The Dynamics of Resilience: Building synergies between responders, recovery agencies and communities
Monday, 28th and Tuesday, 29th of October, 2013 | Hilton on the Park, Melbourne
Registrations are now open
Resilience is the ability to recover from the losses and disruption of trauma and emergencies. A growing body of research demonstrates that resilience assists in recovery and protects from the impact of adversity. Building resistance, in both individuals and organisations, has become part of disaster planning and staff welfare programs. Various approaches to building resilience need tailored programs.
The challenge of emergencies is to provide services in a coordinated way and avoid creating “the second disaster” or the disorganisation which can undermine resilience. Response agencies, and the various levels of government and non-government agencies involved in response and recovery, may need to operate outside their normal frames to meet the demands of emergencies. There is also a dynamic to emergency management and resilience in the rapid change throughout recovery. Affected people are sensitive to confusion, duplication and gaps in services, and react badly to deficiencies in processes. A frequent problem identified is the difficulty ensuring activities do not create new problems on top of what has happened. The effective coordination of services at the interface between government, service providers and community is a major resilience factor since it determines the overall effectiveness of recovery.
This Conference addresses the central role of resilience in trauma and disaster: in preparation, planning, response and recovery. It is an opportunity for all sectors to consider what has been learned from recent events in Australia and overseas and how this can lead to better practice.
Click here to download the full Conference brochure and register today! Don’t miss out on our early bird rates.
KEY NOTE PRESENTERS
Major-General John Cantwell, AO, DSC (Retired)
John Cantwell joined the Australian Army as a private in 1974, rising through the ranks to become a General, commanding troops at almost every level in the Army. He saw combat action in the first Gulf War in 1991 and again served on operations in Iraq in 2006. In 2010 he was the commander of all Australian forces in Afghanistan and the wider Middle East area of operations, for which he was awarded the Distinguished Service Cross for leadership in action. He has twice been recognised in the Order of Australia awards, along with the United States Legion of Merit. He retired in 2012. Since then he has been a prominent advocate for the care of veterans suffering emotional trauma resulting from their military service. His book Exit Wounds, which chronicles his struggles with post traumatic stress disorder over 20 years, became a major bestseller. He is a regular commentator in national newspapers, radio and television.
Dr Rob Gordon, PhD
Rob Gordon has been working in disasters for over 25 years and has provided services in 27 large scale disasters in Australia and New Zealand as well as many smaller events. As a highly respected clinical psychologist he treats adults and children who have been involved in traumatic events and disasters. He is consultant to government and recovery agencies such as the Australian Red Cross. Rob has extensive experience in talking to affected people in community meetings during the recovery process following disasters and has a special interest in the social processes in disaster affected communities. He has developed and conducted highly successful training programs in staff support over many years.
Dr Sven Hansen, MBChB, MBA
Sven Hansen is a medical practitioner who has spent many years providing health management and leadership development for executives, professionals and organisations. Dr Hansen began his career in Sport Medicine and has since assisted organisations to develop health, resilience and leadership. He has a special interest in the personal dimensions of leadership and his work has shown that leadership demands a more sophisticated understanding and management of ourselves. As Founder of the Resilience Institute, he leads a team who design and deliver training courses to help leaders and organisations embed Resilience into their Human Capital Strategy. Sven is a well-known and popular international speaker.
W/Prof Carmen Lawrence, BPsych
Carmen Lawrence trained as a research psychologist at the University of Western Australia and lectured at a number of Australian universities. She entered WA state politics in 1986, becoming the first woman Premier and Treasurer, and at the Federal level in 1994 where she was appointed Minister for Health and Human Services and Minister for assisting the Prime Minister on the Status of Women. She was elected National President of the Labour Party in 2004, retiring in 2007. She is now Director of the Centre for the Study of Social Change in the School of Psychology at the University of Western Australia. This Centre applies research findings to devise workable public policy solutions to current and emerging problems. It brings together researchers and scholars from many disciplines to develop generic, cross-cultural understanding of social change. As well, it links academics with policy makers in
business and government.
