Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) and Trauma

Our work to prevent and reduce the negative impact of childhood adversity and trauma.

Trauma-informed workforce and services

Scotland has paved the way in creating a vision of a trauma-informed workforce and services, ensuring that services and care are delivered in ways that:

  • are informed by people with lived experience
  • recognises the importance of wellbeing in the workforce
  • recognises where people are affected by trauma and adversity
  • responds in ways that prevent further harm
  • supports recovery
  • can address inequalities and improve life chances

Over 70 organisations from all sectors of the workforce across Scotland have now signed the leadership pledge of support for trauma-informed practice. 

National Trauma Transformation Programme

The National Trauma Transformation Programme (formerly known as the National Trauma Training Programme) is a major and long-term change programme, supported by the Scottish Government and COSLA, which aims to support this ambition.

The National Trauma Transformation Programme is based on the Knowledge and Skills Framework for Psychological Trauma, developed by NHS Education for Scotland (NES). This framework sets out the knowledge and skills needed by everyone in the Scottish workforce to be able to recognise where an individual may be affected by trauma and to adapt their practice accordingly in order to minimise distress and support recovery through a safe and compassionate response.

Since 2018, the Scottish Government has invested over £9.6 million in the NTTP. This includes £1.6 million each year shared equally across all 32 local authorities in 2021-2022, 2022-2023 and 2023-2024 to work with health boards and community planning partners to further progress trauma-informed systems, organisations and workforces.

The NTTP provides freely available, evidence-based trauma training resources, including a trauma-informed leaders component. Support for training and implementation, across all sectors of the workforce, is provided by a team of Transforming Psychological Trauma Implementation Co-Ordinators (TPTICs) based in health boards across Scotland. 

In 2021, a network of ‘Trauma Champions’ was also established, this includes senior leaders from across local authorities, health boards and key community planning partners who work collaboratively to influence change across local areas. The Trauma Champions network is supported by the Improvement Service. Local Lead Officers for Trauma are in post across many local authority areas and support the coordination and implementation of a trauma-informed approach across local authorities, working in partnership with key community planning partners.

A Roadmap for Creating Trauma-Informed and Responsive Change: Guidance for Organisations, Systems and Workforces in Scotland was published in November 2023. This resource is designed to help services and organisations identify and reflect on progress, strengths and opportunities for embedding a trauma-informed and trauma-responsive approach across policy and practice.



Trauma, Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) and Resilience Unit
Mental Health Directorate
Scottish Government
3ER - St. Andrew's House
Regent Road

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