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News Release: Community Forum on Trauma Response in the County


Community Forum Oct. 8 on Trauma Response in the County

September 27, 2019

CONTACT: Charles County Charitable Trust, 301-934-3700




When a Charles County resident has been victimized by a traumatic event, what help is available? This question will serve as the underlying theme of a community forum on Oct. 8. Called “Building a Trauma Response Network in Charles County,” the event will start with reviewing the current state of local trauma services and go on to identify ways of collaborating more effectively to meet the needs of trauma victims.

The forum, organized by the Charles County Service & Advocacy Network, will run from 8:30 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.  Sponsored as a public service by the Charles County Charitable Trust, the co-sponsors are the Charles County Department of Social Services and the Good Samaritan Presbyterian Church, where the free event will take place. To register, go to

Therese Wolf, Director of the Department of Social Services, will make the opening presentation and serve as moderator. An eight-person panel drawn from public agencies and nonprofit organizations will provide a picture of the range of trauma services in the county. The panelists will discuss the many ways in which trauma can impact the daily life of the victim.

They will also describe how trauma-response systems are functioning and how responders and caregivers are affected by their involvement with trauma victims. Members of the audience will have opportunities throughout the day to contribute to the discussion.

Wolf said that the aim is to end up the day with consensus as to the next steps that need to be taken to assure a “trauma-responsive community” – one in which trauma is recognized, whatever its cause, and is responded to appropriately.

Trauma occurs when a person experiences a physically or emotionally harmful or life-threatening event that leads to lasting effects in terms of the victim’s loss of a sense of well-being. It is commonly accepted that large-scale events such as war and natural disasters can engender lasting effects on those exposed to them. However, as the forum will demonstrate, a wide range of other adverse experiences can produce a similar outcome. Serious accidents, criminal assault, child abuse, domestic abuse, and gun violence all fit into this category.

Many systems operating in the community deal with trauma and its effects. Prominent among them are law enforcement, emergency services, schools, social services programs, health care providers, and children’s advocates. The panelists at the Oct. 8 forum will describe the responsibilities of their respective programs and share ideas about next steps.

  • Charles County Department of Health (Jackie Burson)
  • Charles County Public Schools (Bethany Goodwin)
  • Charles County Department of Social Services (Lorrie Brennan and Renee Curry)
  • The Center for Children (Catherine Meyers)
  • The University of Maryland Charles Regional Medical Center (Matthew Schatz)
  • Charles County Sheriff’s Office (Andrew Schwab)
  • Charles County Department of Juvenile Services (Laura Estupinan-Kane)

Additional information is available by contacting the Charles County Charitable Trust at 301-934-3700 or

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