Course curriculum

    1. Trauma and SU 1.pdf

    2. Trauma and SU 3.pdf

    3. Trauma and Substance Use Quiz

    4. Identifying Triggers

    5. Relapse Prevention Plan

    6. Evaluation

About this course

  • 6 lessons

Course Description

This training will benefit mental health clinicians, social workers, and anyone else who wants to learn about how trauma and substance use are correlated.  This course will first provide an overview of trauma and trauma symptoms.  Viewers will see that there are many different symptoms of trauma because trauma affects everyone differently depending on their experiences and protective factors.  Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder will also be described including symptoms and how it is diagnosed.  

After having an understanding of trauma, the training will focus on Substance use and how it correlates to trauma. The term “circular relationship” will be explained as to how it relates to trauma and substance use.  The course will also provide an overview of how trauma is a risk factor for substance use.  The benefits of both group and individual therapy when treating people who have experienced co-occurring substance use and trauma will be discussed.  The curriculum for Seeking Safety will be explained as well as the benefits of using it in a group setting.   

The last part of the training will discuss different skills that can be utilized by people who experience co-occurring substance use and trauma.  The first skill will be about identifying triggers.  A handout will be provided that can help to recognize triggers and what situations cause them.  The second skill will involve creating a relapse prevention plan.  Viewers will be walked through the different aspects of a relapse prevention plan and will be provided with knowledge on why each part is important.  

Learning Objectives: 

  • Be able to describe the correlation between Trauma symptoms, PTSD and Substance Use
  • Explain different treatment options and how the Seeking Safety curriculum is beneficial to use with individuals experiencing co-occurring substance use and trauma 
  • Summarize ways individuals can identify triggers
    • Skill #3: Identify trauma triggers and triggers for relapse
  • List healthy coping skills and describe a relapse prevention plan 
    • Skill #4: Creating a Relapse Prevention Plan


Trainer Rebecca Fornaro

Rebecca is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker with several years’ experience working with diverse populations. She has worked in several treatment facilities and has conducted individual, group and family therapy. She has experience working with people who struggle with substance use, anxiety, depression, grief, PTSD and trauma-related issues. Rebecca has specialized in trauma-informed care and believes in a strengths-based approach. She approaches every client with empathy and compassion in order to meet them where they are and empower them to make behavioral changes and heal from past trauma. Rebecca utilizes cognitive behavioral therapy, motivational interviewing and mindfulness in sessions with clients. She received a Bachelor’s degree in Social Work from Marist College and a Master’s degree in Social Work from Monmouth University. Licensed Clinical Social Worker in the States of New Jersey #44SC05923400

Certificates will be awarded after completion of the full Webinar and course evaluation.

Radiant Sunshine, #1403, is approved to offer social work continuing education by the Association of Social Work Boards (ASWB) Approved Continuing Education (ACE) program. Organizations, not individual courses, are approved as ACE providers. State and provincial regulatory boards have the final authority to determine whether an individual course may be accepted for continuing education credit. Radiant Sunshine maintains responsibility for this course. ACE provider approval period: 2/28/23 to 2/28/2026  Social workers completing this course receive 2 clinical continuing education credits.

Find out whether your state or province accepts ACE approval.

Approved Continuing Education Provider (ACEP):

Radiant Sunshine has been approved by NBCC as an Approved Continuing Education Provider, ACEP No. 7371. Programs that do not qualify for NBCC credit are clearly identified.

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