Certificate or Diploma in Trauma Therapy

This course helps therapists to work effectively with trauma clients, by providing a blend of psycho-education and skills.

If you would like to become more confident and better equipped to identify and resolve trauma, this course will give you a systematic approach using the best techniques for trauma.

Would you like to fill your trauma treatment toolkit by training with us?

This course is designed to equip qualified mental health professionals (counsellors, psychotherapists, psychologists) with the understanding and skills to work therapeutically and ethically in addressing clients’ trauma and dissociation. Other related professionals such as case managers, keyworkers or service managers are welcome to apply.

The Grove believes that it’s increasingly relevant for therapists to be trauma-trained, so they can attend to clients who are suffering from the effects of traumatic experiences from their past. 

Psychological trauma is identifiable and treatable, to reduce client suffering and restore fulfilment in life. This training provides a knowledge base and a valuable toolkit of materials for working with trauma clients by using cognitive and body-based techniques for symptom reduction, founded on psychoeducation. Participants in the 14-day course will receive training in assessment and formulation of trauma client presentations, be trained in Trauma-Focused CBT (CPT) and will also be trained in EFT to Level 1 and Level 2 (Emotional Freedom Technique, or “tapping”), all included in this course.

This 14-day training is held at weekends, usually 1 weekend per month between February to July 2022. There are two versions of the course: Certificate or Diploma.

Certificate: attendance on 14-day course with some additional reading to prepare for each of the 7 weekends; taught at an equivalent to Level 6.

Diploma: same attendance and reading for the Certificate, plus 3 additional written assignments; taught at an equivalent to Level 7.

This course is designed for qualified therapists who are already well-established in their practice. The starting point of the course requires that clinicians have competence in core therapeutic and relational skills. All participants must have qualified as a counsellor, psychotherapist, clinical psychologist, psychiatrist, or in a related professional field such as social work or education. This assumes an understanding of the basic tenets of establishing safety and containment in therapy in order to provide a secure base for working with psychological trauma.

Although the qualification does not hold an official Ofqual-regulated status, we would say that it is taught at the equivalent of Level 6 (Certificate) or Level 7 (Diploma): as a post-qualification training with the requirement to evaluate theoretical concepts and implementation in practice with a significant level of reflective self-assessment.

Please see the feedback from previous students on this course, in the testimonials at the bottom of this page.

The Grove Practice is accredited by NCP (National Council for Psychotherapists) as a CPD training centre. As such, all The Grove’s courses are awarded NCP accreditation for CPD (Continuous Professional Development). This accreditation provides reassurance regarding high standards of teaching and course content. The NCP is one of the longest established membership organisations for this profession, formed in 1971 following the “Foster Report” on the statutory registration of psychotherapists, with a national and international network of therapists.

The Grove’s courses have been successfully recognised as CPD for members of the following membership bodies: BACP, UKCP, COSRT, NCP, NCS, AHPP, BPS, among others. Organisations such as universities, colleges, the NHS, Relate, MIND, and Place2B have also supported their therapists in taking training with The Grove. This is a mark of unofficial validation of our courses as worthy of being listed on the CPD logs for these organisations and therapists.

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Key Information

Certificate or Diploma in Trauma Therapy

The course will be led by two directors of The Grove, Sarah Paton Briggs and Elliot Davis, supported by The Grove’s medical director, Dr James Kustow. They bring their experience and studies regarding therapy for trauma and dissociation. The faculty will include other tutors who have contributed to the world of psychotraumatology, with psychiatrists including Dr Walter Busuttil, Dr James Kustow, and other practitioners with specialist skills such as Phil Mollon and Ashley Meyer. Importantly, the voice of the survivor will also be heard: Matt Carey will share his perspective on how therapy helped him address the traumatic impact of the childhood sexual abuse (CSA) he endured. Other trauma survivors may also speak about their experiences and how trauma therapy helped.

Fees for 2022: this course can be taken at different levels of participation: Certificate or Diploma.

