Children Impacted by Covid-19: Applying a Trauma Informed Approach 

February 3, 2023

Entering 2023, we are starting to observe the fuller effect of the impact that the pandemic may have had on our children. From preschool age to university students, it’s hard to imagine a life without a direct consequence of Covid-19.  The Pandemic created uncertainty, fear and left many struggling, which was intensified by inequity, inequality having arrived hot on the tails of the ideology of austerity and Brexit. Being born into the pandemic, starting school, changing school, taking exams, transitioning into college or seeking independence in University the impact will be woven into the fabric of a developing human. 

According to BBC Children in Need, the pandemic was felt to have had a detrimental impact on children’s lives by heightening existing challenges and risks, a reduction in support and a regression in individual progress. Alongside this have been the long-term mental health and well-being considerations once restrictions were lifted.

Our Director Lisa Cherry explains further; "The narrative of ‘getting back to “normal”’ fails to understand the dynamic relational and experiential way that we develop. We don’t go back. There is no back. We have changed. We have adapted, grown and developed in our environments and children undergo that process speedily." 

Covid-19 was, and still is, experienced as a trauma for many, with multiple areas to consider. eight of which were highlighted by BBC Children in Need in their Early Pandemic Period Report, July 2020. 

That report highlights these areas to consider:


Increased emotional well-being and mental health challenges

Pressure on family relationships

Increased exposure to harm

Basic needs are harder to meet

Reduced access to education & activities

Risks to physical wellbeing

Concern for the future

The impact has not vanished as though it didn't happen and the cost of living crisis that has ensued has expanded the challenges faced by families up and down the country. Underpinning Trauma Informed principles into your setting, service or system is now more important than ever. A trauma-informed approach can support children, young people, families and those working in the settings that support them, dealing with the impact of the areas highlighted in the report above. This might look like:

  • Cultivating psychological safety throughout the setting
  • Adopting policies that understand how humans deal with stress and overwhelm
  • Developing opportunities to build relational webs of support inside and outside of the setting, service or system
  • Understanding the inequities that exist in our society
  • Actively reducing stigma and shame
  • Making space and time for ‘moving the body’ 
  • Focusing on learning and experiences that cultivate hope

Proceed with caution, deepen the art of noticing and if you need any help and support in creating Trauma Informed environments, evaluating them or just a general chat about ‘all things Trauma Informed’, please get in touch with Lyndsay, our Working Together Lead at and our team will support you in your journey.

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