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Indigenous Trauma and Resiliency Practicum (ITR)

Indigenous Trauma and Resiliency (ITR) Practicum

Trauma-informed practice

Trauma-informed services recognize that the core of any service is genuine, authentic and compassionate relationships. Trauma-informed systems and organizations provide for everyone within that system or organization by having a basic understanding of the psychological, neurological, biological, social and spiritual impact that trauma and violence can have on individuals seeking support.

At its core, the trauma-informed model replaces the labelling of clients or patients as being ‘sick,’ ‘resistant’ or ‘uncooperative’ with that of being affected by an ‘injury’. Viewing trauma as an injury shifts the conversation from asking “What is wrong with you?” to “What has happened to you?” (Trauma-informed: The Trauma Toolkit, Klinic Community Health Centre, Second Edition, 2013).

Purpose of the Practicum

The development of social work competence is primary objective of the Master of Social Work (MSW) Program at the Factor-Inwentash Faculty of Social Work (FIFSW), University of Toronto. Graduates, employers and educators credit field education as one of the most important elements of social work education programs.  An experiential form of teaching and learning, it is achieved through the provision and / or development of services to clients, communities, organizations or the larger society. Social service, education and health organizations voluntarily demonstrate their commitment to social work education by offering practicums where knowledge is integrated with practice, and social work competence can be developed.

The Practicum Office coordinates and supports the activities of the various stakeholders in order to ensure that FIFSW students have the opportunity to develop competence in social work. We encourage familiarity with the Practicum Manual. Summary links are below in this document.

Field Instructors play a vital role in our students’ education. As experienced social workers who adhere to ITR Field Instruction Standards, field instructors oversee and guide students in the provision of services to clients, organizations and communities.

ITR practicums share similarities with the other practicums, and have unique aspects:

  • Students who enter the 2-year program with a BSW complete do not complete a Year 1 Practicum
  • ITR practicums are 450 hours
  • Year 2 ITR practicums include a 40-hour community intervention
  • Practicums can be with Elders, respected cultural mentors and skilled professionals
  • Practicums focus on and emphasize the strong connection between personal, cultural, professional, and academic development
  • Students discern individual resiliency through the values, ceremonies and teachings of their cultural heritage
  • Students experience hands-on learning in one or more specific areas of trauma intervention and treatment.


Students requesting accommodation should register with Accessibility Services. Information on how to register with Accessibility Services is available online: Students requesting accommodation for practicum should discuss this with their assigned Accessibility Advisor as soon as possible prior to the practicum matching process. An Advisor can confirm practicum accommodations by providing a letter directly to the Practicum Office.


ITR Practicum partner agencies

  • Anishnawbe Health, Toronto
  • Broadway Youth Resource Centre, Victoria
  • Calgary Distress Centre
  • Centre for Addiction and Mental Health, Toronto
  • Emily Carr University, Vancouver
  • Enaahtig Healing Lodge, Victoria Harbour ON
  • The Etobicoke Children’s Centre, Toronto
  • Four Winds Community Employment Services, Stony Point First Nation, ON
  • Georgian bay Native Women’s Association, Midland ON
  • Hull Services, Calgary
  • Kackaamin Family Development Centre, Port Alberni BC
  • Kahnawake Shakotiia’takehnhas Community Services, Kahnawake PQ
  • KAIROS Canadian Ecumenical Justice Initiatives, Toronto
  • Mamawetan Churchill River Health Region, La Ronge SK
  • Na Me Res, Toronto
  • Native Child and Family Services, Toronto
  • North Simcoe Muskoka LHIN, Orillia ON
  • Northumberland Community Legal Centre, Cobourg ON
  • Nuu-chah-nulth Tribal Council, Port Alberni BC
  • Olthuis Kleer Townsend LLP, Toronto
  • Peterborough Regional Health Centre
  • Rainbow District School Board, Sudbury ON
  • Royal Alexandra Hospital, Edmonton
  • Royal Victoria Regional Health Centre, Barrie ON
  • Ryerson University, Toronto
  • Sickkids Hospital, Toronto
  • Simcoe Muskoka Regional Cancer Program, Barrie ON
  • Southwest Ontario Aboriginal Health Centre, London ON
  • Unison Health and Community Services, Toronto
  • United Way of Calgary
  • University of Western Ontario, London ON
  • Waypoint Centre for Mental Health Care, Penetanguishene ON
  • Women’s Support Network of York Region, Toronto
  • York University School of Social Work, Toronto

The Matching Process

FIFSW students signed the Code of Conduct at admission. Please find more information at:

Students are informed, if accommodations are required, to register as soon as possible with Accessibility Services and obtain a letter outlining the accommodations required for their practicum.

The FIFSW Practicum Office will work with students to locate a practicum supervisor who meets the ITR Field Instruction Standards. Field instructors are also encouraged to e-mail with their practicum offer at any time. Practicums are posted on our Practicum Administration System (PAS). Field instructors are provided a password to access their profile with their practicum offer, and describe the requirements such as a driver’s license, a car, evening and/or weekend hours.

Once approved and matched, a customized schedule indicating major milestones and a Learning/Safety Checklist will be e-mailed to the student, field instructor and Faculty-Field Liaison.

Students and potential field instructors must submit an Employment-Based Practicum Application to be considered for a practicum in a place of employment.


Learning / Safety Checklist, Learning Contract, Mid-term and Final Evaluation

The Learning/Safety Checklist is due on Day 2 of the Practicum. It is completed by the student and field instructor, and submitted to

The Learning Contract is due on Day 12 of the Practicum, is completed by the student and field instructor, and e-mailed to the Faculty-Field Liaison. Students and field instructors are encouraged to review the evaluation tool when developing their Learning Contract.

The online evaluation tool is completed on the PAS at mid-term and on the final day of practicum.


40-hour Community Intervention

More information about the 40-hour Community Intervention is available at 40-hour Community Intervention.

For information about setting up your 40-hour Intervention, please see 40-hour Community Intervention FAQs.

Upon completion of the 40-hour Community Intervention, students are required to complete the Community Intervention evaluation with their supervisor and submit it to the Practicum Office.



Updated May 2018