Ten years ago, my colleague Lenn Murphy was asked to be on a crisis counseling team to assist families in the aftermath of the World Trade Center disaster. Lenn had trained at the ToDo Institute and I had worked with him over several years at the Riverside School in Massachusetts. Lenn ultimately published an article about his experience working with children on the 9-11 crisis team.

In his article he stated, “For years the prevailing approach to trauma was to ‘talk about the incident until you are healed.’ I believe the most effective intervention is to teach people to learn from trauma experience as you would from any life experience. To constantly go over the incident is counter productive – people need tools to help them get on with their lives.”

In the past ten years we’ve seen a devastating string of disasters including earthquakes, hurricanes, cyclones, tsunamis and a European heat wave that killed nearly 40,000 people. Nearly every relief effort includes teams of menta...

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