Children, Bereavement and Trauma: Nurturing Resilience constitutes a valuable resource, particularly for practitioners, which may be applied toward understanding and alleviating children's grief. Its focus on resilience reflects an important trend in positive psychology, characterised by a de-emphasis on pathology in favour of the scientific pursuit of optimum human functioning. Barnard, Morland, and Nagy's work suggests the need for more effective evaluative methods for intervention programs, as well as further research into the roles of culture and resilience in children's bereavement care. Overall, the book represents an impressive effort, offering readers welcome insight into the complex issues surrounding childhood grief and mourning'.
There are few available resources for child survivors of trauma and bereavement. However, this book counts among the best of them, picking up as it does on the importance of several critical elements that might often be overlooked by traditional, medical-model interventions. Overall, this book is written in a very accessible style, with solid theoretical and experiential underpinnings for its rationale. Its major strength, however, is the way in which it gives clear suggestions for how these lessons may be applied in the practice of working with bereaved and traumatised children
Theory and research are balanced with practical, child-friendly advice for working with bereaved children. The problems of evaluating this sort of work are discussed. The appendices list useful organisations, web-sites and reading lists. This is an easy-to-read, useful book showing much evidence of meaningful work with bereaved children. Well worth reading.
Victim Support Magazine
Children, Bereavement and Trauma: Nurturing Resilience by Paul Barnard, Ian Morland and Julie Nagy argues that children's natural resilience is fundamental to their ability to cope with trauma. Derived from the author's experience of working with bereaved children after the Hillsborough disaster, the book advocates a model of practice which is based on their findings: the importance of listening to children and listening uncritically; the importance of peer group and family support; and the value of paying attention to children's needs, rather than those of adults. The book promotes the idea of healthy coping and explores ways in which children and their families can be helped to do this. Children explain "what helped me" and recommendations for practice guidelines are supplemented by extensive lists of resources and support networks. The model can be applied to children who have experienced varying degrees of trauma, from bereavement to bullying or terminal illness.