An Analysis Of Why The Sydney Northern Beaches Branch of Surf Life Saving Peer Support (TIPS) Team Has Survived
Presented by Patricia Newton RN, GradDipCouns
The Surf Life Saving Association on the Northern Beaches of Sydney, NSW, has a long established peer support (TIPS) team. Resilience has been the key factor to the success of this program. This includes the flexibility of the peer providers, availability of the co-ordinator, consistent reflection on practice and the freedom to respond (for so many years) in a managed yet experiential learning environment. The elements of the TIPS program have withstood the test of time and for the most part remains somewhat of a thorn in the side of the organisation as a whole because it is a constant reminder that the organisation is not invincible.
A Clinical Scoping Model for Assessing Critical Incident Response in EAP
Presented by Chris Santalucia BA (Psych), GradDipVocCouns and Irene Bruman BA (Hons), MPscyh (Couns)
The authors represent PPC which is an international provider of Employee Assistance Services and which provide Critical Incident Stress Management services. Critical Incident Scoping (CIS) was introduced as the result of the need to improve initial assessment and appropriate delivery of services at a more clinical level. The CIS model was designed to provide an immediate clinical focus to all incoming CI requests and better assess the dynamics of the incident and appropriate services. The CIS model ensures that all CI requests are managed by the CIS clinician from the outset. Ongoing evaluation and feedback reinforce the importance of this approach. This presentation will be illustrated with case study scenarios.
A Resiliency Program For WA Fire and Emergency Service Workers
Presented by Petra Skeffington BA (Hons), MCouns
A program has been developed for WA Fire and Emergency Service Workers. It is known as the Mental Agility and Psychological Strength (MAPS) training program and its aim is to build resilience and prevent stress related to psychopathology for staff. The MAPS program was built from an understanding of the cognitive model of aetiology of Post-traumatic Stress Disorder in conjunction with a thorough review of the current evidence base for resilience building and prevention of psychopathology. It is a multi-faceted approach that has some applicability for most individuals and allows participants to build personal insight and to choose the best stress management for them. This presentation outlines the development and evaluation of the MAPS program.
Building Resilience in the Ambulance Service of New South Wales
Presented by Paul McFarlane RN, BTh (Hons), MHSts
The Ambulance Service of NSW is one of the largest in the world servicing over 7 million people. The organisation has adopted a strategic approach to building resilience amongst its workforce and utilises numerous programs to help build emotional capacity and ensure staff well-being. In 2009, the Healthy Workplace Strategies Unit was developed to co-ordinate and implement staff wellness and well-being policies. This paper will describe this comprehensive program and the training delivered to managers, staff and volunteers. The lessons learnt and strategies developed by the Ambulance Service of NSW are applicable to all workplaces and will be of interest to those who work in the field of trauma, mental health and employee well-being.
Keeping Crisis Intervention Teams Healthy
Presented by Heidi Faith
This paper looks at the importance of keeping crisis intervention team members healthy. It will be argued that valuing the role of each team member is essential and central to optimising results for the victims being served. The physical, emotional, spiritual and psychosocial needs of the victim will only be treated holistically and inter-dependently when members of the crisis intervention team also view each team member and their role inter-dependently. Arguments are based on data collected from bereaved mothers, in multiple countries, experiencing sudden pregnancy and infancy loss. Nevertheless, the author proposes that these findings can be applied universally, to all crisis intervention teams.
My Journey into an Emergency Management Community
Presented by Christine Ellingworth
As a Psychologist in the process of researching for the Disaster Resilience Resource Manual Australia (DRRMA) I was sponsored by my Local Melton Council to complete the Advanced Diploma in Public Safety (Emergency Management) at the Australian Emergency Management Institute (AEMI). This paper will demonstrate how my new understanding of emergency management core business has enhanced my capacity and capabilities. Community connections have changed. I now share resources with the Local Government Emergency Management team; Community Development Officers regarding safer communities; Police Youth Resource Officer; Immigration; DHS in community; Schools for conversations on adolescents, culture, trauma, immigration and resilience courses. I now experience the personal and professional with a wider emergency management lens. One example is utilising social media to coordinate emergency management from the couch!
Outreach: The Response That Seemed To Make The Most Sense
Presented by Bernie Durkin BSocWk
Following the 2009 Victorian bushfires, EACH, a social and community NGO, undertook to provide counselling and psychosocial support services to individuals and communities. We committed ourselves to an outreach model – work that has continued for more than four years. Our stipulation for those who enrolled for the work were to respond within 24 hours, to go where the people are and to stay involved for as long as the work takes. This presentation will outline some of the lessons we learned. It will look at why and how outreach worked but will also explore and the costs, limitations and lack of acceptance that sometimes came with the work.
