National Clearinghouse on Homeless Youth and Families

Transforming Staff through Clinical Supervision

Pfeifer, D.
Year Published: 2011
Journal Article
Reclaiming Children & Youth
Reclaiming Children & Youth, 20(2):29-33, Summer 2011
Pressley Ridge White Oak Residential Facility, Walker, West Virginia

This author says that the limits on how much young people can grow are often set by the abilities of the staff who serve them. Through the process described here - clinical supervision - he says staff can be empowered to reach higher levels of professional competence. Those who work directly with challenging youth are the primary agents of change. Thus, it is necessary to equip them with the skills to make the greatest therapeutic impact possible. At Pressley-Ridge, clinical supervision is driven from a model that has Re-Education as its foundation and employs Response Ability Pathways and Life Space Crisis Intervention as methods of effective treatment for the youth. In this article, the author describes the use of clinical supervision at Pressley-Ridge to better serve troubled youth. He discusses the role of clinical supervision in helping staff understand of the impact of trauma, the importance of mentorship and supervision, pitfalls and biases in clinical supervision, teachable moments in clinical supervision, using the circle of courage in clinical supervision, and strategies to facilitate clinical supervision.

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