kidsLINK’s approach captures attention of future professionals - MSW student reflects on internship at Front Door.
By: Kristian Partington
The idea of trauma-informed practice, and the wellness, resilience and healing from trauma approach employed by kidsLINK was one of the major factors that sold Leah Anderson on the idea of completing her internship with the organization.
The University of Toronto student is completing her masters of social work degree and says she believes the kidsLINK model is one she can fully support, no matter where her career path might lead.
“Within the agency, I appreciate the holistic approach in that we look at the whole family instead of just the identified child, which I think is very important, and sometimes I think that importance gets overlooked,” Leah says. “I was hoping that I would be able to work with some forms of trauma, that’s kind of where I’d like my career to go,” she says.
Children and families living with oppositional defiance disorder or behavioural issues that may stem from adverse childhood experiences or suffered trauma are too often overlooked in public systems, Leah says. “I don’t think the mental health system should be one of them.” These are the children and families she holds a personal commitment to helping.
“I just want to be part of that process; a person who can see the child behind all the symptoms.” She brings empathy to the profession and knows there is strength and resilience among the children she’s already connected with, and is eager to dive deeper into the work.
Leah began the placement in September and will continue working with kidsLINK/Lutherwood’s Front Door Access to Child and Youth Services until April, which will fulfill the requirements of her degree. She says she appreciates the support she’s received from the team she works with so far, and is thankful she’s already had the opportunity to work directly with several children and families.
“Absolutely, it’s been a wonderful experience and everyone has been very supportive,” Leah says.
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