Resilience In Child Protection Workers
Presented by Erica Russ BSocWk, GradCertASWP
Research suggests high rates of burnout and vicarious trauma in child protection workers with resultant effects including individual impacts and high staff turnover. Yet little has been done to understand resilience in staff and those workers who continue in the field, for extended periods, providing effective services. This paper discusses the findings of a qualitative longitudinal study which explored the understandings and experiences of resilience for child protection workers. In-depth interviews were conducted with staff, on two occasions, over a 12 months period. The research provides insights into how workers develop and maintain an ability to work effectively when challenged with ongoing exposure to traumatic contexts.
Resiliency: The Next Phase Of Crisis Intervention For Emergency Services
Presented by Peter Kueffer ESM, BA, DipEd, GradDipCouns
There is a need for a proactive approach to issues of stress and mental health in emergency service workers. Resilience is a factor which either reduces or prevents stress reactions. It is also a methodology for developing and enhancing personal and organisational resilience. A key factor is Resilient Leadership. A focus on resilience has the advantage of proactivity while incorporating CISM and Psychological First Aid methodologies. CISM pre-incident education, once viewed as one factor in the multicomponent CISM model, is now being seen as a method for building resilience. Given the risks to emergency responder’s mental health due to the nature of their roles, resilient leadership methodologies (and their focus on building individual and unit resilience) offer a way forward and represent the next phase of crisis intervention.
The Development Of The Yeronga Flood Recovery Centre in QLD – From Seed To Sapling
Presented by Julia McKenzie-Palmer BSc Hons (Psych)
During the devastating Brisbane floods in January 2011, a small evacuation centre was set up at a local state school by Melinda McInturff and a handful of volunteers. As homes lost power and the flood waters rose, people arrived at this centre needing showers, food and a place to sleep. Over the first few days about 200 people passed through the centre but the numbers increased as the “floodees” sought it as a mud-free place to sit and recover over a cuppa before returning to their devastated homes to clean up. The Yeronga Flood Recovery centre grew to be the biggest in Queensland. Two years on it has been renamed the Yeronga Community Centre and houses such projects as “building resilience in kids”. This presentation is a case study focussing on the development and growth of this centre. A seed planted in devastation has grown into a strong sapling.
The Role Of Resilience In Pre-Incident Education for Emergency Service Personnel
Presented by Dee Neveling PhD, MA and Gina Mammone
Members of NSW State Emergency Service receive pre-incident education and awareness training in Critical Incident Stress and its management. The perceptions of SES members about this program were studied in 2010. It was found that pre-incident education is important to workers. Social support and problem solving strategies were identified as common and valued coping methods. Participants were receptive to receiving additional information on resilience and growth in future programs. Recommendations from this study will be discussed including a paradigm shift in managing critical incident stress which entails focus on enhancing resilience and post traumatic growth.
Use Of An Animated Psycho-Education DVD To Lessen The Effects Of Trauma
Presented by Grant Broadbent-Smith BEd, BSocWk and Neville Braybrook
This paper evaluates the effectiveness of an animated psycho-educational DVD to lessen the effects of trauma in people who were recent victims of crime. The video was developed by one of the authors after noting high levels of self-doubt and feelings of abnormality in this group of people. It was found that the DVD assists victims of crime in their own recovery through normalising their experience and by offering them a range of self-care strategies including the use of existing resources and support. There is the potential for the DVD to have broad and immediate reach through web-based platforms.
Vicarious Posttraumatic Growth In Health Care Professionals
Presented by David Younger BA Hons (Psych)
The development of positive outcomes arising from indirect exposure to trauma is referred to as vicarious posttraumatic growth (VPTG). It is a relatively new and under-researched area within the psychological literature, and an adequate explanatory or theoretical framework describing the underlying mechanisms is yet to be identified. Although models which explain growth following exposure to trauma (posttraumatic growth) are well established, their applicability in situations of VPTG remains unconfirmed. Improving our understanding of the mechanisms and determinants of VPTG has important implications for those health professionals working with trauma affected populations. It is relevant to such areas as staff recruitment, the provision of organisational support and the maintenance of individual health and well-being.