Through Her Eyes – Workshops

During registration, you will be asked to pick a first choice and a second choice for both AM and PM time slots. 

A.M. Workshops

AM-1: Women in Leadership

Presenter: Lois Nesci, CHD Chief Operating Officer

This workshop is designed to assist women who are first time and middle managers to gain a greater understanding of how they approach their role. This includes exploring what called them to managerial roles and identifying influential and contributing factors and individuals. Participants will learn what it means for them to be women in leadership roles.

AM-2: Survivor of Sexual Abuse HER Trauma to Triumph

Presenter: Kathy Picard, Sexual Abuse Prevention Advocate, Author, Speaker

This workshop will take the audience into my story of being sexually abused at age 7-17. Sharing how I turned my life into a healthy, positive one. Finding the courage & resources to use my voice to help myself. Learn the signs of sexual abuse, why don’t victims speak up? When they do how did they get here? My Advocacy work today, how can you help others? My Book will be available $15.

AM-3: Resilience, Adverse Experiences and HOPE in Turbulent Times

Presenter: Stephen Boos, M.D., FAAP, Baystate Family Advocay Center

This session will review the early childhood building blocks of lifetime achievement, the impact of adverse childhood experiences, and the six protective factors that help children survive and thrive in tough times.

AM-4: From Stress to Strength

Presenter: Susan Morton, LICSW, CHD

Resilience is defined as: the capacity to recover quickly from difficulties; toughness. Why is it that some people can face some of the most difficult life circumstances and still manage to cope, progress and even thrive? This workshop will look at the qualities it takes to build resilience and the possibility of teaching these skills to clients and staff.

AM-5: Youth Over Violence: A Violence Prevention Model in Springfield

Presenters: Amber Connors & Liz Dineen, YWCA of Western MA

This workshop is designed to share our violence prevention model with community members. Additionally, we will be discussing the tenants of violence prevention and how we can ALL create initiatives across the socio-ecological model that support our young people and create a safe, inclusive, violence-free community!

AM-6: Commercial Sexual Exploitation of Children: Responding to Victims

Presenter: Katryn Haley-Little, LICSW, My Life My Choice

Victims of CSEC recount a profound sense of being alone and without resources. This workshop will give a brief overview of the national and local picture of CSEC, and provide attendees with trauma-informed skills and strategies for having conversations with exploited youth to ensure they feel safe, heard, and are connected to the appropriate resources in their communities.

AM-7: Understanding Youth Health Inequities through Youth-Involved Data Story-Telling

Presenter: Jessie Gleckel, MPH, Public Health Institute of Western MA

During this workshop we will engage workshop attendees in a process to look at youth population level data from Springfield to explore some of the mental and physical health inequities experienced among youth. Workshop attendees will have the opportunity to work together to begin interpreting the data and telling a story that can help them advocate for responsive programs and/or policies.

AM-8: Building Your Clinical Trauma Toolkit: The Power of Story

Presenter: Elizabeth A. D’Amico, Ph.D., LICSW, LCSW, Cambridge College

Nursery rhymes, fairy tales, fables, archetypes—from the time we are young children, stories enchant us, mesmerize us, motivate us, enlighten us, and can heal us.  Our life, our journey, is also a story that we understand in a particular way.  Those who have experienced trauma during the developmental years often struggle to change what is frequently a pain-filled story to one that is filled with hope and possibility.  Dr. D’Amico will share some strategies for breaking out of negative personal story-lines as we recognize that while we can’t change our early life chapters, we can change how we view those chapters and thus, the rest of our life story.

AM-9: Treating chronic self-harm behaviors: Deconstructing the meaning that hospitalization can hold for adolescent girls and exploring meaningful interventions beyond brief hospitalizations

Presenter: April Slater Roche, LICSW, Hillcrest Educational Centers

This workshop addresses safety & treatment needs for girls engaging in self-harm behaviors. Often, girls are denied hospital services for self harm, labelled as “too acute” or conversely, as “attention seeking”. Honoring their voices, this workshop offers insight & interventions to mitigate risk & reduce behaviors that result in need for services often sought through psychiatric hospitalization.

AM-10: From Trauma to Triumph: Outreach Mechanisms for Service Providers Working With At Risk Young Women

Presenter: Christine Monska, M.S., Women’s Fund of Western Massachusetts

This workshop will focus on outreach mechanisms for service providers who do programming for at risk and under-served young women. The outreach model includes ways in which participants can center the voices of young women, utilize their unique experiences and empower them to participate in recruitment to reach under-represented and marginalized groups.


