Child Abuse Counseling Program

Child abuse emerges within the context of a family; therefore, it must be treated within that family setting, particularly if family reunification is planned.

Abuse impacts all family members, not just the child targeted for abuse; individual and collective needs must be considered while working with the family.

The following procedures are followed:

  • Assessing Family Vulnerabilities
  • Using Family Strengths
  • Assessment with a Focus on Safety
  • Setting a context for change and decreasing resistance

Summary of Abuse-Specific Work:

Treatment plans are designed to consider individual and collective needs. Formats are designed to facilitate participation. Steps in treatment plan are prioritized to consider children’s safety/needs first.

Behavior-directed work:

  • Safety as priority
  • Symptom—directed work
  • Contracting

Attitude-directed work:

  • Social issues
  • Cultural issues
  • Religious issues


System-directed work

  • Communication (Verbalization vs. Acting Out)
  • Need expression and reaching-out
  • Realign family hierarchy/structure