educational Videos! Documentaries!

Here's a place where you can review books, educational dvds and documentaries that relate to ACE concepts or trauma-informed practices. "Education is the most powerful weapon you can use to change the world." ~ Nelson Mandela

Building Resilience to Trauma: The Trauma and Community Resiliency Models by Elaine Miller-Karas


From the book's page on Amazon:


AelaineAfter a traumatic experience, survivors often experience a cascade of physical, emotional, cognitive, behavioral, and spiritual responses that leave them feeling unbalanced and threatened. Building Resilience to Trauma explains these common responses from a biological perspective, reframing the human experience from one of shame and pathology to one of hope and biology. It also presents alternative approaches, the Trauma Resiliency Model (TRM) and the Community Resiliency Model (CRM), which offer concrete and practical skills that resonate with what we know about the biology of trauma.

In programs co-sponsored by the World Health Organization, the Unitarian Universalist Service Committee, ADRA International and the department of behavioral health of San Bernardino County, the TRM and the CRM have been used to reduce and in some cases eliminate the symptoms of trauma by helping survivors regain a sense of balance. Clinicians will find that they can use the models with almost anyone who has experienced or witnessed any event that was perceived as life threatening or posed a serious injury to themselves or to others. The models can also be used to treat symptoms of vicarious traumatization and compassion fatigue.


"My enjoyment of this book grew the further I got into it. The opening chapters aim to educate the reader in the body’s biological response to trauma… What I like most about this book is that it goes beyond the one-to-one framework of therapeutic intervention and explores the benefits of community work. It also flags up the fact that, with simple education about the body’s response to trauma, individuals can be empowered to help themselves and others." – Emma Bell, Private Practice

"Body-based trauma interventions, combined with psychoeducation about the biology of trauma, dramatically expand the options for trauma symptoms’reduction and healing―especially when ‘the story’ is inaccessible or difficult to tell. This superbly written book clearly explains these interventions so that clinicians and lay people alike can benefit. Practical, clear, compassionate . . . a major contribution to the trauma and resilience literature!" Glenn R. Schiraldi, PhD, LTC (USAR, Ret.), founder of Resilience Training International and author of The Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder Sourcebook and The Complete Guide to Resilience

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This looks like an interesting book everyone should read whether you are a bricklayer or a doctor, rich or poor, fat or skinny. Trauma can affect us all in different ways and it's important we learn to cope with it.

In Building Resilience to Trauma, the author, Elaine Miller-Karas, does an excellent job of explaining NEAR science (neurobiology, epigenetics, ACEs and resilience) in a simple, direct way.  She presents complex neurobiology using accessible language and appealing metaphors.  Best of all, she answers the question, "What's next?" 

Miller-Karas has developed a simple, powerful body-centered method to help individuals (TRM) and groups (CRM) recognize the effects of trauma in the body, learn to regulate emotional reactions, and build resilience. In her book she acknowledges the therapists who have contributed to her understanding and the development of TRM/CRM.  Those therapists include Eugene Gendlin, Pat Ogden, Jean Ayres, Francine Shapiro, and Peter Levine.  

What appeals to me about the Community Resiliency Model (CRM) is that it is designed to reach large numbers of people, and to be sustainable.  CRM does not require a mental health professional to lead the sessions. Natural helpers can be trained to teach CRM, and to support ongoing healing in their community. There is even a free an app to guide the practice of CRM skills in daily life  

CRM is very adaptable. It can be used to address shock trauma (resulting from man-made or natural disasters), as well as developmental and historical trauma. CRM has been used in several countries and in several languages. Research on its effectiveness has been encouraging. Miller-Karas and her team hope that further research will find that CRM is an effective, evidenced-based approach to the treatment of trauma.  

After reading the book, and talking with staff at the Trauma Resource Institute, I have decided to apply to become a CRM Skills Trainer.  I'll get back to you later and report on how it goes! 

Deborah Bock
Anchorage, Alaska  

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