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> Events > All Events > NSW Branch - Working Therapeutically with Complex Trauma Clients (level 2) - a three-phased approach - 11 & 12 Sep 2019

NSW Branch - Working Therapeutically with Complex Trauma Clients (level 2) - a three-phased approach - 11 & 12 Sep 2019

Event Details
Date: Wednesday 11 and Thursday 12 September 2019
Time: 8.45am to 4.30pm
Venue: NSW Teachers Federation Conference Centre, 23-33 Mary Street, Surry Hills
State: NSW
CPD hrs: 15

Refer to listing

Organiser: AASW NSW
Further information

02 9615 4005

  • Event date has passed
  • Registrations are closed

15 CPD hours

*Can count towards AASW Mental Health Accreditation CPD requirements*

Interactive Workshop

This training is designed for practitioners who work in a counselling and/or therapeutic relationship with complex trauma clients, and utilise clinical assessment, case formulation and treatment/care planning in their daily practice. This two-day interactive professional development training presents the three-phased approach for working ‘bottom up and top down’ with clients who have complex trauma histories. Informed by current research, it assumes foundational knowledge around complex trauma, trauma-informed practice, attachment theory and affective neuroscience, and builds on it.

Day 1 presents strategies for Phase 1 work; Safety and Stabilisation and introduces Phase 2; Trauma Processing. It focuses on whole of body i.e. somatic, emotional and cognitive approaches to assessment resource building and trauma processing. Day 2 workshops strategies for tracked, paced and titrated phase 2 work, informed by an understanding of traumatic memory and explores Phase 3; Integration, building your skills to better support your clients to integrate their trauma into their ‘life story’, engage actively in their daily life and strengthen their sense of self.

The training promotes the critical importance of phase 1 work - attending to safety and self-regulation at all times - and the centrality of a healthy therapeutic alliance.

Learning Outcomes Include

  • Delineate the three phases of safe trauma treatment establishing the critical importance of phase 1, ‘setting the scene’ and conducting phase 1 assessment
  • Foster techniques and strategies to build and restore resources across 7 domains of internal and external safety
  • Apply an understanding of attachment dynamics to the importance of attuning to attachment at all times, including working with dissociation
  • Acquire knowledge and skills around core components of phase 2 trauma work including working with non-verbal cues and the body
  • Apply an understanding of traumatic memory and working within the window of tolerance for safe trauma processing
  • Workshop strategies for working with transference/countertransference, enactments and ‘difficult behaviours’
  • Demonstrate knowledge & understanding of the core components of integration including mentalising, meaning making & the ability to experience pleasure


Merle is a respected consultant, trainer, supervisor and psychotherapist with experience in service delivery, management, board and volunteer roles. She previously managed Blue Knot Foundation’s trauma counselling team and national Helpline.

Merle provides trauma-informed training and consulting in diverse settings, such as organisations implementing redress in response to institutional abuse, Aboriginal services, judicial and legal organisations, health and community services, and government agencies. She has a particular interest in supporting staff working with trauma survivors and in advocacy roles to sustain their wellbeing. Through her private practice she supports adult survivors of interpersonal, institutional and political violence with counselling and therapeutic groupwork.

Her respectful strengths-based approach is informed by social justice principles, a blend of therapeutic modalities and cultural guidance from Aboriginal mentors. She holds clinical membership with PACFA.


NSW Teachers Federation
23-33 Mary Street
Surry Hills NSW

A light lunch, morning and afternoon tea will be provided. Please inform AASW NSW of any dietary requirements at the time of registration.


Standard Fee

Early Bird (ends COB 2/08/2019)

AASW Members: $460 $400
AASW Student Members: $300 $270
Non-members: $540 $440

Registrations close at 12pm on Monday 9th September.

AASW - Australian Association of Social Workers