Story Shifters: Co-creating New Stories about Trauma

Presented by: Barbara Ward, BA, MSW, RSW, PhD, Mental Health Lead, Waterloo Region District School Board.
This Webinar was presented and recorded on December 3, 2019.

This Webinar reviews 9 story shifters that can be used to assist those who have experienced childhood trauma to explore new alternative stories rooted in resilience, where alternate meanings and stories can be created that bring hope and forgiveness to the future. 

This Webinar presents from a perspective that is rooted in positive psychology, resilience and social construction in a manner that is easy to understand and relate to. Strategies that contribute to change are emphasized with concrete examples and stories. 

Webinar Recording


Click here for presentation slides

Click here to complete a short quiz and gain a certificate

Learning Objectives

After participating in this Webinar, participants will better be able to:

  • Understand why our current view of childhood trauma needs to be shifted from one of wounded-ness to one that is resilience-based
  • Identify nine resilience-based story shifters that can make a difference for someone who has experienced trauma
  • Explore how clinicians can use story shifters in counselling sessions
  • Recognize the power of community members, helpers and mentors in shifting trauma stories, on an individual or collective basis


Barbara Ward, BA, MSW, RSW, PhD is a leading expert in children’s mental health with 25 years’ experience in the field. Her training and knowledge of child and youth trauma encompasses family violence, abuse and neglect, complex trauma, post-traumatic stress disorder, and children’s mental health.

Barbara is currently the Mental Health Lead with the Waterloo Region District School Board, influencing the education system as it attends to student mental wellness. Barbara previously served as the Director of Services, as well as a manager and a clinician in the Child and Family Therapy Program in a large children’s mental health organization in the Waterloo Region.