Finding Resources for Vicarious Trauma Self-Care
David N. King, MS, PhD
The concept of vicarious trauma (VT) was first described in the research literature in the early 1980s. For a decade or more, the research concentrated on understanding the fundamental causes and its impact on the professionals affected. During the next decade, researchers began to explore methods for prevention or at least minimizing the deleterious consequences of VT.
Organizational efforts to address the potential for VT among their staff can play a role in establishing a culture that is supportive. But research has also established the importance of self-care by trauma professionals. This requires that each professional take responsibility for understanding the risk factors and develop self-sustaining practices to not only mitigate VT, but even to incorporate personal growth beyond VT to achieve what is often referred to as Vicarious Resilience.
CALiOTM offers a wealth of resources for professionals seeking to learn more about self- care and overcoming the pressures that contribute to VT. Here is a look at an effective strategy for pinpointing resources that would be most relevant for those working with victimized children.
The key to getting the best results from any computer-based system is knowing how to direct the online system to provide what is wanted and simultaneously eliminate that which is not wanted. The inability to exert this kind of control in a system like Google is the primary source of frustration with the system.
CALiO is much more responsive in this regard. Searching in CALiO, we have much greater ability to specify exactly what we want.
In this example, let’s search for resources that discuss vicarious trauma self- care for child abuse professionals.
We have three basic concepts here: vicarious trauma, self- care, and child abuse professionals. If we can instruct the computer to provide a list of resources that address all three of these concepts, and eliminate all resources that do not address all three, we will have a much greater chance of seeing useful publications without having to wade through a lot of irrelevant ones.
The key for achieving this is to insert a specific instruction that informs the computer system exactly what to look for. That key is one word – AND.
By inserting AND (it must be capitalized) between each concept, we instruct CALiO to show only those items that discuss all three concepts.
You must log in to use CALiO™SuperSearch. If you do not know your username and password, this page will help: http://calio.org.calio.idm.oclc.org/get-help/forgot-calio-login-information
After logging in, here is what you would type into the CALiO™SuperSearch box:
child abuse AND vicarious trauma AND self-care
This is what the computer system actually parses:
child abuse – 513,601 publications (most of which do not discuss VT at all)
vicarious trauma – 6,674 publications (many of which do not involve child abuse professionals)
self care – 987,429 publication (most of which do not discuss either of our other concepts)
Our search strategy yields 3,103 publications that address all three elements we are looking for. Yes, that is still a long list. And even in this list, you’ll discover just how many ways there are to incorporate these three concepts into publications that are not what you want. Still, this strategy gets you to the right territory and has eliminated a huge amount of irrelevant publications.
In future editions of this blog, I’ll explain other techniques for achieving better results when searching in CALiO.
Grants and Funding for CACs
David N. King, MS, PhD
When we think about looking for funding for CACs, it is easy to think first of federal, state and local government agencies. Too often we forget that there are many foundations and other funding organizations that usually present a less challenging application process and potentially higher success rate than government agencies. In fact, there are more than 100,000 foundations and non-profit organizations that offer funding, many of which specifically focus on child welfare and social support initiatives.
The National Children’s Advocacy Center’s Child Abuse Library Online (CALiOTM) has pulled together a wealth of tools and resources to help you identify funders and prepare successful applications for support.
The most powerful tool at your command is the Foundation Directory Online. Did you know that 90% of the foundations in the U.S. do not have a website? That means you would never be able to identify most of these potential funders using Google or other online leads. Foundation Directory Online is a huge database with detailed information about more than 100,000 foundations and other grant-giving organizations. You can match potential funders with your specific needs, examine their requirements for application, see examples of projects they’ve funded in the past, and even narrow down your search to local and regional funders that prioritize support for your area.
An example of the detailed information available for a foundation in the Foundation Directory Online can be viewed here.
In addition to the Foundation Directory Online, CALiO also provides a bounty of other resources to aid in your grant-seeking mission. These include:
• Instructive documents and websites that describe best practices for preparing your grant proposal and other grant-writing aids.
• Research publications that document the value and effectiveness of Children’s Advocacy Centers in combatting child maltreatment and assisting victims.
• Statistical resources for locating the most current data regarding child abuse nationally and regionally.
• Bibliographies of publications on more than 50 selected topics in the realm of child maltreatment and publication collections by experts doing research in areas of child maltreatment.
• And of course, CALiOTMSuperSearch, which identifies the many thousands of professional publications and research articles dealing with every aspect of child abuse.
For access to these grants and funding resources, you must log in at CALiO. You will find links to these resources in the Special Collections box on the homepage after logging in.
If you have questions about access to CALiO or need help locating resources available from CALiO, simply click the Ask A Librarian icon on the CALiO homepage.