PTSD Project Community Report 2020

PTSD Project Community Report 2020

Westmoreland County continues to be the permanent home to Pennsylvania’s PTSD Project.  The program includes training therapists statewide on the Residential Treatment Curriculum (RTC), specialized PTSD Aftercare services, and a variety of one-day trainings for professionals that work with youth in any manner.  The RTC, which is a twelve session treatment curriculum to help the youth that have been traumatized, was updated in 2016 to include the most current research in the field of trauma treatment.  The PA PTSD Project, in conjunction with Adelphoi Village, provided the 40-hour training to certify therapists in the RTC on two occasions in 2020 and certified 16 staff members from various facilities around the state.  In addition, 10 people that were previously certified in the RTC participated in a booster training to get certified in the updated curriculum.  The training video, produced in 2017, continues to be used in the RTC training, as well as in various one-day trauma trainings that are conducted by the PTSD Project.  The video stars a young lady from Adelphoi Village that has completed the RTC and is doing very well overall since completing the curriculum.  The video has gotten great reviews from the audiences that have viewed it during trainings this year, and it will help the PTSD Project train staff members all over the state for years to come.

            Additionally, the PTSD Project provides monthly training opportunities at the Juvenile Service Center in Greensburg, and it also provides on-site training for many placement agencies, juvenile detention centers, other probation offices, schools, and Children and Youth agencies.  In 2019, the PTSD Project provided 21 trainings and trained 565 participants in a variety of training opportunities that address PTSD, mental health issues, stress management for youth, and stress management for staff.  Like the RTC, all of our one-day trainings have been updated to reflect the most current research in the field of trauma.  The PTSD Project had added three new one-day training opportunities, Developmental Trauma Disorder, PTSD in Special Populations, and Urban Violence Traumatic Stress Response Syndrome.  The new trainings were very well received throughout the year, as they were done at various facilities all over our state.

            Members of the PTSD Project are significantly involved in the Southwest Regional Crisis Intervention (CIT) Team, which is a group that provides 40 hours of training in crisis intervention and mental health issues for local police officers, probation and parole officers, security personnel, and corrections officers.  The coordinator of the PTSD Project serves as a board member on the Ray of Hope, which is a task force that works to prevent suicides in Westmoreland County and has also earned Certification in Traumatic Stress Studies from the Trauma Center at the Justice Resource Institute.

            Future Goals for the Pennsylvania PTSD Project include:

  • Launch a website that will be home to a distance learning program where people can participate in all of our trainings online
  • Continue to certify therapists statewide in the RTC
  • Continue to provide Booster Trainings on the updated version of the RTC
  • Continue to provide regular trainings for professionals and paraprofessionals that serve youth in any capacity
  • Continue outreach to community groups and organizations
  • Research the outcomes of the RTC and PTSD Aftercare
  • Utilize trauma-informed care to enhance the services that are available to the youth of Westmoreland County.