The Simple Guide to Collective Trauma: What it is, How it Affects Us and How to Help


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  • What is collective trauma?
  • How can it impact children and communities?
  • What can we do about it?

Providing accessible answers to these complex questions and more, this guide explores the key characteristics of collective trauma and provides practical advice on how to help children, young people and communities to heal.

Collective trauma affects communities, families and individuals. This book highlights its impacts and with examples such as grief and loss, outlines how it can manifest. With guidance on building individual, communal and cultural resilience, this book is an invaluable resource to better understand and support children and young people dealing with collective trauma.


  • Chapter 1: An Introduction to Collective Trauma
  • Chapter 2: The Power of Relationships.
  • Chapter 3: The Centrality of Safety.
  • Chapter 4: The Impact of Collective Trauma on Normal Life
  • Chapter 5 Parenting and Supporting the Parents and Carers
  • Chapter 6: Big Strong Emotions
  • Chapter 7: Creative Ideas and Activities to Help
  • Chapter 8: Grief, Loss and Bereavement
  • Chapter 9: Trauma Informed Culture
  • Chapter 10: Building for the future, Resilience and Post Traumatic Growth

Author Bio:

Betsy de Thierry is a mum of four brilliant sons, a practising psychotherapist and a qualified primary school teacher. With over 20 years of experience and knowledge within the field, she is a trainer in trauma recovery and the founder of the Trauma Recovery Centre, a charity specialising in recovery from complex trauma. She is also the CEO of BdT Ltd ( Trauma Training, Consultancy and Leadership, which supports professionals who work with traumatised children and families in the UK.


“Betsy de Thierry’s Simple Guides never fail to deliver common sense, easy to follow explanations for understanding and helping children and adults who are struggling due to trauma. Reading them for the first time, as a foster carer and parent support worker, I felt a sense of hope and empowerment to tackle scary issues with confidence. This new book in the collection, The Simple Guide to Collective Trauma, doesn’t disappoint. With a great balance of information from the field of psychotherapy, Betsy’s own experience as a therapist and straightforward, easy to access guides to working with those who have experienced collective trauma, this book is simply brilliant. The message of hope that is heard throughout the book sets it apart as a must read for everyone who is supporting those effected by Collective Trauma or who have experienced it themselves” – Alison Whealy, Foster Parent, Parent Support Worker, and Teacher

“This timely text will serve as an accessible and useful resource for busy professionals and parents/carers alike. As with the other texts in this series, Betsy again both demystifies and illuminates complex issues while also equipping the reader with practical skills” – Bec Mason, Children and Families Practice Trainer (Portsmouth Safeguarding Children Partnership)