Certificate in Trauma Therapy: this is CPD attendance only as experiential learning with some self-study of the course materials.

Diploma in Trauma Therapy: attendance and self-study as for the Certificate, with the addition if 3 written assignments (an essay, a case study, a client-friendly information leaflet). 

After paying an initial deposit of £300, the remaining fee can be paid in full or by instalments. Usually the total fee is payable by 6 weeks before the final weekend of the training course. Please contact us to discuss a payment plan. The Grove is also happy to invoice all or part of the fee to an employer or organisation which is providing funding. Contact us to discuss the fee arrangements you would like to implement.

14-day Certificate in Trauma Therapy: £2,500 + VAT = £3,000. The fee includes attendance and materials including resources forming the trauma treatment toolkit for the 14-day CPD programme, which includes the 4 days of EFT training and 1-day training in TF-CBT.  

14-day Diploma in Trauma Therapy: attendance on the 14-day CPD programme plus submission of a leaflet and two written assignments (essay and case study) for award of the Diploma rather than the Certificate: £3,000 + VAT = £3,600. The fee includes attendance and materials including resources forming the trauma treatment toolkit for the 14-day CPD programme, which includes the 4 days of EFT training and 1-day training in TF-CBT.  

We are now inviting applications for the 2022 intake.

CPD certificates
Each level of participation will attract a CPD certificate of attendance from The Grove Practice, as appropriate whether for the 14-day Certificate, 14-day Diploma, or 1-day TF-CBT (CPT) respectively.The Grove’s Diploma in Trauma Therapy will be awarded after attendance on the 13-day Certificate course, plus the satisfactory completion of the written assignments.

See the tabs below for full details of the course description, syllabus, assessment criteria, and tutor faculty.
For any training days held at the venue: tea, coffee, water are provided at the venue each day. Lunch is not included in the course fee. Shops and cafes are nearby.


This intake is now underway.

We are accepting applications for the 2022 intake.

The 13-day course for the Certificate or Diploma is taught over 6 weekends on the following Saturday and Sunday dates in 2021:

6 & 7 February
13 & 14 March
10 & 11 April
15 & 16 May
5 June (additional day)
19 & 20 June
10 & 11 July

Times each day: 
10am – 4:30pm, apart from the EFT days which are
the programme dates in June at 9:30am – 5:30pm.


The 14-day course will run over 7 weekends on the following dates in 2022, held on Zoom:

12 & 13 February
12 & 13 March
9 & 10 April
30 April & 1 May
21 & 22 May
25 & 26 June
9 & 10 July

All dates are to be attended for either the Certificate or Diploma route.

Times each day: 
10am – 4:30pm, apart from the EFT days in May (21 & 22) and June (25 & 26) which run from 10:00am – 5:00pm.

Please contact us to register your interest or enrol.


Further Information


The course is taught at a level suitable for qualified professionals who are already established in their own mode of practice. Participants will be expected to:

  • Relate the course material to their own case material (anonymously but contextually).
  • Analyse the concepts being taught and critically reflect on how to use the learning in their own work context.
  • Discuss the material during the time on taught course days spent in the full group, and participate in skills practice exercises in smaller groups.
  • (For the Diploma version) write essays at graduate level, incorporating explanation of theoretical concepts, their own evaluation of the material, plus a case study description of how this learning has been used in their own clinical practice.

Course ethos

The course consists of theoretical, experiential and supervisory components. The theoretical input encourages critical engagement with the theory and practice of trauma therapy. Assessment is ongoing and aims to ensure that students are able to work with the dynamics and processes of traumatologie; that there is congruence between the student’s theoretical knowledge and their competence in practising trauma therapy. Teaching emphasises the multi-layered, multi-faceted processes of trauma therapy, including the use of one’s own process (while avoiding vicarious trauma).

The course culture is explicitly “high support” and “high challenge”.

The integrative stance of the course is in recognition that there will differences in training background or theoretical approach between participants. We appreciate the diversity of training modalities and approaches that participants bring to the course. Onto that foundation we offer the opportunity to build a cohesive way of working as a trauma therapist.

