Introduction to Trauma Center Trauma-Sensitive Yoga (TCTSY)

Wednesday, December 6, 2017

“Trauma Center Trauma-Sensitive Yoga (TCTSY) is an evidenced-based treatment for adults affected by traumatic stress, which incorporates yoga principles and practices. TCTSY aims to support emotion regulation, stabilization, and skill building for adults with chronic, treatment-resistant posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD); complex PTSD; dissociative disorders; and other related emotional and behavioral problems.

In TCTSY, elements of traditional yoga are modified to maximize tolerance, build trauma survivors’ experiences of empowerment, and cultivate a more positive relationship to one’s body. Trauma-informed alterations to accommodate unique needs and sensitivities include prioritizing gentleness in movement, removing strongly suggestive language, de-emphasizing posture intensity, eliminating hands-on assistance from the instructor, and highlighting opportunities for participants to adjust the practice and make selections that feel appropriate for themselves. (Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, 2017).

TCTSY is an adjunctive trauma treatment to be utilized with other trauma informed psychotherapy or other evidenced-based trauma treatments. This program overviews the theoretical underpinnings of TCTSY, the methodology TCTSY, current research findings, and practice knowledge that inform the application of TCTSY.  This program offers an introduction to this material in order to increase the practitioner’s understanding of TCTSY.”


Unbreakable Bond: Using Play Therapy to Increase Positive Attachment with Children and Youth

Wednesday, November 1, 2017

“This workshop demonstrates how play therapy can be used to enhance the relationship between our clients and their caregivers. This workshop looks at the importance of the initial caregiver relationship and how it effects a person from birth and into adulthood. This workshop will provide therapist with tools and play interventions to address foundations in parenting and increasing awareness and positive attachment. This is an instructional and hands on training that will help play therapist use interactive tools that use touch, sensory stimulation, and play to increase connection and attachment skills. This workshop will provide play therapist with information pertaining to the different attachment styles, the effects of different attachment styles and how attachment effects one’s ability to functioning in life. This workshop will look at different techniques in play; directive, nondirective, and attachment work. The focus will be on the dyad and the importance of parent’s role in play. Workshop will review how therapist can best support and model for the caregiver. “


Law and Ethics Workshop: What Goes Around…

Wednesday, October 4, 2017

“What goes around….”  is a 6-hour law/ethics workshop and is focused on recent and emerging developments in law and ethics that will impact clinicians of all disciplines, starting with changes to child abuse reporting obligations,  then moving to cover changes for custody evaluators, record-keeping and maintenance, emerging issues and risks regarding telehealth practice, updates on duties to inform and warn when violent behavior may occur, modifications of laws concerning “retirement” of professionals, receiving subpoenas, testifying in court, risk management for supervisors, suicide risk management, and “selected slippery slopes.”



Good Vibrations, Sweet Sensations: Addressing Trauma Through Play Based Sensory Interventions

Wednesday, March 1, 2017

The negative impact of trauma experiences on a child’s developing brain is pervasive, adversely affecting one’s thoughts, feelings, behaviors, physiological reactions, and social relationships. The nature, pattern, timing and duration of therapeutic experiences can change the brain in ways that allow for therapeutic growth and healing. Research has demonstrated the therapeutic powers of play in resolving childhood trauma, enabling the child to work through those experiences and regain a sense of safety in the world in a manner that is non-threatening (Norton & Norton, 2011). In this workshop, we will discuss the ways in which trauma experiences are organized in the brain and how therapeutic interventions should address the key areas that are impacted. Participants will also learn the basic tenets of experiential play therapy, as well as some sensory, play-based strategies to help a child heal from trauma.


Cultural Context of Trauma Recovery

There is a rich and growing body of literature on the cultural context of trauma recovery.  The ethical guidelines of the American Psychological Association note that neglecting to attend to culture is unethical.  There is both theoretical and empirical support for clinician’s attending to cultural influences on trauma recovery.  This presentation will describe the effects of culture as well as provide recommendations for providing cultural congruent care to trauma survivors including both assessment and intervention strategies.  The first two hours will focus on interpersonal traumas such as sexual assault, child abuse, and intimate partner abuse while the last hour will focus on the interpersonal trauma of racist incident based trauma.  Clinician’s will be provided information on providing care for their clients and themselves.


