Stories & Successes

There are so many examples of trauma informed practices across our city. We’d love to hear how you are embedding and celebrating trauma-informed cultures in your lives, your teams, your organisations and across the system.

Hearing some of your challenges and mistakes would also be refreshing! This recognises the journey that we are all on towards becoming more trauma informed. We want to be on a journey that allows us to make mistakes, admit when we’ve got things wrong and empower ourselves and each other to be the change we want to see – with humility and empathy for ourselves and others.  

What people have said about the
Trauma Informed Plymouth Network

The Trauma Informed approaches in Plymouth had a significant impact on the thinking and considerations applied to both children and adult safeguarding. The approaches opened perspectives that had historically not featured in nor influenced decision making. It’s now regularly part of the conversation and helps us to deliver a more personal and person-centred service recognising both the needs of those at the heart of safeguarding and the professionals involved too. 

The trauma network in Plymouth has become a valuable source of information, support and guidance across many areas of our shared partnership work over the last couple of years. We have worked with the network on a number of different projects, but most notably they helped to support our policy work around lived experience engagement.

Through their input, the Commissioner, our colleagues and the public can be assured that our scheme has been shaped and influenced by people who really know our systems and what it takes to be trauma responsive.

There are many stand out pieces of work, but I would like to pay particular attention to the Leadership Workshop delivered to the South West Reducing Reoffending Board. The session was thought provoking and insightful and gave us a grounding on who we, as individuals and system leaders need to be to create a truly trauma informed system.

The Trauma Informed Network is proving to be ever more significant in influencing the commissioning and delivery of services in Plymouth. It is built into our new children and young people’s plan A Bright Future 2021-2026 as a key driver and is becoming embedded in our specifications and approaches to procurement and design of services.

We now routinely challenge ourselves when thinking about commissioning services as to whether our approach is trauma informed.

The current StreetGames, Doorstep Sport based pilot for vulnerable young people in Plymouth who are at risk of offending, particularly violent crime, is based on a Trauma Informed approach.

A close working relationship with the Network has proved essential in developing links with partners and has also helped in forging strong links with community sports coaches who have benefitted from exposure to Trauma Informed thinking.

The NWG Network have welcomed the move towards understanding and responding to trauma across the country and Plymouth is a good example of this. We have always welcomed how open to challenge and learning they have been and how proactive and transparent they are sharing the learning practice and impact from the model that they have and continue to develop there.

It was clear their method gave many other areas ideas to consider and to build on. We felt their message was so important we asked them to return and present their work at our National Conference, which once again received very positive feedback. Keep going you’re doing an amazing job!

We know of no more successful and effective grass roots approach than the Trauma-informed Plymouth Network. We have been using it as a model in work with the World Health Organisation to create Trauma-informed Communities in Europe, in meetings of our All-Party Parliamentary Group to prevent child trauma, and as a recommended model for other local areas.

The Plymouth Network has contributed to all these initiatives, through presentations, advice and its deep pool of experience and wisdom. I cannot commend them enough.

I recently chaired a Business Board meeting in which we considered the issue of adopting a Trauma Informed pledge for the organisation. The pledge concept was developed within the Trauma Informed Plymouth Network and support for it was unanimous. This is not a conversation that I believe would have happened at the organisational level of the force without the ground-breaking work that has been delivered in Plymouth over some time.

That work, supported and facilitated by the Trauma Informed Plymouth Network, has led my own organisation to view the way we deliver services into communities through a different lens, and is now serving to drive cultural change across an organisation of 5,500 people.

The additional pre-learning (for the trauma informed practice training) has been amazing – I am so impressed with the quality of the resources and the video/vimeos etc – which were really thought provoking and at times quite moving. They really helped put TI into more context and there was a fantastic mix of sources. 

It was very emotive. And it showed how simple this approach is. It’s not complicated. It’s kindness, compassion and thinking outside the box. It’s accessible to everyone!!

I would recommend this (trauma informed practice) training to everyone. I have been working in mental health and public health for 15 years, this training added a deeper understanding of why some individuals struggle to gain the support they need, and I have never thought about the negative impact of shame on an individual.

It provided my practice with a different lens, as well as highlighting how I am already working in a trauma informed way by providing the terminology for what I do. Any person working with another no matter what age, (child or adult) would benefit from this training, as would have a better understanding of the resistance to engage, which often leads to individuals being deemed as hard to reach, rather than our lack of understanding.

Join our movement for change

Our ambition is for Plymouth to be a trauma-informed city. Our independent network is open to anyone connected with Plymouth with a desire to learn about and promote trauma informed ways of being. You too can join our Network and help Plymouth become a safer and kinder place, where the impact of trauma and adversity is both recognised and responded to with sensitivity and compassion.