Infant-Toddler Trauma-Informed Care Project (ITTI Care)

ITTI Care works with the existing early care and education workforce support system to expand and strengthen trauma-informed knowledge and practice within the communities they serve. Our goal is to build a professional development framework for the infant/toddler child care workforce across North Carolina to promote trauma-informed child care and early childhood workforce wellness. Project staff train and support professionals (e.g., technical assistants, consultants, mentors, higher education practicum support) in coaching roles with licensed child care programs serving infants and toddlers to become experts in trauma-informed child care. These ITTI Care-trained coaches will then train and coach infant/toddler teachers, family child care home professionals and child care center directors to: 1) Promote understanding of the impacts of stress and trauma on infants and toddlers, 2) Support infant/toddler teaching practices that develop and strengthen supportive, resilience-building relationships and environments, and 3) Identify effective strategies to support child care provider well-being. 


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Fast Facts

Relevant Actions
State or Local? State
CountiesAnson, Cabarrus, Caldwell, Catawba, Chowan, Cleveland, Durham, Forsyth, Gates, Gaston, Guilford, Haywood, Henderson, Iredell, Johnston, Lincoln, Mecklenburg, Nash, New Hanover, Onslow, Orange, Richmond, Stanly, Union, Vance, Wake, Wilkes
Lead Agency Duke Center for Child & Family Policy
Type of Lead Agency


Racial Equity Lens
  • Disaggregates data by racial identify for child care staff and children to guide strategy and assess impact.
  • Centers cultural responsiveness and intersectionality of ACEs, racism, and trauma.
  • Promotes cultural humility and confronts implicit bias by actively engaging participants in self-reflection, self-awareness around cultural responsiveness and promoting relationship-based practice across differences.
Community Voice
  • Centers the voices and wellness of family child care home professionals, infant-toddler teachers and directors as foundational to providing trauma informed child care
  • At every level of the project, from project staff and project planning committee to program participants, people of color and those most directly engaged with the child care community are guiding the initiative.
  • Defines trauma-informed practice using six principles adapted from SAMHSA and Trauma Informed Principles through a Culturally Specific Lens    
  • 34 early childhood education professionals who provide coaching to infant and toddler classrooms and family child care homes across multiple regions have completed the training phase of the ITTI Care learning collaborative. 
  • Partnered with 41 child care centers, 124 classrooms & 8 FCCH. The project provides consultation to early childhood education support system organizations (e.g. CCR&R, local Smart Starts, Early Head Starts, community college early childhood departments, NC Child Care Health & Safety Resource Center)  to support them in reaching their goals of becoming a more trauma-informed organization.  
  • Developed and provided six-month learning experience called “Cultivating NC Early Childhood Equity Champions” for 2 cohorts of (total of 46) early childhood professionals who support the child care community.  
  • Provided Reflective Supervision for Supervisors training and coaching for over 48 supervisors of early care & education coaches
  • Provided Motivational Interviewing for Early Care & Education Coaches training and coaching for over 77 early care & education coaches
Next Steps
  • Continue coaching 8 Cohort 4 coaches in Project Implementation Phase
  • Begin consultation support for organizations employing the 8 coaches in Cohort 4     
  • Open application for Cohorts 5 & 6
  • Collaborate with NCAEYC to train 100 child care center directors on Mental Health First Aid curriculum 
  • Develop recommendations for NC Child Care Workplace Standards 
  • Develop asynchronous professional development workshops for providers to promote trauma-informed practice
Primary Partners
  • DCDEE (funder)/PDG
  • Local Smart Start/Partnerships for Children     
  • Community College Early Childhood Departments in Stanly, Haywood and Johnston Counties 
  • NC Child, Child Care Resource & Referral System (Child Care Resources Inc., Southwestern Child Development Commission, Child Care Services Association), Guilford Child Development, HSB Statewide Project, B3NC Statewide Project)
  • UNC’s NC Child Care Health & Safety Resource Center
Primary Funders
  • NC DHHS, Division of Child Development and Early Education 
Contact Ennis Baker

Active Counties