The course philosophy aims to establish a learning community in which a working alliance is established which encourages participants to take responsibility for their own learning and to support the learning of other course members.

Theory ✓        Experiential components ✓         Skills practice ✓       Applying theory and skills in practice ✓

This training will:

  • Give an overview of theory relating to therapy for psychological trauma and PTSD,
  • Offer a systematic method for assessing and implementing trauma therapy,
  • Equip participants with practical therapy skills,
  • Provide a method for undertaking thorough assessment for trauma clients and develop a tailored treatment plan,
  • Train attendees in evidence-based trauma therapy, along with other mindfulness and body-based-awareness approaches.

The full 12-day CPD programme covers the following content. The shorter CPD options cover only the topic area delivered on those days.

This syllabus will cover:

  • Definition of trauma, PTSD, Complex PTSD, using assessment methods and diagnostic criteria
  • An understanding of evidence-based treatment protocols, with training in Trauma-Focused CBT
  • Methodical focus on client priorities and formulating a relational treatment approach which follows the industry standard tri-phasic model
  • A range of techniques for psycho-education and stabilisation of trauma symptoms, including emotional regulation and mind-body awareness
  • Training in EFT (Emotional Freedom Technique, also known as “tapping”)
  • An understanding of evidence-based treatment protocols, with training in Trauma-Focused CBT
  • Practical ways of addressing intrusive imagery: flashbacks, nightmares, recurring memories.
  • Outline overview of other treatment protocols such as EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitisation Reprocessing), exposure techniques, adjunctive or complementary therapies.
  • Managing the client’s treatment and recovery journey, common difficulties such as dissociation or crisis moments).
  • Working with specific client groups: child sexual abuse, war zones or combat veterans, domestic violence, disasters or accidents.
  • Putting it all together: documentation, multi-disciplinary working with other medical or mental health professionals, insurance or legal cases.

This course can be taken at different levels of participation.

  • 12-day CPD Certificate in Trauma Therapy: this option is for attendance only as experiential learning.
  • 12-day Diploma in Trauma Therapy: attendance at all of the 12-day programme dates plus satisfactory completion of written assignments. Assessed written assignment products to be submitted by the student comprise: psycho-education leaflet for use by clients; 3,000 word essay defining trauma, dissociation and co-morbidities; 3,000 word trauma therapy case study. Guidelines for the essay and case study will be written in the course handbook. Briefings will also be given verbally during the course. The purpose of the essay is to ensure that participants have understood the spectrum of trauma characteristics from mild to severe, including diagnostic definitions of PTSD and Complex PTSD – along with recognising symptoms and how to treat them. The case study will be an opportunity to show how a systematic phase-based treatment plan has been implemented.

Each level of participation will attract a CPD certificate of attendance from The Grove Practice, in addition to the course materials distributed during the programme. The certification will state either “Certificate in Trauma Therapy” or “Diploma in Trauma Therapy” according to the programme for which the student enrolled.
There will also be continuous assessment by the tutors of the student’s presence in the student group and the ability to integrate the taught material.

Additionally, a minimum of 80% attendance (10 of the total 12 days) is required to be awarded the Certificate or Diploma course title.
If less than 10 days of the Certificate course are attended, the CPD attendance will list the dates which were attended.
If less than 10 days of the Diploma course are attended, the participant will need to agree a suitable substitute for the days which were missed. This may comprise a book review, a written piece, or a tutorial (at additional cost).

Professional standards

The Grove Practice is a long-established counselling and psychotherapy practice based in central London, with a team of respected and accredited therapists. The Grove has developed a number of high quality professional training courses, including this supervision training. Indeed, the growing demand for the application of psychological models in organisational settings led to the additional establishment of The Grove’s training programmes, coaching team and organisational consultancy.

The faculty for each course is drawn from the following tutors. The course will be jointly led by Sarah Paton Briggs and Elliot Davis, supported by additional facilitators who will be contributing their specialist areas of expertise.

