3 Levels of Resilience & Trauma

Trauma, and the need for resilience, do not exist only at the individual or family level.

Individual & Family



Individual traumas are the most widely known type of trauma. Examples of individual trauma include abuse, neglect, violence between individuals, homelessness, medical crisis, incarceration, parental substance use, unmanaged mental illness, and the absence of a caregiver through separation, divorce, or death.

Individual resilience is the lifelong process of building the ability to overcome stress, hardship, and difficulties. Exercising resilience can improve how an individual functions in their family, with friends, and in society, as well as helping maintain psychological and physical wellbeing. The resilience strategies and coping systems that are most effective may be different for each person.

Family resilience refers to the family’s ability to function and care for its members following traumatic events. Family resilience depends on several factors: the challenge from current difficulties, the level of pre-existing stress and everyday hassles, the family’s coping skills, and the resources available from family members and in the community. Community and cultural context can influence family resilience. (NCTSN)

Organizational trauma can occur from high caseloads, harmful policies, unsupportive management, white supremacy culture and discrimination, and/or traumatic experiences within the organization or with clients.

Organizations increase their resilience when they use a trauma lens and engage in trauma-informed practices such as centering the 6 SAMHSA principles of safety, transparency, collaboration, peer support, shared power, and inclusive practices.

Any community can experience trauma. While some community trauma comes from individual events, other community trauma comes from ongoing conditions such as limited economic opportunities, lack of social services, poor housing conditions, racial violence, and prevalent community violence.

Community resilience helps the community survive, adapt, and recover from trauma. Community engagement and investment, fair local policies, and transparent, trauma-informed systems help communities become resilient.



If you or a loved one need ongoing support, please call the HopeNC Helpline at 1-855-587-3463. Available 24 hours per day seven days a week, this number connects North Carolinians to mental bealth and resilience supports to help them cope and build resilience during times of crisis. Health care professionals, emergency medical specialists, first responders, healthcare workers, and their families can also call the Hope4Healers Helpline (919-226-2002) for mental health and resilience support as they work on the front lines.