Trauma Recovery and Empowerment Model (TREM) Intervention Summary

The Trauma Recovery and Empowerment Model (TREM) is a fully manualized group-based intervention designed to facilitate trauma recovery among women with histories of exposure to sexual and physical abuse. Drawing on cognitive restructuring, psychoeducational, and skills-training techniques, the gender-specific 24- to 29-session group emphasizes the development of coping skills and social support. It addresses both short-term and long-term consequences of violent victimization, including mental health symptoms, especially posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and depression, and substance abuse. TREM has been successfully implemented in a wide range of service settings (mental health, substance abuse, criminal justice) and among diverse racial and ethnic populations.

Descriptive Information

Areas of Interest Mental health treatment
Substance abuse treatment
Co-occurring disorders
Outcomes Review Date: December 2006
1: Severity of problems related to substance use
2: Psychological problems/symptoms
3: Trauma symptoms
Outcome Categories Alcohol
Mental health
Social functioning
Ages 18-25 (Young adult)
26-55 (Adult)
Genders Female
Races/Ethnicities American Indian or Alaska Native
Black or African American
Hispanic or Latino
Race/ethnicity unspecified
Settings Residential
Geographic Locations Urban
Implementation History Community Connections Trauma Education staff have provided training in TREM to more than 1,500 clinicians in nearly 30 States. Clinicians have come from a variety of disciplines and programs: approximately 40% have worked in mental health settings, 40% in substance abuse settings, and the remaining 20% in correctional settings, domestic violence programs, or homeless services programs. TREM groups have been implemented in a wide range of agencies, including residential and nonresidential substance abuse and mental health programs, correctional institutions, health clinics, and welfare-to-work programs, among others. TREM groups also have been successfully offered in programs located in urban, inner-city settings (e.g., in Philadelphia, Cleveland, Atlanta, Phoenix, and Denver) and rural settings (e.g., in Maine, South Carolina, Georgia, and Delaware). TREM group participants have typically been recipients of publicly funded mental health, substance abuse, and other human services and have been diverse in terms of overall life skills and functioning. They include the most disenfranchised clients who often are homeless and make heavy use of inpatient, crisis, and other high-cost services. Community Connections has been offering TREM continuously since 1997.
NIH Funding/CER Studies Partially/fully funded by National Institutes of Health: No
Evaluated in comparative effectiveness research studies: Yes
Adaptations TREM was initially developed and implemented in Washington, DC, with a predominantly African American population. Caucasian and Latina women have participated successfully in TREM. A culture-specific adaptation for Latina women has been developed and published in a separate manual.
Adverse Effects No adverse effects, concerns, or unintended consequences were identified by the developer.
IOM Prevention Categories IOM prevention categories are not applicable.