Sarah Paton Briggs brings her experience of working therapeutically with survivors of sexual abuse and rape, along with a wealth of knowledge regarding trauma therapy for military veterans and first responders.

Sarah has provided therapy for veterans funded by Walking With The Wounded and Help 4 Heroes. She has also given clinical assessment support for The Dare To Live Trust’s equine-facilitated programmes for veterans. Her clients have comprised serving members of the armed forces or emergency first-responders or statutory services. Sarah has undertaken therapy programmes either privately-funded or through Employee Assistance Programmes including private health insurance schemes for employees of the Metropolitan Police Service, Wiltshire Fire Service, Wiltshire Police, Gloucestershire Police, Wiltshire Council.

As part of The Grove’s team, Sarah co-wrote a successful proposal funded by the building’s insurer, for a psychological trauma therapy service to support a group of those who were affected by the Grenfell Tower fire in 2017. Sarah was one of the project directors who set up a multi-lingual, multi-disciplinary, multi-site trauma therapy service (which is still in operation). 

Sarah is a director of The Grove Practice, where she has held a management role for over 10 years. She is a supervisor accredited by BACP and by COSRT.  As an accredited psychotherapist, psychosexual & relationship therapist, drug & alcohol counsellor, Sarah has a wealth of experience working with adult clients, either as individuals or couples – where traumatic experiences often have a bearing on current client presentations. Working in a trauma-informed way, she brings an engaging and relational approach to her client work. 

Trauma is a significant area of her practice. Sarah has worked with many survivors of childhood sexual abuse and rape, supporting them in making sense of what has happened and encouraging them to process what has happened so that they can reconstruct more confidence and purpose in life.

Sarah’s professional trauma credentials include:
Certified Clinical Trauma Professional awarded by the International Association of Trauma Professionals.
Member of the UK Psychological Trauma Society (UKPTS)
Member of the European Society for Traumatic Stress Studies (ESTSS)
Member of the International Society for Traumatic Stress Studies
EMDR Level 1, 2 & 3 (Eye Movement Desensitization Reprocessing)
EFT Level 1 & 2 (training attended)
Matrix Reimprinting (training attended)

She has undertaken CPD training with internationally-acclaimed teachers in the world of psycho-traumatology:

  • Dr Daniel Siegel
  • Babette Rothschild
  • Bessel van der Kolk MD
  • Dr Janina Fisher
  • Professor Berthold Gersons
  • Kathy Steele 

During 2019 she will complete training in EFT (Emotional Freedom Technique) and Matrix Reimprinting.
In line with best practice guidelines for psycho-traumatology, Sarah has trained in a range of approaches to treating trauma, including the evidence-based protocol of CPT (Cognitive Processing Therapy) which falls under the NICE guidelines for Trauma-Focused CBT (Cognitive Behavioural Therapy). Other protocols include EMDR (Levels 1 and 2), as well as BEPP (Brief Eclectic Psychotherapy for PTSD). She has received training in assessing and diagnostics for trauma, PTSD, and Complex PTSD. Importantly for symptomatic relief as a first stage in trauma treatment, Sarah is trained in a range of approaches for emotional regulation and stabilisation of symptoms such as flashbacks or panic attacks, including STAIR (Skills Training in Affect and Interpersonal Regulation). 

Equine-facilitated therapy is a gentle yet profound way in which Sarah supports trauma clients, many of whom have survived unwanted sexual experiences. The horses usually guide clients in setting healthier boundaries and building trust through safe touch. Sarah is certified in equine therapy by IFEEL and LEAP.

Sarah is a faculty member for IFEEL, teaching on an Ofqual-regulated Level 6 and emerging Level 7 practitioner training in equine-facilitated psycho-traumatology.

Sarah also teaches on The Grove’s supervision course, given her experience in supervising therapists through each stage of their professional development: as trainees, then qualified therapists, plus supporting supervisees towards BACP accreditation or UKCP registration. Her clinical management role at the practice also involves the practical application of ethical principles including boundaries, contracting, confidentiality, balancing the client’s autonomy with upholding the role of the therapist, all within the commercial context of The Grove. 

