Harm:ED – Understanding Self-Injury Behaviors

Date(s) - 07/22/2021
10:30 AM - 1:30 PM



Training Details

Harm:ED – Understanding Self-Injury Behaviors

Applications Open July 5th-July 20th, 2021!

Harm:ED – Understanding Self-Injury Behaviors is a virtual, three-hour training designed to raise awareness for individuals and agencies who seek to understand more about self-injury, the reasons underlying self-injury behaviors, addressing stigma, or to improve upon personal and agency responses to those who self-injure. New Beginnings, Inc., with support from the Maine Department of Education, is pleased to offer this training opportunity, and staff of youth-serving agencies and alternative schools are welcome to apply. This is a space to learn, develop, expand, and share. New Beginnings seeks to promote the principles of harm-reduction, respect, understanding, growth, and choice of the individuals we serve.

Self-injury is known as the intentional cause of injury to one’s own body. Sometimes, these actions are triggered by events such as loss of someone close, loss of employment, incarceration, relationship problems, housing instability, or other crises; self-injury is a means of coping with tension or stress. Adults who work with youth who are at high risk for HIV or who have experienced trauma are often faced with supporting young people who use behaviors like cutting or other forms of self-injury or body modification as a means of coping. This training will help supportive adults, teachers, and other youth workers learn how to help teens and young adults reduce their risk for the transmission of HIV or other bloodborne pathogens, as well as other negative health outcomes associated with self-injury. This course seeks to discuss the risk of infectious diseases like HIV and their relationship to the behaviors of self-injury.


  • Self-injury is more prevalent amongst young people, though by no means confined to them
  • In the 2017 Maine Integrated Youth Survey, statistics showed that among LGBTQ+ youth grades 9-12, 39.7% of gay/lesbian youth, 48.8% of bisexual youth, and 59.2% of transgender youth have practiced self-injuring behaviors; these rates are higher than among non-LGBTQ+ youth populations

Who should attend?

  • This training is open to professionals and staff of youth-serving agencies & alternative schools
  • This will be an introductory training, though all knowledge levels are welcome to join

In this training we will:

Often the conversations around self-injury focus on how to change or stop the behavior, yet we rarely have the chance to talk about why, when, and how self-injury shows up.

  • Develop participants knowledge and understanding of what self-injury is and is not
  • Have an improved sensitivity and awareness of the needs of people who self-injure
  • Consider the relationship between self-injury and suicide
  • Understand the prevalence of self-injury across different age groups and genders
  • Become familiar with the functions, motivations, and meanings that underlie self-injury behavior
  • Develop awareness of helpful harm-reduction responses to individuals who self-injure, including those that reduce the risk of transmitting HIV infection

What you receive as a result of attending the training:

  • Certificate of Attendance upon completion
  • CEUs are available for purchase

Do you work with or otherwise mentor a young person who may be interested in learning the skills associated with participating in this training alongside you?

Email ewabnitz@newbeginmaine.com for more info!


What you need to participate:

This training is virtual; participation requires access to a device compatible with Zoom software, a stable internet connection, and working speakers, webcam, and microphone. Participants should also be able to successfully navigate the “chat” feature (i.e. working mouse and keyboard).

Training Application

Applications are closed for this event.

For more information contact:
Kelly Colbath

Kelly Colbath

Prevention & Training Coordinator

PLEASE NOTE: Application priority will be given to youth workers and staff from youth/social service agencies, residential programs, and alternative schools who work with teens and young adults at high risk for negative health outcomes or homelessness/out of home placements. Adults/educators who do not currently work directly with these youth (e.g. primarily work with younger adolescents, children, lower-risk populations, or in program administration) may submit an application request but will likely be placed on the waiting list until after the application deadline, and contacted as space allows.