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WAFCA-CE A Comprehensive Response to Socio-Cultural Trauma
Tuesday, May 18, 2021, 10:00 AM - 2:30 PM CST
Category: WAFCA CE Training


A Comprehensive Response to Socio-Cultural Trauma
Presented by: Patricia Parker, 
University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee;  Dawn Shelton-Williams, MSW, LCSW, Aurora Health Care

Event Description:

A trauma response can be inherited from one’s parents as well as from everyday societal factors and events.

Socio-Cultural trauma is a form of trauma that is not often talked about yet experience daily by marginalized and oppressed people. Dr. Kenneth Hardy suggests children’s response to socio-cultural trauma could be “precipitated by the biased treatment their parents, community or ethnic group have experience throughout the history of this country”. The impact toxic stress has on people living with unresolved trauma has been observed to trigger a trauma response of either fight, flight, or freeze.  In people of color (BIPOC), these responses have often been mislabeled as defiant rather than protective, oppositional rather than guarded, disinterested but more accurately assessed as emotionally numb. This workshop will present information discussing several forms of socio-cultural trauma, including race-based trauma, and offer a comprehensive trauma informed response to children and their families.

Learning Objectives

  • Participants will be given a definition of socio-cultural trauma, micro-aggressions, and toxic stress.
  • Participants will learn that racial trauma and toxic stress negatively impacts overall wellness.
  • Participants will be informed about culturally responsive strategies, assessment tools and interventions.

About the Presenters:

Dawn Shelton-Williams is the Quality Specialist at Aurora Family Service (Aurora Health Care). She is responsible for the agency’s quality program including the agency’s accreditation process with the Council on Accreditation. Dawn is also the social work navigator for the agency’s Wisconsin Well Woman Program – Social Work Navigation. Her professional experience is in the areas of mental health, health care, and child welfare. As a Licensed Clinical Social Worker for the State of Wisconsin, she is also in private practice at Sebastian Family Psychology Practice, LLC. Ms. Shelton-Williams has over 29 years of providing clinical services to children and families. Dawn is active in the community. She is President for NASW-WI’s Board and serves on the Governor’s Council on Mental Health.

Patricia Parker is currently a full-time Curriculum and Instruction Manager for the Milwaukee Child Welfare Partnership located in the Helen Bader School of Social Welfare at the University of Wisconsin - Milwaukee. Patricia received her degree in social work from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and graduate certificate in Community Mental Health from the Trinity College of Vermont. Patricia has worked as a consultant/trainer with the National

Resource Center for Family Centered Practice-University of Iowa since 1989. Ms. Parker has over thirty-eight years of experience working in the human services. She has provided in-home family therapy, individual therapy, group therapies, strength-based community development practices in Wilmington, North Carolina, Milwaukee and Madison, Wisconsin and provided consultation, technical assistance, and training services in 30 states across the country.


*These opportunities are being provided with funding support from the Great Lakes Mental Health Technology Transfer Center. For additional training and resources available through the MHTTC, visit their website

About our Offerings:

WAFCA has been approved by NBCC as an Approved Continuing Education Provider, ACEP No. 6778. Programs that do not qualify for NBCC credit are clearly identified. WAFCA is solely responsible for all aspects of the programs. Visit the WAFCA-CE registration page for more information on fees and policies. 

Wisconsin Association of Family & Children's Agencies (WAFCA)
16 N Carroll St, #750
Madison, WI 53703  (608) 257-5939 


Contact: Rachel Kruse: [email protected], 608.257.5939