Trauma as a result of distressing experiences has the ability to transcend through generations of a family, continuing to affect each new generation. Second generation offenders are often individuals who had, or have, a parent or caretaker who has also been incarcerated. When people talk about their trauma it has the capacity to offer new perspective, self-awareness, and liberty from unspoken events. Helping families to reduce their stress through meaningful discussion is critical. As Rebecca Solnit stated, “A free person tells their story.” It will take into consideration that trauma often leads people to question relationships with those closest to them including themselves.
This training will help participants identify unhelpful patterns, roles and behaviours that thwart the healing process of families that have loved ones who are incarcerated. Emphasis will be placed on CBT’s Cognitive Restructuring (CR), and Narrative therapy techniques for use with families, including therapeutic stories that deepen, explore and process a thorough sense of self. Strategies to engage families will be outlined, as well as activities for use in a family session. These evidence-based approaches will incorporate supportive emotional mindfulness and self-regulating techniques.
This training will attempt to minimize the oppression faced by various groups whose stories are often silenced. By redefining whose voices are heard we offer a much more inclusive picture of reality. The voices of family members are often misunderstood and limited.
- Understand how effective communication is impaired within the family system following the incarceration of a loved one
- Understand the importance of family focused work as a key to interrupting the cycle of crime.
- Learn therapeutic interventions based on Narrative Therapy stories that are interwoven into the lives of other family members
- Examine how healing circles can support families that are constantly stressed and the impact of the stress on the nervous system.
- Consider how the impact of systemic oppression and racism informs the healing process of racialized families
Who Should Attend
This workshop is suitable for individuals working with families who are impacted by incarceration and those who might be indirectly working with children or youth who might be struggling with feelings around this issue and grief and loss of a parent. This may include mental health professionals, social workers, clinicians and those that work in youth justice, criminal justice and corrections, police services, victim services.
This 6-hour training is delivered online as two 3-hour interactive virtual sessions using Zoom.