An inquiry into trauma-informed practice and care for social workers in care and protection roles in Aotearoa New Zealand


  • Rachel Dyer Eastern Institute of Technology Te Pukenga
  • Charlotte Chisnell Eastern Institute of Technology Te Pukenga



trauma-informed practice, trauma-informed care, childhood trauma, social work, supervision, trauma-informed training



INTRODUCTION: This research investigates what knowledge and training social workers have in preparation for working alongside survivors of trauma. Including what support social workers receive to ensure they keep themselves safe and how comfortable they feel about accessing support to promote their self-care and emotional resilience.

METHOD: Using an exploratory research design, qualitative data has been collated through semi-structured interviews with four care and protection social workers, capturing their stories in a narrative format and comparing the data to academic research on trauma-informed practice and care.

FINDINGS/ IMPLICATIONS: While social workers have sound knowledge on trauma and its impact on individuals and their behaviours, the implementation of trauma-informed practice and care can often be confusing and underutilised. Additionally, the consideration of the impact on practitioners can often be overlooked, falling on the practitioner to manage themselves rather than a collaborative approach alongside the organisation they work in.


Author Biography

Charlotte Chisnell, Eastern Institute of Technology Te Pukenga

Programme Coordinator on the BSW.


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How to Cite

Dyer, R., & Chisnell, C. (2023). An inquiry into trauma-informed practice and care for social workers in care and protection roles in Aotearoa New Zealand. Aotearoa New Zealand Social Work, 35(3), 76–88.



Original Articles