Feedback on Sarah’s teaching style indicates that she is “structured and informed”. 

Elliot Davis Elliot is a practising psychotherapist based in London,  certified as Clinical Trauma Profession Level I (CCCTP-Level I) and a Complex Trauma Professional (CCTP-II).  He has worked extensively with survivors of domestic abuse, sexual abuse and rape, road accident survivors with life-changing injures and military veterans. He is accredited by the UKCP & BACP.

Elliot’s initial training was completed at the Centre for Counselling and Psychotherapy (CCPE) completing a combined academic/experiential five- year postgraduate Diploma.

Elliot has trained in a range of approaches to treating trauma. His focussed studies have been around the treatment of Dissociation, Increasing Awareness of Dysregulated Parts and Dissociative States, Working with Traumatic Memory in Dissociative Identity Disorder (DID), Traumatic Attachment and the Treatment of Dissociative Disorders. He has further trained in the evidence-based protocol of CPT (Cognitive Processing Therapy) which falls under the NICE guidelines for Trauma-Focused CBT (Cognitive Behavioural Therapy). 

He has developed a specialist focus for symptomatic relief as a first stage in trauma treatment, using a range of approaches for emotional regulation and stabilisation of symptoms such as flashbacks or panic attacks, including STAIR (Skills Training in Affect and Interpersonal Regulation).

He has received CPD psycho-traumatology training with the following acclaimed teachers in the Trauma field:

  • Babette Rothschild
  • Bessel van der Kolk MD
  • Dr Janina Fisher

He holds multiple accreditations including a Diploma in Counselling and Psychotherapy from Birkbeck University and Dip (Psych) from CCPE. He also holds further Certification in Couples Counselling and has studied various trauma treatment protocols. Elliot has worked within the NHS supporting a multi-disciplinary team in Acute Admissions. He has also worked in the charity sector and with all sizes of commercial organisations.

Dr James Kustow  James is Medical Director of The Grove and practises as a Consultant Psychiatrist in Harley Street.

Trauma is a significant area of his work and he is experienced in diagnosing PTSD alongside trauma treatment planning. 

He runs a truly integrative private clinic located at 127 Harley Street, and also works in the NHS one day a week in the field of Adult ADHD. James is a general adult psychiatrist with considerable experience working with the full range of mental health problems encountered in adulthood. In recent years, he has worked as a psychiatrist to a London-based university, seeing students with mental health difficulties.

He is also a trained integrative psychotherapist and has an interest, and many years of experience using, body-focussed interventions when working with psychological trauma and its various and broad ranging manifestations. Amongst other approaches he is trained in hypnotherapy (Diploma), EMDR (Adv) and EFT (Adv). James has also trained in nutrition, believing this to be critical for optimal mental wellbeing.

James studied medicine in Nottingham and trained in psychiatry with the South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust (Guys and St Thomas’ hospitals) and at St Mary’s Hospital.

James is a respected clinician both within and outside the NHS. One of his main areas of specialist expertise is Adult ADHD. He works in one of the very few London-based specialist Adult ADHD services in the NHS. He is on the Executive Board of UKAAN (the main professional organisation for Adult ADHD in the UK) and is UKAAN’s Training Programme Director. The comprehensive training programme UKAAN offers is highly regarded in the UK and further afield.

Dr Walter Busuttil has a long and distinguished career in diagnosing and treating PTSD across the breath of military and civilian populations. As a Consultant Psychiatrist, his current role is Director of Research and Training at Combat Stress. Previously he held the position of Medical Director of Combat Stress for 13 years, following his original psychiatry training and career with the RAF. He was formerly part of the management team for the Traumatic Stress Service at the Priory Ticehurst Hospital. He has been a member of the International Society for Traumatic Stress Studies since 1992. He was a member of the UK Trauma Group from 1998 and was then Chair of the UK Trauma Group for five years until 2013. He was also a Founder Board Member of the UK Psychological Trauma Society between 2010 and 2013.  

