Violence Threat Risk Assessment (VTRA) Level II Training took place at the Jonas Applegarth Theatre at Samson High School on January 21 & 22, 2020. The training was hosted by Ermineskin Community Wellness & Samson Cree Nation Finance Department. This was a continuation of the VTRA Level I Training that the teams took in September last year and was conducted by North American Center for Threat Assessment and Trauma Response facilitator Pat Rivard. Several agencies from Ermineskin & Samson are completed the training for the sole purpose of conducting threat assessments for prevention and intervention of violence within the community. The information presented was very informational and will benefit the community immensely.
Some of the key topics of Violence Threat Risk Assessment (VTRA) discussed pertained to:
• VTRA is not counselling -> It is data collection
• The better the DATA, the better the ASSESSMENT, the better the INTERVENTION
• You can’t do VTRA without understanding Trauma
• VTRA is meant to be helpful, NOT hurtful
• Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACE) and their connection to developing diseases because of traumatic stress
• “Attention seeking” is CONNECTION seeking
• The more OPEN our communities are, the HEALTHIER the community will be.
• Rationalize -> Rational + Lies (what are the rational lies people are telling themselves?)
• The opposite of ADDICTION, is CONNECTION
Instructor Pat Rivard was an amazing mentor in this training. We were very blessed to have had him train our community members in VTRA Training. “Grounded in his professional experiences as a social worker, which included a 6 year career in Child Welfare and subsequently a two year career as a family counsellor, provides an in-depth understanding of the foundational practices of VTRA. Recently, Pat transitioned from an 18 year career in Education where he served students and communities as a teacher, Principal and 9 years in senior leadership in two school divisions in Alberta. Pat received an award from NACTATR for his outstanding leadership in the advancement of VTRA practice demonstrating a tireless commitment towards providing safe and caring environments for students and community. Pat is in his third year of being a national trainer for NACTATR.” After the conclusion of the training, Pat was gifted with a Ribbon Shirt to show our appreciation for sharing his knowledge with us.
Article & Photos by Janine Wildcat