Barbara Ward, BA, MSW, RSW, Ph.D.
Waterloo Region District School Board
Kitchener, Ontario, Canada
Phone: (519) 503-6660
Barbara Ward, BA, MSW, RSW, PhD is a leading expert in children’s mental health with 25 years’ experience in the field. Her training and knowledge of child and youth trauma encompasses family violence, abuse and neglect, complex trauma, post-traumatic stress disorder, and children’s mental health. She has presented across Canada on how trauma impacts children’s wellness including their social, emotional, spiritual and physical development, in addition to their ability to learn. This includes working from the perspective of post traumatic growth, positive psychology, overall wellness and social constructionism. Barbara’s presentations also focus on the significance of providing a trauma-informed system that is responsive to the needs of children, youth and their families. Barbara also has a strong focus on building staff resilience and understands the interconnections between staff wellness and organizational trauma and stress.
Barbara is currently the Mental Health Lead with the Waterloo Region District School Board, influencing the education system as it attends to student mental wellness.
Among her significant previous positions in a large Children’s Mental Health organization, Barbara served as the Director of Services- Children’s Mental Health, and Manager-Child and Family Therapy Program where she provided clinical leadership to intensive services, including the school, residential, clinical, respite, and per diem programs. As a Child and Family Therapist, she led families and treatment teams in creating and operationalizing effective treatment interventions that attended to the client’s wellness, resilience and trauma healing.
Barbara is a registered social worker with the Ontario College of Social Workers and Social Service Workers (OCSWSSW), and holds a Master of Social Work degree (MSW) from Wilfrid Laurier University as well as an Honours Bachelor of Arts degree (Psychology) from University of Waterloo. She has specialized training in Heart-Centred Hypnotherapy (Wellness Institute, Seattle), suicide prevention (safeTALK and ASIST) and Trauma Focused Cognitive Behaviour Therapy (TF CBT). Barbara has recently completed her PhD in Psychology with the Taos Institute and Vrije University Brussels, Belgium. Her dissertation focused on the reconstruction of the concept of childhood trauma.