Dr Busuttil graduated in Medicine from the University of Manchester in 1983. He served in the Medical Branch of the Royal Air Force for 16 years. He was appointed a consultant psychiatrist in 1994. Prior to this in 1988 he qualified as a Principal in General Practice. In the RAF he was part of the team that helped rehabilitate the Beirut Hostages and combatants from the first Gulf War. Between 1997 and 2004 he set up and led a tertiary referral service for sufferers of complex presentations of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder including adult survivors of sexual abuse at the Priory Ticehurst House Hospital in East Sussex. He was then appointed Medical Director to the all-women’s medium secure hospital, ‘The Dene’ in Burgess Hill, West Sussex; where he established a combined dialectic behaviour therapy and psychological trauma service for women suffering from Complex PTSD and Borderline Personality Disorder.

Dr Busuttil joined Combat Stress in June 2007 where he set up cutting edge evidence-based clinical services which replaced respite care services. Clinical services comprised multidisciplinary residential and community evidence-based intervention therapy programmes. In 2011 his service design bid was awarded £20 million from NHS England National Specialist Commissioning to set up residential rehabilitation programmes for veterans suffering from severe chronic PTSD. These programmes were also funded in Scotland commissioned by NHS Scottish. He is a member of the NHSE Armed Forces Clinical Reference Psychiatry Task and Finish Group. He regularly liaises at the highest levels with politicians, the NHS, MoD and other agencies. He regularly comments about psychological trauma issues in the national and international media.

Dr Busuttil set up the Combat Stress Veterans’ Research Department in 2014 embedding it within the Kings Centre for Military Health Research. In the past 5 years, this department has produced over 50 peer-reviewed papers and several book chapters and one book on veterans’ mental health. He has supervised and facilitated the development of collaborations with UK and internationally-based universities and organisations in Australia, Canada and the USA. He gave evidence to the Defence Select Committee related to mental health needs and treatment service provision for veterans in the UK in 2018. Since 2018 he has been part of the 5 Eyes Mental Health Research and Innovation Collaborative (5 Eyes MRIC) representing UK Veterans’ Mental Health which advises the 5 Veterans’ Ministers of the United Kingdom, the USA, Canada, New Zealand and Australia. He has published over 70 peer-reviewed papers and book chapters on PTSD and related disorders; as an invited speaker he has delivered over 240 presentations including keynote lectures, workshops and original research papers in the UK and abroad. He has offered training in military and veteran psychiatry, management of adult survivors and complex PTSD and Dissociative Disorders; disaster management and psychological first aid to first responders; and the biological theories of PTSD and interventions using medications.  He has been an invited member on several international Round Tables concerning military psychiatry, psychological first aid and early interventions and treatment approaches.

Dr Busuttil is also active in private practice managing clinical cases as well as undertaking medico-legal work. He routinely assesses and treats patients suffering the effects of psychological trauma generated by road traffic accidents, interpersonal violence, accidents at work, clinical negligence, disaster and conflict.

For this course, he teaches on diagnostics for trauma presentations, the role for medication, management of co-morbidities, and the role of trauma as the underpinning for many common psychiatric disorders. He brings a wealth of experience in clinical settings and in running traumatic stress treatment services.

Phil Mollon tutor for The GrovePhil Mollon is a psychoanalyst, psychotherapist, and clinical psychologist, and has taught widely throughout the UK and internationally. His passion is Psychoanalytic Energy Psychotherapy, a field that Dr Mollon pioneered, combining the principles of energy psychology with the deeper understanding of psychoanalysis. He is the author of 12 professional books, several of which concern trauma, traumatic memory, and trauma-based dissociation. His 1996 book Multiple Selves, Multiple Voices (Wiley) was the first UK book on working psychotherapeutically with people with DID and trauma-based personality disorders. Dr Mollon, worked in the NHS full time for 37 years, and was head of psychology and psychotherapy services for north Hertfordshire. He is the immediate past president of the international organisation, the Association for Comprehensive Energy Psychology (ACEP).

