Children who are exposed to family violence are more vulnerable than their peers to social, emotional, physiological and cognitive development problems that can have long-term effects on their family, friends and community. Sonshine Children’s Centre programming is anchored in well-tested theoretical frameworks and service principles, that ensure consistent, informed and individualized services that build on child development theories and understanding of child behaviour. The Centre’s interventions and services help address multiple issues such as the history of trauma, abuse or neglect, behavioural problems, and attachment disorders as well as support and encourage normal child development in normally developing children.
The Centre uses ARC framework which identifies three core domains that are frequently impacted among traumatized children and youth, including attachment, regulation and competency, which are relevant to future resiliency. The Centre also uses the
Neurosequential Model of Therapeutics (NMT) to guide its service planning with children who have been exposed to significant trauma. NMT is an approach that integrates core principles of neurodevelopment and traumatology to inform work with children, families and the communities in which they live.
The Children’s Centre takes a learning through play approach, organizing the play environment in a way that provides a choice of play activities that meet the developmental needs of each child in the group. The learning through play approach expands, for traumatized children, into Theraplay which is a child and family therapy for enhancing and building attachment, self-esteem, trust in others, and joyful engagement.