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Who We Are

The National Child Traumatic Stress Network (NCTSN) was created by Congress in 2000 as part of the Children’s Health Act to raise the standard of care and increase access to services for children and families who experience or witness traumatic events. This unique network of frontline providers, family members, researchers, and national partners is committed to changing the course of children’s lives by improving their care and moving scientific gains quickly into practice across the U.S. The NCTSN is administered by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) and coordinated by the UCLA-Duke University National Center for Child Traumatic Stress (NCCTS).

The NCTSN has grown from 17 funded centers in 2001 to 199 currently funded centers and over 200 Affiliate (formerly funded) centers and individuals, working in hospitals, universities, and community-based programs in 48 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and Guam.

To accomplish the NCTSN mission, grantees and Affiliates work to:

  • Provide clinical services
  • Develop and disseminate new interventions and resource materials
  • Offer education and training programs
  • Collaborate with established systems of care
  • Engage in data collection and evaluation
  • Inform public policy and awareness efforts

The national impact of the NCTSN is well documented. In recent years, estimates from the NCTSN Collaborative Change Project (CoCap) have indicated that each quarter about 50,000 individuals – children, adolescents and their families – directly benefited from services through this Network. Since its inception, the NCTSN has trained more than two million professionals in trauma-informed interventions. Hundreds of thousands more are benefiting from the other community services, website resources, webinars, educational products, community programs, and more. Over 10,000 local and state partnerships have been established by NCTSN members in their work to integrate trauma-informed services into all child-serving systems, including child protective services, health and mental health programs, child welfare, education, residential care, juvenile justice, courts, and programs serving military and veteran families.