For this course, Phil teaches approaches to trauma therapy using energy psychology.

Ashley Meyer tutor for The GroveAshley Meyer

London-based Ashley Meyer has been involved with EFT and Energy Psychology since 2004 when he first became a practitioner. Discovering how “tapping” revolutionised his client work, he went on to become an advanced practitioner and then master practitioner as well as a trainer accredited and certified by the worldwide professional body, EFT International.

In addition to EFT, Ashley has trained in other energy psychology techniques, NLP and hypnotherapy. He is a Psychosynthesis counsellor and is currently working towards his MA in Psychosynthesis Psychotherapy.

Ashley has had extensive experience working with “mind-body” conditions, specifically conditions for which western medicine offer little advice or hope. Chronic Fatigue and ME have been central to this interest as has the impact of trauma on the body and energy system. For this training, Ashley teaches EFT in relation to trauma clients, drawing on his extensive experience in the field. He continues to deepen his work by attending CPD events when available, including seminars run by Bessel van der Kolk, Gabor Mate and Peter Levine. Ashley also provides support to a new charity, Support Veterans UK, in both a clinical and training capacity.

Authenticity is central to Ashley’s approach and he relishes any opportunity to share his passion through his inspirational trainings.

For this course, Ashley teaches EFT “tapping” according to the EFTI (Emotional Freedom Technique International) syllabus. Therapists who attend this part of The Grove’s trauma therapy course will be eligible to work towards accreditation with EFTI – which will be an additional cost and time commitment outside The Grove’s training provision, potentially supported by Ashley Meyer for supervision towards accreditation.

Matt Carey 

Matt was eight years old when he was targeted by a group of predatory paedophiles who subjected him to 18-months of horrific sexual abuse in the public toilets of local parks and on the sea front of his hometown. He was too ashamed and scared to tell anyone what had happened…not his parents, friends or family.

In his acclaimed book, A Small Boy Smiling, Matt tells a remarkable story of survival and overcoming the trauma, guilt and shame of childhood sexual abuse, teenage alcoholism, sexual anorexia, and post-traumatic stress disorder. His lifelong search for peace, love and healing culminates in personal spiritual awakening and a desire to help other survivors of sexual abuse to discover their own healing. 

The book includes a chapter written by Matt’s trauma therapist Sarah Paton Briggs, called Soulful Space: Reflections On My Therapy Work With Matt. Matt invited Sarah to pull back the curtain of client/therapist confidentiality and write a chapter about his therapy sessions with her from the therapist’s perspective.

Since the book was published in 2018, Matt has been busy promoting the book with public talks, and both he and Sarah were invited to discuss the book on BBC 5 Live’s Stephen Nolan show. An article (which presents an overview of Matt’s journey of healing) entitled Trying To Make Sense Of It All, had subsequently been published on the Survivors UK and the National Association of Adult Survivors of Child Abuse (NAASCA) websites.

A link to the radio interview and the articles can be found at www.mattcareybooks.com 

For this trauma therapy course, Matt is generously willing to share his insights for counsellors on how they can provide effective therapy for survivors of CSA. The survivor’s voice can be heard, along with validation that recovery takes time but is possible for this client group. 

Matt has enjoyed working in the world of entertainment for over twenty years, as a theatre manager, organiser of several prestigious international festivals, and of large-scale community-based cultural projects supporting children and young people.

This course caters for a range of mental health practitioners and related healthcare professionals who wish to develop their skills in providing trauma therapy, also known as psycho-traumatology.

This course is designed for qualified therapists, counsellors, psychotherapists, psychologists, social workers or anyone whose client group or caseload includes adults presenting with trauma and dissociation.

Those who work with children or adolescents (CYP client group) will also benefit from attending this training. Although for trauma work with CYP, The Grove expects the practitioner to hold a qualification with prior experience of working with children / adolescents / young people, consistent with the applicable professional scope of practice.

