Special Populations


This section of the NCTSN Learning Center brings together resources focused on specific populations, including adolescents who have experienced trauma and substance abuse, homeless youth, and refugees. The courses in this section offer interactive online training modules, video lectures, case examples, assessment tools, and expert tips.
This Adolescent Trauma and Substance Abuse (ATSA) online course was developed to provide training and materials for mental health clinicians, substance abuse treatment providers, parents, caregivers, and youth on the complex intersections between psychological trauma and co-occurring substance abuse and dependency. The course includes an interactive online module on “Understanding Traumatic Stress and Substance Abuse Among Adolescents,” a webinar and lecture presentation featuring expert faculty from the NCTSN, and a four-part Train-the-Trainer video series entitled “Trauma and Co-Occurring Disorders: Understanding and Working with Youth and Their Caregivers.”
The Hollywood Homeless Youth Partnership, a consortium of agencies affiliated with the NCTSN, has developed a series of on-line training courses designed for direct care staff working with homeless youth, including staff working in drop-in centers, emergency shelters, transitional living programs, and independent living programs. This 11-module course covers a range of topics including adolescent development, adolescent risk behaviors, LGBTQ youth, HIV testing, legal and ethical issues, resiliency, and trauma among homeless and runaway youth. The Hollywood Homeless Youth Partnership (HHYP) agencies have been actively collaborating since 1982, and HHYP was formally established in 1999. Its member agencies are among the pre-eminent experts on the issues of youth homelessness in Los Angeles, the current homeless capital of America. As service providers, HHYP works to achieve best practices in service delivery with the goal of strengthening interventions to help homeless youth exit the streets, overcoming the traumatic experiences at the core of their homelessness.

The Refugee Services Toolkit (RST) is a web-based tool designed to help service system providers understand the experience of refugee children and families, identify the needs associated with their mental health, and ensure that they are connected with the most appropriate available interventions. The mental health and general well-being of refugee children and families can be impacted by multiple factors including their experience of trauma; stressors such as resettlement, acculturation, and social isolation; and strengths they may have that could contribute to resilience. Providers can use community resources and supports to build resilience and reduce stress in refugee families.

The Road to Recovery: Supporting Children with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities Who Have Experienced Trauma Toolkit was developed by the National Center for Child Traumatic Stress (NCCTS) and the NCTSN Trauma & IDD Expert Panel, a national selection of individuals with expertise in trauma and IDD.