TBRI, Trust-Based Relational Intervention

TBRI, Trust-Based Relational Intervention is a method of caregiving that helps children that have endured trauma feel heard and understood. For the children at Grace Village, trauma is a part of their past but it doesn’t have to be a part of their future. God is a God of redemption and TBRI is a way we walk alongside those that have been hurt in the past.

The method is essentially three parts of care; connect, empower, and correct. The first step for caregivers is to connect with their child. Often this is done through play, full attention, voice tone and body language. This initial step is crucial as it disarms the child’s fear and they start to trust the caregiver. Second step is to empower the children. Too often children in trauma were never given choices, trauma happened to them without any fault of their own. When we give children choices that are appropriate it empowers them as individuals. Once the child feels connected and empowered then the caregiver has the right to correct. The third step, is correcting the poor behavior. One example from scripture is second chances. For children that have misbehaved, we give them a second chance to try it again and try a different approach.

DavidPlatt, TBRI, Trust-Based Relational Intervention

TBRI, Trust-Based Relational Intervention

Concrete examples from Grace Village:

When we connect with children we talk to them at their level. We may kneel, sit in a chair or even sit on the ground to talk to them. We value eye contact which means when a parent is talking to their child we ask for eye contact throughout the conversation.

Empowering a child is practiced in several different ways at Grace Village. One-way, influenced by the late Dr. Karyn Purvis when she visited Grace Village in August 2014. As she walked through the family homes, she noticed each bunk bed. She offered this advice that is still used today. Each child has the opportunity to pick out its bed sheets. It may be blue, yellow or have designs on it; but each child has the opportunity to choose his or her own bed sheet. This power gives them the opportunity to take ownership of their own space. Empowering children is also important that the parent encourages proper hydration and nutrition. At Grace Village we have healthy snacks available to the kids right away when they get home from school before supper. This snack, typically fresh fruit, gives them energy after their full day at school.

Correcting behavior is different for every family. For Grace Village we have not had the children since birth and so we have a “no hit policy”. This policy is in place because a spanking may be seen as given out of anger instead of love. For this reason when we have to punish the children we talk about the why. We try to correct the behavior when it occurs, and be proactive whenever needed. Every situation is an opportunity to learn and grow as an individual.

Click Here to Learn More…