The Impact of Childhood Complexity

This workshop explores how key issues in child and adolescent development impact on the individuals long term life course. It explores normative development in order to identify how ruptures within this process influence development and predict the complexities that adults may face in later life. This includes what makes children / young people prone to problems, such as neglect and trauma, and considers how therapeutic processes can address these concerns in later life. Drawing on robust and compelling research throughout, this workshop will offer participants a deep understanding of developmental complexity. It will also help practitioners identify sub-groups of complexity and offer rapid symptom management strategies to support clients through a longer journey of change.

By the end of the workshop participants will have had opportunities to:

  • Understand the impact of interruptions to the normative life course;
  • Identify the long term trajectories of those affective by trauma and neglect;
  • Map key neural systems that drive change;
  • Provide a range of practical interventions to reduce symptoms.

Our facilitator is Phil Harris, who has worked in the drug misuse field for over 28 years as a practitioner, trainer and manager. His extensive experience includes working, and managing teams, in frontline drug and alcohol services, street homeless day centres and mental health services. He is a visiting lecturer at Bristol University Social Policy Unit, and was advisor to the US BICEP programme, as well as to the World Health Organisation in the Balkans region. He has written over 20 scholarly articles on effective practice and has published five books on substance misuse, treatment effectiveness, family and young people with complex needs. He has also designed county-wide and residential treatment programmes for young people. Currently he is also the Lead for Psychological Interventions for a large mental health service managing complex cases, personality disorder, dual diagnosis and suicide prevention teams.   Visit for more information.


Tea, coffee and biscuits will be provided during the day. Please bring your own lunch. There are a number of convenience stores and food outlets in the neighbourhood, and we have kitchen facilities on site.

Cancellation Policy

Please note that we require a minimum of seven days’ notice of cancellation before the day of the workshop, otherwise the full fee will be payable. No part of the fee can be refunded for non-attendance on the day.

To book a place go to The Little Box Office or download a booking form from here:

CPD 20A Childhood Complexity – Booking Form

Download a flyer from here:

CPD 20A Childhood Complexity – A5 Flyer

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