Every one of us was raised in various social environments that informed us about our own identity landscape and the identities of others, whether with regard to skin color, age, body size, sexual and gender identity, family role, addiction experience, socioeconomic class, and any other identities that intersect in our lives.
This training provides participants with opportunities to reflect on how these cultural identities - and what we were told about them, both overtly and subtly - impact the lens through which we see the world; the ways we interact with others; our values and biases; even our empathy. Having the courage to explore our own cultural landscape and gently excavate our own unconscious biases helps us ensure that our communication and behavior are consistent with our values and demonstrate a sense of respect for all with whom we interact.
“If not now, when?” – Hillel the Elder
There is no better time than the present to understand racism and its toxic effects on all of us, regardless of our skin color. But we cannot confront what we don't know how to discuss, or educate with information we don’t have. This honest, informative training provides the knowledge, language, and tools to boldly and productively address issues of race, racism, and skin color privilege.
In a respectful, safe environment, we will have honest conversations about the socially-constructed meanings of skin color and race, and the resulting impact of racism in the United States. Our work together will address the ways systemic and personal racism affect how we may have been conditioned to perceive people who are not represented in our own families, neighborhoods, or social circles. Finally, and most importantly, we will work together to find solutions that will enable us to debunk and dismantle structural and individual racism within the organization and within ourselves.
*Trainer’s note: I am a white-European woman who cannot and does not speak for people of color. This training is targeted (but not limited) to other white-Europeans who want a deeper understanding of race and racism without asking our friends or colleagues of color to educate us.
This diversity and inclusion training helps participants foster a workplace or classroom environment that is welcoming and supportive of individuals from a vast array of cultures, including but not limited to cultures of race, ethnicity, gender, sexual identity, religion, body size, citizenship, ability and age. Our identities and experiences impact the lens through which we see the world, and this workshop seeks to assist participants in becoming more clear regarding those identities, how they impact our own behaviors, values and biases, and how to create a workplace that allows everyone to feel valued and welcome. The consistent feedback from this course is that it is uplifting and fun, as well as informative and insight-bearing, and that it can bring a greater sense of community and trust to the work environment.
The question is no longer whether we will have LGBTQIA co-workers, students or clients, but why we might not know that we do, and whether we are adequately prepared to serve members of these communities knowledgeably and respectfully. So let's talk openly about sexuality and gender, and what - if anything - the two have to do with one another. This highly-experiential and interactive training will explain in plain language - through case examples, group discussion and video - exactly what it means to identify as gay, lesbian, bisexual, queer, transgender, cisgender, intersex, non-binary, asexual and gender-queer, among other identities. Participants will leave with a greater understanding of sexual and gender identities and how to be an ally and an advocate through language and action.
A great way to start a conversation around diversity and inclusion! There is language our clients, co-workers or students use that can provoke a - shall we say - potent response. This brief, solution-focused training seeks to help participants better understand the ways we respond when someone uses language we perceive as offensive; to evaluate the impact of the setting and the speaker’s emotional state when deciding how we respond; to increase our awareness of our own verbal triggers and how to determine whether and how to respond, and to provide solutions for engaging in "confrontation without humiliation:" responding in ways that honor our own boundaries without shaming the speaker.
Gender identity is an integral part of each of us that we may or may not ever have considered. One of the reasons gender identity can be confusing is our lack of understanding about the ways that we are taught about and "perform" gender every single day. We'll clarify the differences between sex and gender, bring cultural binary-gender expectations out into the open, discuss the social impact of ideas regarding masculinity and femininity, and arrive at a level of ease and fluency with regard to understanding and talking about gender expression and identity.
Self-Care: Preventing Burnout and Vicarious Trauma - 3 hours
This training provides an opportunity for service providers to receive some of the care and understanding they give so generously to clients, in a safe and respectful atmosphere that enhances participation and authenticity. We will discuss the potential for vicarious trauma as a result of working with clients in distress; use various approaches to evaluate stress, vicarious trauma, compassion fatigue and burnout, and discuss approaches to self-care. This training is highly interactive and experiential, providing participants with concrete, practical tools to use going forward in order to develop a greater awareness of how stress manifests and how to compassionately care for ourselves when we experience it.
Teen Suicide: Prevention, Detection and Intervention - 3 hours
This interactive training takes on a topic that can feel overwhelming to many caregivers and service providers: the very real risks of adolescent suicide. The combination of developmental stage, rapid hormonal changes, and self-esteem extremes put this age group at greater risk for suicide than any other, yet there are also very concrete and protective ways of providing support to teens who may be at risk for self-harm. By the close of the workshop, participants will have a deeper understanding of adolescent emotional development; potential warning signs and risk factors for suicide risk; and concrete, practical interventions to provide the best chances for the adolescent’s survival through such a transforming and challenging time.
All trainings are eligible for CEC units with NASW approval, and some qualify for diversity-specific training credits. Most trainings are offered both in-person and virtually.
All trainings are eligible for CEC/CEU certification in the state of CT: please contact me for more information.