Becoming Trauma Informed: An Introduction to the Neurosequential Models

The first two hours will be a screening of the documentary film , Paper Tigers, which
depicts the educational journey of teens with traumatic histories. [No continuing education
credit for watching the documentary.] The 1.5 hour workshop following the screening focuses on providing an overview of the core concepts and various methods of practical application of the Neurosequential Model of Therapeutics (NMT) and Neurosequential Model in Education (NME). NMT is a developmentally sensitive, neurobiologically-informed approach to clinical problem solving. NMT is not a specific therapeutic technique or intervention. It is an approach that integrates core principles of neurodevelopment and traumatology to inform work with children, families and the communities in which they live (Perry, 2006). The Model explains how traumatic experiences during different stages of development result in impaired functioning in various areas of the brain, offering a treatment approach to “target” impaired areas in a sequential manner to heal trauma from the “bottom-up” (Perry, 2006).


LGBTQ+ Cultural Competency: Focus on Best Practices with Gender Diverse Children and Youth

This workshop provides mental health clinicians an understanding of and clinical skills to work with children and youth with gender expansive and sexual orientation identities and development.  Participants will learn about the best clinical practices in therapeutic treatment as well as best LGBTQ + affirmative trauma informed practices that protect against gender and sexual identity discrimination and provide safe spaces.  The workshop also covers specific terms and definitions, myths, developmental processes related to sexual orientation, the role of the environment, historical models of gender expression, and the impact on mental health outcomes.


In Utero-Impact of Early Environment on Life

The first two hours will be a screening of  the documentary film, IN UTERO, which will showcase enlightening and oftentimes poignant interviews with experts and pioneers. IN UTERO paints a complex tapestry of the human experience from conception to birth. Tapping into cultural myths, popular movies, and technological trends, the film demonstrates how our experiences in utero preoccupy us throughout our lives. [No continuing education credit for watching the documentary.]

The 1.5 hour workshop following the screening focuses on  the intergenerational transmission of trauma and the power of resiliency. Experts in the fast-growing field of epigenetics explain that we are not only our genes but a product of our environment as well, a proven fact that changes our perception of stress and exposures to the environment during pregnancy. The workshop will provide information on how these environmental effects are passed down through the generations through our genes, making it scientifically plausible that a traumatic event that affected your grandma could leave a mark on your genes.  In addition, clinicians will learn how to interrupt the intergenerational transmission  and building resiliency in children and families.


Legal and Ethical Considerations in Clinical Practice

This workshop focuses upon client-therapist situations that exemplify various complex ethical dilemmas. Participants will learn to deal with ethical dilemmas such as (1) dealing with dangerous clients (suicide, Tarasoff), (2) updates to working with minors and family law, (3) updates to Tarasoff/Ewing, (4) contemporary issues related to personal and professional value conflicts, and (5) social networking and internet issues.  Literature updates, along with relevant Codes of Ethics and current expert opinion on standard of care will be included in all areas of discussion. This program overviews the current research findings and practice knowledge that informs the practice of ethical and legal clinical work. Emphasis will be placed upon prevention of ethical violations.


Youth Mental Health
First Aid Training

Sometimes first aid is you!  A young person you know could be experiencing a mental health challenge or crisis.  You can help them.  Youth Mental Health First Aid is a public education program that teaches a 5-step action plan to introduce participants to the unique risk factors and warning signs of mental health problems in adolescents.  The 8-hour training also builds understanding of the importance of early intervention and teaches individuals how to help a youth in crisis.


Adult Mental Health
First Aid Training

Sometimes first aid is you!  Someone you know could be experiencing a mental health challenge or crisis.  You can help them.  Mental Health First Aid is a public education program that teaches a 5-step action plan to introduce participants to the unique risk factors and warning signs of mental health problems in adults.  The 8-hour training also builds understanding of the importance of early intervention and teaches individuals how to help someone in crisis.