After NTI Training – Tool Tip #3
This is the third “Tool Tip” in a three-part series of Transfer of Learning “Tips and Tools” to use BEFORE, DURING and AFTER you and/or your team completes NTI.
A. After Completion of Training:
Provide opportunities for organizational reflection and self-monitoring.
Supervisors/Managers can review what is being done organizationally to support practice. For example, examine the following:
1. Discuss how moves in care are being handled.
2. How are decisions made to prevent moves when a child is in crisis?
3. What are the considerations for keeping siblings together?
4. What changes need to be made in the intake/assessment process to address adoption or family separation experiences?
Department of Mental Health Director shares:
“NTI Training has been very useful and was what we needed because we are the largest provider of mental health services in our state. We’re in rural areas and, sometimes we’re the only provider of mental health services. NTI is extremely valuable in giving staff informed evidence-based practical info when they work on care pathways involving children and families that we serve. I always tell them I don’t want them operating from the gut and am so glad they have solid information to guide them.”
B. Help staff develop job aids and other reference materials
Using downloadable handouts and other reference tools in the training, create/tailor those tools for user-friendly job aids.
Here are some examples:
Child Welfare Training
- Create a Lifebook template, including important people, places and significant events in the child’s life.
- Develop a referral list of adoption competent professionals in your area. Post to your website and have provide as a handout. Check out the National Directory of NTI trained professionals: https://adoptionsupport.org/nti/trained-professionals/
- Learn more about Trust Based Relational Intervention (TBRI), an evidence-based intervention reviewed in Module 4. TBRI stresses the importance of the parents as healing agents and seeks to facilitate developmental catch-up in key areas of impact. Visit https://child.tcu.edu for resources and training information. Consider purchasing the Trust-Based Parenting DVD set for use with families. It is also available in Spanish. You can order from this website: http://child.tcu.edu/store/healing-families-dvds/trust-based-parenting/.
Medical Social Workers share:
“NTI was so useful and helped me feel empowered to better advocate and be an investigator in my role as a social worker in the Emergency Dept. at a children’s hospital. It also helps me better communicate and work alongside the DHR/child welfare workers that I’m constantly speaking with and making reports to. The training educated me on things that the medical providers often overlook and allows me an opportunity to step in and educate them on social and psychological needs and concerns.”
Mental Health Training
- Discuss with a colleague, friend or in clinical supervision, your own socialization experiences related to race, ethnicity, and other categories, such as gender, sexual orientation or religion. Consider these questions:
- – What stereotypical messages did you receive from your parents, friends, and community?
- – Are there types of individuals or families for whom you need to expand your understanding, comfort, or acceptance?
- – Consider how your own biases might impact your work with children and families who may challenge your beliefs and/or assumptions.
- Print and complete the Professional Quality of Life Scale (ProQOL) which assesses needs on 3 factors – compassion satisfaction, burnout, and Secondary Traumatic Stress (STS). Go to the link below, print, and complete the ProQOL. The scoring is at the bottom: tendacademy.ca/proqol-self-test-v/
Mental Health Counselor shares:
“Prior to completing the NTI training, I was not very familiar with the adoption and foster care process. As I was going through the training, I learned a great deal about the adoption process, foster care, and the trauma experienced by the children in the foster care and adoption process. I, now, immediately consider the trauma aspect of children who have been placed in foster care. Even if they are placed with kin.”
Family Therapist shares:
“I completed the NTI Mental Health training as part of my new employee training for my new role as a family therapist. As an adoptive parent myself who struggled to find professionals that understood the challenges my family faced, I was glad to see such a comprehensive overview knowing that it would help other families find adoption-competent therapists. As a new mental health professional, I appreciated the training because it has given me tools to use in my work with adoption and guardianship families. I highly recommend this for all mental health professionals. Adoption touches so many people, and this will be helpful even if you are not in an adoption-focused practice.
C. Provide tools to help supervisors coach, evaluate and support NTI training:
- NTI Supervisor Coaching and Activity Guide: Supporting Skills and Competencies for Day-to-Day Practice provides tools and guidance for helping supervisors coach and support training.
- NTI Transfer of Learning Guide incorporates a plan for transfer of learning with concrete TOL tools and examples for use in real life situations and everyday practice.
- Continue to use the tools and recommendations provided in Tool Tip #2 DURING NTI Training.
D. Ask impactful and stimulating questions to cue engagement with staff around strategies/tools/resources in each NTI Training:
– What does this remind you of?
– Have you done anything similar before?
– Do you think this will work here?
Develop Your Transfer of Learning Strategy: Transfer of Learning increases retention and utilization of new knowledge and skills. Training transfer is more likely to happen when training plus reinforcement is provided. Successful implementation of evidence into practice requires strategizing at multiple levels including departmentally, organizationally, and system wide.
Facilitate Conversations by Reaching Out: Once integrated within your Child Welfare system or organization, consider reaching out to your Mental Health partners to share your experience with TOL. Or, vice versa: Mental Health organizations, consider reaching out to your Child Welfare partners. This is a key opportunity to facilitate conversations that promote a common language between systems that is thoughtful and more intentional before going back to old habits in work and communication.
Plan to Make a Difference: This series of TOL Tips and Tools BEFORE, DURING, and AFTER NTI training serves as a “jumpstart” for critical knowledge and skills application. Together we can make a difference, advancing practice for permanency and well-being!