Northwest Peer Support Conference

Session Descriptions


Wednesday, February 12, 2014

8 a.m. - 9 a.m.
Registration Check-In / Meet and Greet / Continental Breakfast

9 a.m.
Welcome

9:05 a.m. - 11 a.m.
Emotional Body Armor: Breaking Free from the Bonds of the Badge
Sean Riley, President and Founder of Safe Call Now

Emotional Body Armor for First Responders is an intensive 2-hour workshop identifying those  issues that manifest while working on the front lines of a demanding career that can lead to many issues regarding (but not limited to) trauma, relationships, finances, mental health and substance abuse that can result in the loss of relationships, jobs and eventually their life. While there is a stigma associated with reaching out for help or reaching out for help for others within the profession, the intensive workshops are designed to overcome these barriers. The intensive workshops are also designed to empower first responders to look within and confront issues (both on and off the job) such as trauma, co -dependent relationships, setting healthy boundaries, using tools to increase self-esteem, to understanding and effectively experience all emotions and creating a tactical personal self-care plan to be successful in their personal and professional lives.

This workshop is designed for all first responders and their family members if they choose and to provide them with the tools to help individuals being held back both personally and professionally by the bonds of addictive behaviors, co-dependency, family systems or trauma in any form. Participants will examine those barriers and experiences that influence the capacity for a happy, healthy life and career. The intensive workshop experience will reveal how painful life and job experiences are and that they can hamper the growth of individuals and block the ability to be authentic in relationships with self and others.

11:15 a.m. - 12:15 p.m.
Got Change? Practical Approaches for Dealing with Change in the Ever-changing Workplace
Tim Dietz, MA, LPC

If life and work were not stressful enough, “Change” has propelled the public safety professions to the most stressful occupations in the United States. Gain an understanding of the sources of stress in an ever-changing atmosphere, learn the impact it can have on your life and career, and gain simple tools for stress reduction, mitigation, and recovery.

12:15 - 1 p.m.
Lunch provided

1 - 3:45 p.m.
Emotional First Aid
June Vining, Executive Director of the Trauma Intervention Program of Portland/Vancouver

Those in law enforcement and other emergency responders have important and significant, yet stressful jobs and life happens. There are relationships that need attention, kids, elderly parents, alcohol or drug use as a coping skill etc. The goal of the session is to equip peer supporters with the skills to “be there” for their co-workers without becoming a personal counselor and let them talk or get them to a professional. What are their resources and how do we help them use them.

4 - 5 p.m.
Understanding Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing in the Treatment of Trauma
Drew Prochniak, MA, LPC, LMHC, of the Integrative Trauma Treatment Center

In recent years, increased attention toward first responders mental health has lead to greater support for improving interventions and the availability services. Learn why Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing is a preferred method for treating post-trauma stress reactions, how it can help negate their effects in the future, how it can increase overall performance and the science behind it all.


Thursday, February 13, 2013

7:30 a.m.
Continental Breakfast

8 a.m. - 12 p.m.
Biology of Trauma
Peter Volkmann, MSW

The mind and body work together.  As CISM interventionists respond to psychological and emotional trauma, they must also understand the biological reactions to traumatic events.  This training provides an overview of biological responses to critical incidents as they relate to groups and individuals.  Practical “Back Pocket Skills” to enhance interventions will be presented.

12 - 1 p.m.
Lunch Provided

1 - 5 p.m.
From Trauma to Addiction
Peter Volkmann, MSW

CISM interventions sooner or later will confront all sorts of addictions with individuals.  This workshop provides the understanding of the path of a traumatized individual  toward addictions.  An awareness of attitudes and prejudices towards addictions will be examined.  Practical “Back Pocket Skills” when dealing with addictions during CISM interventions will be presented.


Friday, February 14, 2013

7:30 a.m.
Continental Breakfast

8 a.m. - 12 p.m.
Professional Resilience: Be Your Best Under Pressure, and After Incidents
Robin Rose

Designed for professionals who work with highly stressed clients or in crisis/stressful work environments, this workshop helps people understand what happens to their thinking, health and professionalism when they are under pressure, managing change or in states of high stress. Robin provides both insights and techniques that can be used immediately to transform potentially dramatic or emotional reactions into effective, professional responses.

Using the latest research on high-function brain states, this session will teach participants how to shift their brain’s process in the heat of the moment and reduce or eliminate stress. Participants will learn how to relax, think clearly and stay focused under pressure, adapt to and manage change, all while maintaining their personal resilience and professionalism in the most challenging moments. With a focus on those that work with highly agitated and/or frightened clients or the public, Robin shares how to work with challenging or crisis behaviors, and importantly, not personalize them, reducing the vicarious trauma that can result from days of working with overwhelmed, angry or upset individuals.

  • Understand the relationship between the brain, thinking and stress
  • Learn how high brain function is negatively impacted by stress, hurry or worry
  • Understand the chemistry and dynamics of ‘triggered’ emotions
  • Practice accessing your focused/thinking brain
  • Learn to respond from values and agreements rather than emotions
  • Learn to reduce stress and tension in your body immediately
  • Learn to disengage and reduce stress after crisis, incidents, confrontations or challenging interactions

12 - 1 p.m.
Lunch on your own

1 - 5 p.m.
Developing Peer Teams and Resilient Leaders: Creating the Culture of Behavioral Health in the First Response Professions
Tim Dietz, MA, LPC

Public-safety organizations are very good at incident preparation and mitigation -- but sometimes they can forget about the needs of their people. The sad statistic is that emergency responders are more apt to die from their own hand than during emergency operations. In this special session, learn how to "Create the Culture" for behavioral health through the development of Peer Teams and creation of resilient leaders -- helping to install an understanding of stress sources, common symptoms, and tools for rapid recovery.