Embrace the Power of Racial Healing

With the Urban Trauma Provider Network (UTPN).

About the UTPN

The Urban Trauma® Provide Network serves youth in communities of color adversely effected by racial trauma.
In partnership with Dr. Steven Kniffley, the goal of this collaboration is to make impactful, empathetic mental health services accessible to youth in Connecticut.

 Partnering With Our Providers Enriches Racial Trauma Healing Journeys

The models used by the UTPN focused on youth of color, are based on the work of groundbreaking psychologist, best-selling author and healer, Dr. Maysa Akbar, PhD, ABPP and the work of Dr. Steven Kniffley.


Dr. Maysa Akbar’s Urban Trauma Model®

Dr. Maysa Akbar’s Urban Trauma® model addresses three critical areas important in people of color’s journey toward mental wellness after experiencing racial trauma:

Historical Trauma

History is essential to gaining insight about Urban Trauma® – multigenerational and chronic exposure to racialized trauma, dating from the enslavement of Africans to today’s mass incarceration, implicit and unconscious bias. A key aspect of overcoming racial trauma is learning about the lasting and detrimental effects of racism through a historical lens to support individual growth and support the identification of where our struggles may have arisen from.

Biology & Epigenetics

Incidents of racial trauma over time become integrated in our genetic makeup. Epigenetics has identified a marker for traumatic stress in our DNA, generated by daily exposure to both subtle and explicit forms of racism. Inherited trauma, often passed down from one generation to another, can cause devastating effects on both physical and mental health. By covering how historical racism has impacted people of color at a biological level, individuals are better able to understand where their frustrations, anger, and other mental health impacts are stemming from in order to begin healing.

Toxic Environment

We are an extension of our environment and it needs to be discussed in order to progress in our wellness journeys. Nurture plays a crucial role in our development, including how we handle our challenges and successes. Pervasive exposure to inequities in urban environments can make people of color more susceptible to urban trauma. In order to break the cycles of generational traumas this model encourages individuals to discuss and work through their own unique toxic environments and exposures to inequity in order to heal from them.

Dr. Steven Kniffley’s Racial Trauma Therapy Model

The Kniffley Racial Trauma Therapy Model (KRTTM) addresses three areas important to supporting youth of color who have experienced race-related stress and trauma:

Discussions and therapeutic conversations concerning the physiological, psychological, and relational impact of race-related stress and trauma

The utilization of evidence-based assessment tools for racial identity development, quantifying discriminatory experiences, and determining the physical and emotional impact of racially stressful events
The application of culturally relevant therapeutic techniques rooted in racial identity exploration/development, racial trauma processing, and skill development

Find Your Ideal Service Provider

The Urban Trauma Provider Network (UTPN) is currently accepting clients and referrals. Through our partnership with the Department of Children and Families, we have invited eight prominent mental health organizations within our state,  within four of Connecticut’s largest cities, to pioneer this innovative approach within the communities that they serve. We encourage you to contact one of our partner organizations to learn more about receiving the mental health services.

Select your desired partner via the links below.