P.M. Workshops

PM-1:The Road To Recovery: Navigating Trauma

Presenters: Keynote Speaker, Laura Prescott, Sister Witness International & Nina Slovik, LICSW, CHD

This workshop will focus on the developmental, social and psychological challenges of traumatic and invalidating childhood and adolescent experiences for young girls and women. With a particular emphasis on the journey from trauma to recovery, we will discuss ways in which resiliency, born of trauma, can be understood and addressed

PM-2: The Use of Music to Facilitate Understanding of Others Trauma

Presenter: Cheryl Green, PhD, DNP, RN, LCSW, CNL, MAC, FAPA, CNE

Music can be used to facilitate understanding of others trauma. For licensed professionals providing services to trauma patients, understanding others experiences outside the context of traditional therapeutic jargon, may be beneficial in the development of empathy. The use of music videos to explore others trauma, may provide a non-threatening and safe way, for therapists to process their feeling.

PM-3: The Movement Project, presents “My Movement Theory” (MMT)

Presenter: Laurice Jiggetts, MS, The Movement Project, Dance Program, Inc

My Movement Theory is designed to motivate students into taking ownership of their own personal growth and development through interactive dance, and social and life skill concepts. Students will be prompted to personalize the word movement. They will be asked: In what ways are their lives defined by movement, and how much control do they have on the movements they choose? My Movement Theory allows students to critically think about their education and their future; through music, dance, group, and hands on activities.

PM-4: In Their Voices: Panel of Women in Recovery

Panel Moderator: Debra McLaughlin, Opioid Task Force of Franklin County and the North Quabbin Region

Trauma, especially in early childhood, can have lifelong consequences with more than three in four women and men in treatment for substance use disorders reporting trauma histories. But stories of hope, healing, and recovery abound. “In Their Voices: Women in Recovery” offers a powerful glimpse into the struggles and successes women have experienced during their recovery journey during this lively and informative panel discussion.

PM-5: Restorative Writing: Re-framing the Trauma Narrative through Creative Expression

Presenter: Lauren Singer Ledoux, LICSW, MSW, CHD

This workshop will focus on navigating the experience of trauma through restorative writing–using radical healing, empowerment, and creative expression as a means of personal growth and self-acceptance. With an emphasis on framing this model towards young people, the group will be given a brief informational presentation on the evidence base associated with writing as a successful coping tool for those affected by trauma, specifically the impact that writing-focused therapy has on younger individuals. This informational piece will also demonstrate how to facilitate restorative writing practice in a therapeutic environment. Members of the workshop will then be asked to participate in an example writing prompt with a voluntary opportunity to share their responses.

PM-6: We Are Resilient! Supporting Queer & Trans Youth

Presenter: James Shultis, Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education

Youth who identify as LGBTQIA+ are often at a higher risk for experiencing trauma. Navigating environments that can be hostile, whether these be school, a community agency, the justice system, and/or with families, LGBTQIA+ youth learn how to survive and thrive. This workshop will equip participants with basic terminology, actions you can take to be a better ally, and tools to educate others.

PM-7: Treating the “Too Acute”: Residential Programming for High Risk Adolescent Girls

Presenters: Melissa Orazio, LMHC, M.Ed. & Peter Lopenzina, LICSW, Hillcrest Educational Centers

This workshop will provide an overview of one agency’s experience developing a gender responsive residential program for high risk adolescent girls. The unique, and often challenging, needs of this population and common barriers to effective service provision will be addressed. The use of the youth’s perspective in staff training and and program development will also be highlighted.

PM-8: The Unspoken Truth – Through A Child’s Eyes

Presenter: Lisa Zarcone, Self Employed Author/Advocate/Public Speaker

Sharing her personal story “The Unspoken Truth A Memoir” taking you on a journey through life growing up with her mentally ill mother. The abuse that she sustained by the hands of her mother and others is nothing short of hideous. Lisa will talk about the child’s mind and how resilient children can be as they are facing trauma and abuse. She will also share what coping method helped her survive. She will have a table set up and will be selling her book for $15 and giving away FREE bracelets.  Read the interview with Lisa Zarcone featured in Boston Voyager

PM-9: Recognizing and Responding to Child Abuse

Presenters: Kellie Beaulieu, M.Ed., Northwestern District Attorney’s Office & Irene Woods, LICSW,Children’s Advocacy Center of Franklin County and North Quabbin

This workshop will educate service providers on how to recognize the signs of child physical and sexual abuse and commercial sexual exploitation of children (CSEC). Participants will learn about the disclosure process, as well as how to respond to disclosures of abuse.

PM-10: How To Manage That Critical Inner Voice

Presenter: Maureen Ross Gemme, MS. Ed, CTT+, DTM, Emerge Leadership Academy LLC

We all have an internal voice that can be very critical at times depending upon how you were raised and what you experienced as a child. This voice can cause a lot of anxiety and stress within you. If left unchallenged, it can keep you stuck, unfulfilled and feeling like a failure. In this workshop participants will learn how to identify and transform the voice so dreams can be fulfilled.

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