Participants on this course are required by The Grove to hold membership of a professional body and to work in accordance with that code of ethics, as well as undertaking regular supervision relevant to their scope of practice, as mandated by their professional membership(s).

This course provides participants with the knowledge and skills to work therapeutically with clients who present with symptoms of psychological trauma. The Grove expects participants from this course to work within their competence and under clinical supervision, with awareness of when onward referral or multi-disciplinary working may be in the client’s best interests, such as the potential role for medication or psychiatry.

Those who work with children or adolescents may also benefit from attending this training. Although mental health professionals working with children are expected by The Grove to hold prior qualification and experience with children / adolescents / young people, consistent with their professional scope of practice.

Trauma therapy supervision can be offered by separate arrangement. The Grove is happy to suggest supervisors skilled and experienced in psychotraumatology.

Applicants are expected to be qualified and experienced professionals in a helping profession, who are secure in their mode of practice. This will be covered in the application form. All applicants are expected to:

  • be qualified and experienced in their field,
  • be full members of their professional body (such as but not limited to BACP,  UKCP,  BPS,  AHPP,  NCP,  NCS,  ACC )
  • hold professional liability insurance
  • have supervision arrangements in place for their client work as well as access to support for any supervision practice they undertake during the course.

Read our terms and conditions for courses, including our complaints procedure.

How is this course different from others?

The Grove’s trauma training includes all these elements (some of which aren’t included in other trauma courses):

  • 12 days of training for in-depth learning.
  • History of trauma, the trauma continuum, diagnostics and outcome measures.
  • Evidence-based treatment approaches.
  • Emerging body-based approaches to treating trauma.
  • Appreciation of developmental, relational, attachment-based views of trauma.
  • Role of grounding and mind-body awareness in stabilising dissociation along with anxiety and depression as comorbidities.
  • The choice of attending as CPD only at Certificate level, or including written assignments at Diploma level.

Some trauma CPD events are delivered in a short format over a few hours or perhaps 1 or 2 days, without adding further depth of learning. Other courses may teach diagnostics and protocols without attention to enhancing the client relationship. While yet other trainings focus on developmental or attachment without an evidence-based underpinning; or miss out mind-body approaches altogether. 

By contrast, this course combines all these elements: a methodical approach to defining, then assessing and treating trauma and dissociation; with a solid grounding in distinguishing between different trauma presentations based on latest diagnostic considerations; framed in a client-centred relational way; plus attendees will be equipped with a toolkit of skills for evidence-based treatment in the context of understanding the wider overview of trauma protocols. This is all framed within mind-body awareness as pyscho-education for clients.

A unique feature on this course is that there is input from psychiatrists, as well as traumatologists and other specialist trainers.

Trauma therapy can differ from other modes of counselling or psychotherapy, in that the psychoeducation aspect is more overt. The trauma therapist at times will need to be more didactic especially in providing psychoeducation elements. The approach of the trauma therapist  involves attending to good balance between over- and under-nurturing, monitoring their own competence, as well as extending the “high support, high challenge” course culture into their trauma therapy practice.

Testimonials from previous course participants, which are genuine feedback comments and featured here with kind permission from each author:

Diversity and Respect Statement

The Grove is committed to the provision of training which is inclusive for participants from a diverse range of professional and cultural backgrounds. The Grove’s diversity policy upholds participation by trainees which respects differences in ability and disability, age, sex, gender diversity, race, religion, culture, and theoretical modality. The Grove’s course terms and conditions provide for each participant being seen, heard and respected during their attendance at course events. These terms are shown in the course contract which every applicant is expected to embrace when enrolling; and are described in the course handbook at the start of the training. Any participant may be suspended from the course if their behaviour is deemed by The Grove to be contrary to this statement.

Based in London W1, we offer a unique blend of mental health support: psychotherapy, psychiatry, professional training courses in mental health, integrated wellbeing & equine-facilitated programmes.

Contact Us

Phone: 020 7637 7763

The Grove Practice,
4 Wimpole Street,

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